As we approach the end of the year…. Some of us will put together new exercise goals. Some of us will find the right Bible reading plan for next year. Some of us will zero in on a new schedule for Bible memorization. All of these are important (especially the last two). Let me suggest one other plan for the end of the year: check in on your marriage.
DeYoung offers 15 questions to help assess your marriage. The list was instructive for Lindsay and I to talk through, and it helped us to pinpoint some good things to be intentional about in 2017. I offer some of our notes here, in the event that they might prove useful to others, just as DeYoung’s original list was for us.
DeYoung acknowledges that his questions are neither “perfect” nor “exhaustive,” and there were a couple of questions that we had to tweak to better suit our context or dispositions. For example, while we don’t really “raise our voices” (Question 11), we can still be insolent. So we rephrased the question to read: “Have you rolled your eyes or used sarcasm against one another in the past month?” Adjusting the question like this instantly prompted us to jump back to number 7 (“When is the last time we said ‘I’m sorry’ or ‘I forgive you’?”)
Question 12 asks, “Are we more eager to spend time with someone [else]… than we are with each other?” Again, for us, this hasn’t been a thing. However, exchange “someone” for “a screen” and we’ve got something worth talking about. (Number 7, again.)
But we weren’t only challenged. Happily, we also identified several fronts where 2016 has been a great year for our marriage.
Our big takeaways for 2017? Some kind of shared experience reading the Bible is important. And taking regular walks together — away from screens — to talk and hold hands, makes all the difference.