Marriage Monday: Pause, Pray, Prepare & Power
Marriage Monday: I'm So Stressed!
The fatigue has built up from the long day. You’ve dealt with people for hours. You’ve needed to be nice to all those people, because after all, it is your job. You’re already stressing over the list of needs the kids have for the evening. You think…if one more thing goes wrong or one more person says something ******, it will send me over the edge.
Then, you walk in the house and see your spouse has dumped their work stuff in the middle of the living room. You notice the trash they were going to take out yesterday is still overflowing in the kitchen. Your temperature rises as you notice they forgot to put the milk away before they left this morning. If they pop out right now from wherever they may be in this house, you may say things that will take you both on a road to….oh boy, we don’t want to know.
Have you been there? Have you had those days where you are stretched to the limit on your patience, to the point that you are physically and emotionally ready to spew unkind words at your spouse? Almost as if you are armed and ready?
Unfortunately, you are not alone. The question isn’t whether the scenario happens or not (because more than likely, it happens to all of us…or for some, it has happened so frequently that it has turned into the norm). The real question is, how will we respond to the scenario?
Check out these tips below and surprise your spouse after your stressful day by pausing, praying, preparing, and using the power of your words to glorify God and build a stronger marriage for your family.
Intentional Tips for Strengthening Your Marriage this Week:
*Pause: When re-engaging with your spouse and family after you’ve had a stressful day, pause. Physically pause. Don’t go right in and face the people most important in your life when you are filled with anxiety and stress, ready to blow at any moment. Pause and take a deep breath. Sit for even a minute and gather yourself. Close your eyes. Breathe.
*Pray: Share with God the frustrations you’ve encountered in your day. Let Him know you do not wish to place these stresses upon your marriage and family. Then ask Him to calm your spirit. He is the provider of peace. Allow His gift of peace to wash over you, as He listens and answers your prayer.
*Prepare: The very definition of “prepare” is to make ready beforehand, set up, be established. Allow that to translate to your heart and mind. Anticipating that your spouse may also have had a stressful day can help in this preparation. What does it look like to be ready, set up, and established in reference to connecting with your spouse after a stressful day? Does it mean picking up something at the store and giving it to your spouse as a greeting when you walk in? Does it mean having his/her favorite mug already filled with hot coffee when they walk in the door? Perhaps it means having the kiddos ready to run up and give mommy or daddy a big hug when the door opens. Or maybe it looks having a special meal made. Don’t go to where your mind is tempting you right now, with the “I’m the one that’s had the bad day”. Yes, you have, but it is so amazing what God does to our own heart when we shift the focus from ourselves to our spouse. When we consider how we can make their day better, it honestly will also make our day better. Our attitudes shift when we walk in the door and have a little gift to give them. Our heart posture changes when we have prepared a meal that will make our spouse smile. Our angry words disintegrate as we prepare and make a conscious decision to love someone in very tangible ways.
*Power: Remember, there is power in our words. After preparing your hearts, and moving forward with life-giving actions, be sure to use words that will build up your marriage. God instructs us to build one another up with our words (1 Thes 5:11), and there is of course good reason for that. We build a stronger foundation for our marriage when we speak to our spouse with words that build rather than tear down. Instead of removing pieces of our foundation by spewing hateful words, we are able to add pieces to our foundation with loving, encouraging words. And these helpful, strong pieces will be used for other layers of the marriage to be built upon.
Misty Cramer has been married to Todd for 39 years, and together they have raised five sons. They have been in youth, family, and marriage ministry for over three decades. Misty is an author & speaker who recently released her first book. The Every Day God, 40 Daily Devotions for Walking with God through Everyday Moments, quickly made its way to Amazon's #1 New Release and Best Seller lists in multiple categories. In this book, she authentically shares her own story to remind us all that God has a specific plan, even in the midst of life's messes. She and Todd reside in rural Michigan. They enjoy mentoring couples, and speaking at marriage retreats, while Misty is also available for speaking at Ladies Retreats, MOPS, and church and community events.
Have a wonderful week. I would love to hear how you were able to work through some of the stresses in your marriage. Please feel free to leave a comment or question on the form below, or connect with me on Facebook and Instagram. I also send out a monthly email that includes a devotion, schedule of my speaking, and other words of encouragement. I’d love for you to be a part of what God is doing through the email group. That link is also below. Alright, enough chit-chat.
Misty sends out a monthly devotion as part of her newsletter, and she'd love to send it along to you. The link to subscribe to the devotion, as well as the link to Misty's book can be found below:
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Misty Cramer © 2023
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