No matter how long we’ve been married, all of us need to spring clean our marriage often. How long has it been since you’ve done a thorough cleaning of your marriage? Need ideas? Check out these eight ways to spring clean your marriage.
Is It Time to Spring Clean Your Marriage?
Rebecca Barlow Jordan
Just as a house needs a thorough spring-cleaning after a long, dormant winter, so do our marriages. As we sweep out the cobwebs in the neglected corners of our lives, we’ll discover a new sparkle and shine. Here are eight ways to freshen up your marriage:
1. Develop a plan for your cleaning ritual.
2. Sort through accumulated expectations.
Most marriages begin with hidden agendas of his or her expectations. If a wife expects her husband to continue romancing her after the honeymoon and he fails, resentment may follow. A husband who secretly longs for a wife like his mother may set himself up for disappointment when his wife exhibits the opposite behavior. Be realistic with each other about meeting needs. Although God is the only one who can meet your total needs, a mutual exchange of longings and wishes will encourage give and take and help avoid unnecessary hurt.
3. Discard old habits.
4. Mend the tears of broken relationships and hurt feelings.
A stitch in honesty and forgiveness will save years of unraveling. Love is eager to settle differences. Godly love is neither blind nor faultfinding. True love sees weaknesses but rallies to cover them with strength, compassion and encouragement.
5. Clean out forgotten closets.
6. Replace worn-out-clothes of bitterness with new garments of praise.
This will require time for personal discipline with the Lord in prayer and Bible study. Meditate on His Word daily, and you will find your marriage adorned with new beauty.
7. Vacuum up the spills of harsh words and thoughtless deeds.
8. Polish your marriage often with generous coats of compliments and caring behaviors.
Continue this maintenance program daily, not just at once-a-year spring-cleaning time. Catch your mate doing something noteworthy, and give word gifts of praise. Exchange caring behavior lists with each other… the things you’d each like your spouse to do for you.
No matter how perfect a housekeeper you think you are, stop and spring-clean your marriage often. You’ll improve its value by 100 per cent.
Search me, O God, and know my heart; test me and know my anxious thoughts. Point out anything in me that offends you, and lead me along the path of everlasting life (Psalm 139:23-24 NLT).
What areas of your life or marriage need spring cleaning? What other “spring-cleaning” tips would you suggest? Which ones are the hardest to do?