This last week held some wonderful milestones for our little family. Our sweet girl celebrated her second birthday, and Michael and I celebrated our ninth anniversary–all on the same day! We have walked through much together in these last nine years, and my hope and prayer is that Michael and I will have the gift of continuing to walk together for many, many decades.
One thing that Michael has learned about me in these past years is that I am, by nature, a celebrator. I love any excuse to throw a party, share a special meal, or take a short trip. I grew up in a family full of celebrators, and I also think that God values celebration: his Son’s entrance into the world was marked by a heavenly chorus of worship and joy, Jesus loved to share meals (with sinners!), and the end of all time will be marked by a wedding feast. God is, by nature, abundant and generous. The best kinds of celebration are full of those things, too.
And this past week, when Michael surprised me with a surprise stay at a favorite hotel and dinner out, I was reminded, again, at how important it is for us to celebrate each other. The time away as just the two of us–even thought it was less than 24 hours–focused us, again, on the beauty and power of marriage. We reminisced on all that we have walked through in the last years; we dreamed about what is ahead. And we praised God for the gift of one another, celebrating Him and the Us that He has been making. It was a gift.
Here are ways that we can celebrate one another in marriage–in big and small ways, every day of the week:
1. Celebrate the small things. Praise from a boss on the completion of a project? A child that is finally potty-trained? Overcoming a personal obstacle? Look for ways to celebrate each other–search for ways to celebrate each other. Our marriage has been one in which we have come to enjoy celebrating one another, not just on anniversaries and birthdays, but for any number of reasons. Celebration doesn’t have to be big all the time, just intentional. An unexpected cupcake is a great way to celebrate a small victory, as is coming home with balloons to acknowledge the end of a challenging week!Look for ways to celebrate each other--search for ways to celebrate each other. #marriage… Click To Tweet
2. Celebrate what you love about one another. One of the worst patterns we can fall into as spouses is focusing on what we dislike in our partner. We can become nit-picky, discouraging, and frustrated when we think about all that we don’t like in person we married. Instead, choose to celebrate–not just acknowledge–the wonderful aspects of your spouse. Is she a woman who is gifted in hospitality? Consider celebrating her abilities as a host by buying her something that will encourage her gift–a new set of sheets or a cookbook she’s been eyeing. Write her a note telling her that you see and appreciate how hospitable she is with others–and that you want to encourage her gift. Is he artistic? Purchase an art class voucher for him at the local community college, or set up a mini work space in an unused space in your home. Write him a note acknowledging that you value his artistic abilities and that you celebrate him pursuing that gift!Choose to celebrate--not just acknowledge--the wonderful aspects of your spouse! #marriage… Click To Tweet
3. Celebrate in unexpected ways. Does your spouse love camping but you avoid sleeping under the stars? Consider a mesh of what you both love when it comes time to celebrate something big: perhaps glamping could bring your worlds together! Is one of you a die-hard sports fan while the other could care less? Consider getting tickets to the big game and give the gift of your time and attention to what your spouse loves for an evening or weekend–knowing that the celebration will mean that much more to your partner. When we stretch ourselves to celebrate the other in ways that are outside of our comfort zone, we may find ourselves surprised at how much fun we have!
No matter what type of celebration you bring into your marriage, the important thing is to celebrate the gift that you have in one another. Any marriage that stays together and honors the Lord is a miracle in itself–worth celebrating any day of the year!