24Mar

Marriage Monday: Nobody Owes You Happiness

Hey 20-somethings…and honestly a lot of 30-somethings…

I know it feels like you shouldn’t have to pay your dues, to work hard and long hours to get ahead. I know it feels like you should be able to have everything handed to you.

Wouldn’t it be great if you didn’t have to be on a budget? Wouldn’t it be fantastic if student loans were what so many of thought they were – fake Monopoly money that will one day just magically go away?

Many have labeled Millennials as the most entitled generation yet in history. Speaking as a Millennial, that critique often sounds uninformed and pretentious. However, more often that not, it’s true.

One of my favorite parts of our life right now is our friend group that is sprinkled with people in their 20s and 30s, both single and married. In may ways, our close friend group defies the stereotypical complaints about the Millennials.  Yet far too often, the stereotypes are true.

Today, many in their 20s and 30s are

  • Lazy
  • Easily distracted.
  • Undisciplined.
  • Selfish

This has enormous implications for marriage. I’ve been married for almost 4 years now and the one thing I haven’t gotten used too is seeing couples that have gotten married after us already divorced. It’s also heart-breaking as a pastor to see married couples divorce with young kids. And even though many married couples don’t divorce, the are far from the thriving marriage God desires for them. They simply expect it to magically happen because they married a crush from college or a high school sweetheart.

While each situation is somewhat unique to each marriage, there are many few dangers that lie lurking for Millennials in marriage. This attitude of entitlement, when extended and applied to marriage, puts people on a one-way path to divorce.

Truth: nobody owes you happiness. A thriving marriage doesn’t just happen because you marry whoever you were dating the back half of college. Anyone can survive in marriage. It takes hard work from both spouses to thrive.

A thriving marriage doesn’t happen overnight. But you can start TODAY to move toward one. Here’s 3 ways you can take action:

  1. Date Night: I’ve written about this before, but if you were to do ONE thing on this list, this is it. A date night will do wonders for your marriage. Men, make a plan. Be thoughtful. You don’t need a ton of money or creativity. You just need to be thoughtful and purposeful. Having a plan for date night shows your wife that you’ve cared about her enough to make a plan. ATTENTION MARRIED PEOPLE WITH KIDS: Do NOT take your kids on date night. Hire a sitter. Drop them off at your parents’ house. Arrange a date night co-op with other parents where you take turns watching kids so you and your spouse can have a one-on-one date night twice a month. Go to the dollar theaters. Take a walk in the park. Thriving marriages don’t just happen and one of the things they are built on is regular date nights.
  2. Go follow The Marriage Bed and The Pure Bed on Twitter. They tweet numerous times a day about faith, marriage, and sex – all from a Christian perspective. Share one of their tweets or articles with your spouse AND your own thoughts/applications from it.
  3. Change your phone background to a picture of just your spouse. Put their picture on your desk or in your car. Find little ways TODAY to show off how proud and grateful you are to be theirs.

What would you add to the list?

 

 

 

 

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