It may be a little early, but last weekend spring emerged at our house. Daffodils popped under the mailbox, a pair of doves sat enthroned on the flagstones, and a warm breeze jingled the wind chimes. Jeff and I found our way outside with hedge trimmers in hand, making good on our promise to the dry hydrangeas. We did some overdo pruning and uncovered some unknown problems. It seems the stump by the porch rotted away this season past, and my fertile rosemary turned to a woody limb. We dragged off leaf litter and talked over options of what to do with the stump carcass. New seasons have a way of revealing the need for maintenance.
- Maybe one of you took a new job, or maybe a life change took you to a new state.
- Perhaps a health problem launched you on a new lifestyle.
- You could’ve added a child to your family by foster care, adoption, or pregnancy.
- Maybe children you raised finally left home.
- Or maybe one partner retired from a career.
- Perhaps you changed churches or committed to a new ministry.
Any major life change turns the calendar page in a couple’s life.
Our earthly bodies are passing away. Each new season reminds us of the irresistible process of change, and that can be hard for a husband and wife. Instead of smiling at the future, a wife might long for days gone by. Instead of caring for his wife as his own body, a man may mourn the loss of his younger physique. As seasons change, so do we.
The refining fire of transition stretches and tests a couple, giving them the opportunity to know each other in new ways, to grow together, and draw closer. Some couples resist change and find themselves feeling like strangers and drifting apart. Each season brings challenges and beauty.
“For everything there is a season, and a time for every matter under heaven.” (Ecclesiastes 3:1)
I can’t wait to tackle that ugly stump by our front porch, (I’m afraid it’s not Jeff’s priority in this season …) but until it’s gone, I’m going to let it remind me that all seasons are beautiful.
Seasons: A few things I’ve learned
- We have to communicate how we’re feeling
- We can help each other understand it
- We change, so we have to get to know our “new” partner
- We carry our same values to each season
- We give each other perspective
- We have to be honest about our thoughts
- We need unconditional acceptance in uncertain times
- We may need older mentors to guide us
- We should turn to God’s truth as our reference point
- We can embrace new seasons, without devaluing the old
(If you need a reminder of the sweetness of the seasons in marriage, and you don’t have your own stump, this is your invitation to stop by. We’ll drink tea on the porch and talk about the sweet parts of this season, the last, and the ones to come.)