A marriage is like a garden. A beautiful garden needs constant attention. It needs to be watered regularly. It requires the skilled pruning of the master gardener. Weeds must be pulled. And the plants need fertilizing. In the same way, we must tend to our marriage. Here are seven ways to cultivate a healthy marriage.
As fathers, we bear a huge responsibility to provide for and protect our wives and children. And providing and protecting go well beyond going to work and providing a home, food, and clothing. Our kids need our presence and love.
Some highly successful business leaders have shared with me their personal stories about the price they paid pursuing what the world defines as being important. They reached the top of their profession only to find emptiness, loneliness, regret, and often deep grief for “time wasted.”
Although stress is not new, the fast pace of the technological age has deceived us. We have all these modern gadgets to make life easier, but they combine to inundate us with stressful stimuli 24/7. Additionally, we are often our own worst enemy by packing our lives so full that we have no margin. When something unexpected occurs, we have no reserves with which to deal with it.
Based on interviews and studies with children and grandparents, it becomes clear that children need their grandparents and vice-versa.
Despite our great plans and advanced study, once we were in the fray, it was “every man for himself.” At times we couldn’t even paddle. We just had to hang on!
Ephesians urges us, “Fathers, do not exasperate your children; instead, bring them up in the training and instruction of the Lord.” (6:4) That’s a short verse with a whole lot of life behind it.
Hundreds of thousands of orphans were in dire need of shelter, food, medical attention, and love. At the end of the war, the Allies developed special camps for traumatized youth. The children developed and grew with the nutritious meals and good care they received. But in one of the camps, the officials became concerned because the children couldn’t sleep. Despite enough food and attention, they lay awake at night, staring at the ceiling.
It’s interesting to realize, we really don’t possess what we have in this life: our homes, our jobs, our toys, our automobiles, or even our family. They are simply entrusted to us for a period of time by a loving God.