Have you seen this episode of Modern Family? It’s the one where Cam and Mitchell are out on a date and they’ve set the rule that they can’t talk about their upcoming wedding, jobs, or Lily (their daughter) for the entire evening…and basically, they find out they have nothing to talk about outside of those topics. My husband and I have laughed hysterically at this episode more than once in the past few weeks. We can totally relate to this scenario. Maybe you can too?
You see, my husband and I work for the same international missions organization and we’re together almost 24/7. We’re in the same staff meetings, planning outreaches together, talking through discipleship curriculum with one another, and participating in ongoing training and equipping as a team of two. It adds up to a lot of hours spent together focusing almost solely on our jobs. And as a result, it’s become increasingly more difficult to leave work at work when we have extended free time together.
Just last Wednesday, as we were out on a date, we hunkered into a booth, ordered our drinks and desserts, and then blankly stared at one another. It was my husband who broke the silence with the Modern Family scene. We laughed because it was true, we knew on that evening we didn’t want to spend our time talking about work or to-do lists at home, but for the life of us we couldn’t think of anything else to talk about.
And in all honesty, we both knew we really did have a lot to talk about. It had been a challenging few days, I would even go so far as to say maybe even weeks, and there was a whole slew of conflict to be resolved. We both were in need of a heavy dose of truth and some loving affirmation.
We had gone weeks operating on the same page as far as our jobs were concerned, but had neglected our relationship with each other in the process. We had subconsciously decided that because we worked together all day we somehow knew everything there was to know about one another. It was a false perception, but it was our perception none the less.
After we laughed about the Modern Family scene, I broke the ice and plunged towards the conflict we had been avoiding. And while many of you are thinking, “you chose to do conflict resolution on date night?”, it was better than it sounds.
That night, sitting in the crowded, dimly lit cafe, we put our work completely aside, left our to-do lists at home, and we connected like we did back when we were just dating. We intentionally pursued each other, we spoke truth into our hurts from the past weeks, and we showed that we honestly desired to listen well to the felt needs of each other. It was a perfect evening in a very "we’re imperfect" persons sort of way.
We work together. Yes, in our jobs, but more importantly, we work together to point each closer to Christ. To refine one another. To make Christ the center of our relationship. We work together in this marriage thing. We work together learning how to pursue one another, love one another, and fight for one another.
I’m curious to hear from you married (or single) ladies out there on this one.
How do you balance work/life with your husband?
How do you bless your husband in the midst of demanding work lives?