Marriage: Do The Math in Your Marriage
Timely, Intentional Targets toward Multiplied Relational Togetherness
It’s simple marital math. The greater the effort you put into staying connected —the greater the overall effect on your marital companionship. There is no substitute to spending quality ‘alone time’ for the husband-wife relationship to stay strong and vibrant. None! My goal is to address this. I am presenting a simple marital tool to upgrade your focus on creating and maintaining marital “US” time, the two of you, alone together.
We are told that “7” is the Perfect Number in Biblical genre or it’s the Lucky “7” in the gambling world. No matter how you look at it, you’d be perfectly lucky and biblically astute to aim at the practical targets of togetherness listed below. It is centered around 6 elements of TIME — minutes, hours, days, weeks, months and years — and what you can do to establish real time-space events to stay connected as a couple. 7 x 7 x 7 x 7 x 7 x 7 is easy and catchy concept to remember… to remember to do these that is. You will have to agree on and then, commit to hit these targets listed below as fully and as often as possible.
I am contesting that 7 x 7 x 7 x 7 x 7 x 7 = 1 not 117, 649 but rather 1 AMAZING MARRIAGE. You can appreciate that if you are like most couples, sadly, your marriage as long since slipped from priority. First Corinthians 7:33,34 says, “But a married man is concerned about the affairs of this world—how he can please his wife— (and) a married woman is concerned about the affairs of this world—how she can please her husband.” Pleasing each other at the core implies taking time for each other. Don’t miss this. Taking time to keep your relationship strong – to have one amazing marriage — fully honours the Lord.
Timely Targets of Togetherness 7 x 7 x 7 x 7 x 7 x 7 = 1
Praying together. It just sounds right. After all, shouldn’t couples that are supposedly seeking God be reaching out regularly as one in prayer? Maybe you have never regularly prayed together. If that’s true, you’re not alone. Relational research shows that 92% of couples that call themselves Christians don’t pray together (FamilyLife Survey, USA). In their home, there may be the customary mealtime ritual or a bedtime prayer routine with kids but to actually pray with your mate…it just isn’t happening. Consistency and sincerity are the key. Just start today and make it a sustainable habit by keeping it short and to the point. Agree now to pray together for 7 minutes every night alternating who does the praying each day.
We say to friends we meet, “Keep in touch.” To do this, words must be exchanged. Silence doesn’t cut it. On one hand, you must reach out. On the other hand, you must welcome the connection gesture. You say this isn’t your style. You say you’re too busy with work. You say you don’t want to be distracted. It’s true that some jobs require greater attention. Fair enough but most are fine with a 5-minute call. Stop. Commit to connect while you are apart during the day once every 7 hours. And if you can’t get through for a quick phone call, at least leave a message of love and warmth to your better half. Text one more time during the next 7 hours to update life developments, family activities and arrival times. Regular touch points like these say “I am thinking about you”.
A date is not only a person you asked out or agreed to go out with but it was something that you do with someone you care about. You go out on a date with your date on a certain date. That sounds like that can get confusing but wait. It’s not a problem now because dating is what you “used” to do. That’s the problem. Most couples let dating slide from your list of priorities. Here’s the target here: every 7 days, you and your spouse spend 2-3 hours alone on a DATE. You would be wise to try our Secrets of Happy Camper Dating to guide you in your dating rejuvenation.
*Note: If you have children in elementary school or younger, move the target understandably to every 2 weeks apart.
Straight to the point. You are working to find more time together. So, every 7 weeks, spend a day away together. It could be a 6–8-hour activity of your choice biking, kayaking, hiking, a museum, or a walk in a park, dinner and a movie. This could also include an overnighter where you get someone to watch the kids so you have more like a full day together. Keep “hitting refresh” on your marriage. Note: respectfully, these suggestions are resources permitting. If you can’t afford certain aspects of these targets, don’t bail. Adjust.
You got it now. Every 7 months, or about twice per year, target your togetherness by taking an overnight or a weekend away. Do what you can afford. But remember, you can’t afford not to. Use a friend’s camper. Use a friend or family member’s home when they are away. Do a house swap for two nights. Regardless, this is 36-48 hours spent exclusively with your spouse for the purpose of reconnection – lots of quality “US” time.
Keep these timely, intentional steps going by agreeing to spend one week away just the 2 of you every 7 years…yes, without any of the family, just the 2 of you. That means there are 6 great family vacation years and then one year with a shorter family vacation and a full-on week of togetherness. Plan for it. Look forward to it. Save to make it happen.
What do you project would happen in your marriage if you actually tried this “new math” of 7 x 7 x 7 x 7 x 7 x 7= 1? Can you see you two getting closer together instead of drifting apart? Remember, if you aim at nothing, you’ll hit it every time! Honestly do your best at incorporating these timely targets of togetherness.
© Dr. Dave Currie – February 2022