Mindfulness Day 2: Mindfulness with Your Spouse
Now as they went on their way, Jesus entered a village. And a woman named Martha welcomed him into her house. And she had a sister called Mary, who sat at the Lord’s feet and listened to his teaching. But Martha was distracted with much serving. And she went up to him and said, “Lord, do you not care that my sister has left me to serve alone? Tell her then to help me.” But the Lord answered her, “Martha, Martha, you are anxious and troubled about many things, but one thing is necessary. Mary has chosen the good portion, which will not be taken away from her.” (Luke 10:38-42, ESV)
Husbands, love your wives, as Christ loved the church and gave himself up for her. (Ephesians 5:25, ESV)
“Therefore, a man shall leave his father and mother and hold fast to his wife, and the two shall become one flesh.” So, they are no longer two but one flesh. What therefore God has joined together, let not man separate. (Mark 10:7-9, ESV)
When eating out at a restaurant, I am sure most, if not all, of us have at times noticed a couple who appear to be out on a date. Instead of engaging in conversation and enjoying time together, unencumbered by the responsibilities of life, they are both just staring at their phones—no conversation, no eye contact, no memories being made, just mindless scrolling. Fun date night! None of us would ever do anything like that, right? Right…
Life can get pretty busy. Whether it’s work, the kids, keeping up that gym routine, responsibilities, commitments, all that good stuff, they can come at the cost of our marriage. It can be all too easy at the end of a long day to just lie down on the couch and stare at our phones until it’s time for bed. Just as with our families, we owe it to our spouses to be mentally and physically present as often as we can be.
Being physically present with our spouse means so much more than just existing under the same roof. It means going to events together, taking the time to have date nights, going on walks in the evening, planning quick out-of-town getaways, reading together, praying together, etc. The important thing is that husband and wife are doing things together.
Of course, we understand that being present is more than just being in the same room or even going out somewhere together; it means being mentally there as well. What’s the point of going out on a date if all we’re thinking about is everything that needs to be done at work tomorrow! In Luke 10, even when Martha was physically present in the room, her mind was seemingly back in the kitchen, focused on the preparations she felt needed to be made. While Mary sat at the feet of the Lord Jesus and listened to His teaching, Martha was off in her own little world.
Sometimes work needs us for a few extra hours that week, friends want to get together on a weeknight, we need to take some time and prepare for something, or we just need a few moments of peace. There are occasions when it’s necessary for couples to be apart, but we need to make sure that we are intentional when it comes to the time we spend together—intentional in setting time aside and intentional about making the most of it when it happens. Our relationships will be strengthened, love for each other will grow deeper, memories will be made, and we will be fulfilling God’s ideal of a man and a woman leaving their parents and clinging to each other. It would be my prayer that, in all the busyness and craziness of life, each of us would work to be a better spouse when it comes to being physically and mentally present with one another.