Thursday, July 16, 2009

Your Romance in Rhythm

I recently read a very thought-provoking book entitled Your Life in Rhythm, by Bruce Miller. Miller theorizes that the balance paradigm--trying to give equal time and energy to all the various aspects of our lives--is a recipe for disappointment and unnecessary stress.

Instead, he advocates paying attention to the natural rhythms of life and then learning to live within those rhythms. Look deeper and it’s easy to see the rhythm patterns in the everyday (waking up in the morning, mealtimes, your work routine, end-of-the-day rituals, bedtime), in the flow of a typical week (workdays, weekends), in the change of seasons through the year, in the life stages we all go through from birth to death.

The stages of a romance also have a certain rhythm: meeting, courtship, deepening love, marriage, starting a family, comfortable familiarity--and probably several phases of cycling between romance and disillusionment through the years. I believe one of the keys to a lasting marriage is recognizing the seasons, or rhythms, of romance and making the most of each one.

If you’re newlyweds, relish the passion, but don’t expect to keep up that intensity for the rest of your lives. If you’re new parents, you’ve entered a season of marriage with demands on your time you may not have been fully prepared for. But the children grow up--through a whole bunch of crazy and challenging seasons of their own!--and one day you find yourselves empty-nesters . . . and possibly wondering, Who is this stranger I’m married to?

Since these marriage rhythms are predictable, it makes sense to plan for them instead of chafing against them. What “season” of marriage are you experiencing right now? What pitfalls have you identified? What do you enjoy most about this season? Are there any expectations you need to release to live in this season more fully?

“There is a time for everything, and a season for every activity under heaven.” --Ecclesiastes 3:1 (NIV)

1 comment:

  1. This sounds like a very practical book that we could all glean from. How do I do from a writer hat to a Mimi hat to a madly-in-love-with-my-husband hat? Embrace the moment. Wow!
    Thanks for a beautiful reminder, Myra.