Day 7: Diversions

Begin with the Prayer of Abandonment. (Have you memorized it yet?)

Today’s theme is “diversions.” A bit of an overlap from yesterday . . . but whereas we “dream” together, a good marriage includes a variety of physically and spiritually healthy diversions, both together and independently.

One Christmas I splurged and got Craig a camera he’d had his eye on for some time now. It was more money than I’d ever spent on a Christmas present. But watching his eyes light up, and seeing him play with the lenses and filters with all the excitement of a kid with a toy train, I knew I was investing in our family’s future memory bank.

From that moment, the pace of our family outings slowed. “Hold on, Heidi! Let me get this shot!” he’d call to me on one of our family walks, fiddling with the lenses again as Sarah and I struck a pose and Chris pulled up the hood on his jacket. Maddy was the only one who seemed to enjoy it . . . other than Craig, who reveled in getting the perfect shot. DSCF0569

It can be a real temptation for any couple, as their family grows, to get so caught up in the merry-go-round of sleep-eat-work-eat-sleep that we forget what it is to live. What diversions do you most enjoy, that have gone by the wayside? How can you strengthen your relationship just a bit more today, by taking it up again?

While healthy diversions can do a great deal to strengthen a good marriage, toxic diversions (explicit movies or books, excessive drinking, or becoming overly invested in work or volunteer commitments) can wreak havoc on our relationships. Is there an area of concern here? If you’ve raised the issue before and have been unable to settle it, consider making an appointment with your pastor or a marriage counselor to discuss it.

“A clean heart can see God, can speak to God, and can see the love of God in others,” writes Mother Teresa. “When you have a clean heart it means you are open and honest with God, you are not hiding anything from him, and this lets him take what he wants from you.” (p.27, “Lent with Saint Teresa of Calcutta.”)

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