This post is a part of The 15-Day Relationship Challenge. If you’re just now tuning in, click here for the whole series.
Celebrate! What we have accomplished.
Good morning. Welcome to day 10, cellll-ebrate good times, c’mon!
We’re at day 10, and in case you’ve missed how we got here, take a look at where we’ve been in this 15-Day challenge:
Day 1 – Hello! The gift of welcome.
Day 2 – Roles. Where we come from.
Day 3 – Personalities. Who we are.
Day 4 – Top 5, Part 1. Keystone Stories of Loss.
Day 5 – Top 5, Part 2. Keystone Stories of Joy.
Day 6 – Growth. Who am I becoming?
Day 7 – Rest. Let all things be.
Day 8 – Remember Us. Our story.
Day 9 – Grace. Sweat the small stuff.
Today, we’re going to talk about celebrations.
Have you ever noticed that your photo albums are all full of pictures from happy moments? There may be a stray picture or two about something sad, but generally we take pictures of happy times. Why? I think it’s because we need more help remembering the good times. Difficult times stick to us like velcro, thus we don’t need help remembering those. It would do our lives good to think and reflect about the happy times as much, or more, as we do for the hard times.
I often talk with couples about the relational problems that stem from competition. Competition means that there is a winner and a loser. No one likes to be a loser, and no one wants to be with a loser. So it’s really a lose-lose situation when competition is present in relationships. You might win the argument, decision, debate, but you will ultimately lose. Win the battles lose the war is a horrible strategy. So let’s talk about a different kind of strategy, and a different kind of winning.
There are battles, and there is a war. The best strategy is to choose your battles, and fight together in the war. Unfortunately it’s easy to confuse our spouse as being the enemy. When this happens, competition is nearby. The real enemy are the threats and forces that are out to break the two of you apart. Societies thrive and prosper when families are in tact and committed to a common purpose together. There are threats a plenty that don’t want socieity to thrive, nor do they want your marriage to prosper.
Teammates win together, and they lose together. When we get married we create and join a team together. We give up our individual rights, and together create new rights that serve the team, not just the individual. Tomorrow when we talk about losses, we need a foundation that allows us to grieve together the difficulties and losses in our relationship.
Winning as a team means that we’re competing together against a common goal, a common enemy. When we win, it calls for celebrations to rejoice and remember the goodness that can be accomplished if we work together. Couples desperately need these monuments of good to remember and hold on to, especially when the storms of life show up and challenge us to the core.
- What did I think about my spouse in reading today’s material? Was it kind? Was it thoughtful? Was it loving?
- Did I have feelings, thoughts, questions, or stories that came to mind?
- What is something I can do for them today?
- How can I welcome and receive what they have done for me today?
What are the top 5 most celebratory moments of your marriage? Answer these questions about each story:
- What happened?
- What did I feel?
- How did I respond?
- What was amazing about this event?
- What did I do with the joy I felt?
Give yourself some time to complete today’s assignment. You might need 30 or more minutes to appropriately answer the above questions. Be thoughtful, be kind, don’t rush through this assignment.
Hello! Welcome back. Great to see you again. How was your day?
Stories are awesome, and I hope you have some great stories to tell after today’s assignment. Stories give us hope, and help us and others express this hope in profound ways. I think this is why we love movies so much.
Take 10-15 minutes tonight with your spouse to talk through your day.
- What were the highs and lows?
- Where were you surprised?
- Was there anything different about your day because of the assignment(s)?
- From this mornings reading, what stood out to you?
- If you’re willing, share your answers to the assignment.
We need to remember these stories of goodness and joy. Go on a date together and visit a local home decor store.
You’re going to buy two things: A container and a bag of smooth rocks. The container needs to be small enough to fit on a shelf or table, but big enough to hold 25+ or so rocks about the size of a silver dollar. The rocks need to be smooth so that you can write on them. Look for river stones at the store (A store like TJ Max, At Home, JoAnns, etc)
Go home, put the container in a visible place in your house. Take 5 rocks, and write a phrase on the rock that represents one story of celebration. Fill the jar with as many stories as you can. Continue filling the jar in the days, weeks, and years ahead. This is your monument jar.
In the future, when your relationship feels like it is “on the rocks,” take out the rocks and look at what is on them. You’ll be reminded of what goodness has happened, and what goodness can still happen.