Are You an “Emotionally Present” Spouse?

devotional_emotional-distance.jpgBeing emotionally available to our spouses is absolutely essential to a thriving marriage… but it is also one of our greatest challenges.

We’re all stressed by overcrowded schedules and lofty expectations.  We come home from work emotionally exhausted from holding our tempers, biting our tongues and rolling our eyes all day long to keep peace with our colleagues.

So, when we get home … we don’t have too much emotional energy left … or worse … we pull the plug on our emotions and disconnect from our spouses putting them in a state of emotional isolation.  What seems to be a positive solution to our personal issue with stress … becomes a negative and destructive consequence in our marriages.

So it makes sense for us to ask:  How can we keep our emotional batteries charged so that we’re ready to give and receive emotional messages?  How can we stay emotionally available to our spouses?  Let’s look at three answers from the Bible.

First, schedule some time to be alone with yourself.  Jesus advised His disciples to get away to a quiet place so they could re-charge their batteries so they would have something to give the multitudes they were ministering to everyday.  Maybe you can find some quiet time during your busy work week or your commute to and from work.  Turn off the noise and just be quiet to take some time to think and pray.  Or …go to lunch by yourself so you can enjoy some peace and quiet … Find a block of time everyday to be quiet.  Just for fun start making of list of the ways God shows His love to you during these quiet times.

The second way to replenish your emotional strength is to “play” … to do something you find fun and relaxing.  Each of us is different … some love to run … or exercise vigorously … others would rather stroll in the park …or cast a line into the water.  What is the physical activity that helps you release tension and recharge?  Put some time each week into your schedule to make that happen.

Proverbs 17:22 tells us that laughter is a good thing.  What makes you laugh?  Do you have a favorite program or video that you and your spouse can sit down and laugh through together?  Is there another couple, or group of friends, that you find yourself laughing with?  Be sure to spend some time enjoying the gift of laughter.  It will not only help you re-charge your emotional batteries … it will make your spouse smile!