Next time you find yourself exasperated with your wife, or feel defeated in terms of maintaining your enthusiasm for the union, take a moment and remember your marriage vows. Better yet, take the time now to make a handy copy you can keep in your wallet at all times. Why? Because marriage is more than a piece of paper, it’s a framework designed to facilitate giving you the best possible experience in a committed relationship. The vows, rather than a list of rules, express the promises, purposes, intentions, and hope the two of you bring into a binding covenant.
If we remember this, and re-read the covenant in that context, it becomes difficult to imagine anything other than joy and passion as the result. Here are 10 ways to joyfully keep your marriage vows.
1. Continually reaffirm your love
Within moments of reading this, contact your wife and tell her you are so grateful she married you and that she is the light of your life.
2. Love your wife with fierceness and determination
“Fierce” in this context means with passion. Passion, like love, often relies on intention before it gets going under its own steam.
3. Learn this definition of “faithfulness” by heart
Faithfulness means fidelity, constancy, dependability, dedication, loyalty, trueness, advocacy and – here it is again – determination.
4. Frame your favorite picture of you and your wife and place it on your desk
Then, take a photograph of your desk and send it to your wife along with a love note.
5. Write out your marriage vows in a letter to your wife
Handwritten notes are golden. Tell her how much these vows mean to you. Then get home early.
6. Break the vows down into bullet points
Then, every day, do something profound to support each point until you’ve gone through them all. Then, start over.
7. Paraphrase your vows into a new, contemporary, document
For example, if you said, “for richer for poorer,” you might write, “I’m committed to you no matter what; if this house was repossessed tomorrow I’d still have a home because you are my home…”
8. Understand the definition of loveLove is not the same as infatuation. Long-term commitment is the most profound expression of love.
Love is not the same as infatuation. Long-term commitment is the most profound expression of love. If you’re looking for hormones to drive the relationship, you will both be increasingly disappointed. When commitment leads the way, infatuation takes care of itself.
9. Celebrate the number of days you have been married
Calculate how many days you have been married and then ask your wife out on a date to celebrate that. Joy is most often found in the small things. Take note of these small things, then relate them to the initial set of vows.
10. Make your own “Top-10” list
Write down ten ways that being married and keeping your promises have bought happiness, peace, and joy into your life. Then share the list with your wife.