The month of February came and went; however, I can't let it go without sharing with you something that's very dear to our hearts. MARRIAGE. Marriage, in our opinion, is the essence of two individuals (man and woman) coming together with a public commitment showing they will make their relationship last, to well…. the very end…. "Until death does us apart.” We believe in love and we believe in growing better together. That's right, we are two flawed individuals, nevertheless individuals committed to each other. Committed to loving in the good and the bad; however, willing to forgive, love, enjoy each other, and do all the fun things we dreamed of when we dated.
Libni and I have 11 years growing stronger because we made the decision to invest in each other every day. Every day looks different and every day has its challenges. However we look for ways to encourage each other, take time to spend together and get to know each other. The small pleasures of everyday kisses, hugs, text messages and small gifts (which may seem very small investment) are what make our lives so joyous together. As you can tell we are in the details! And these details have a great impact to our emotions while we go on with our busy lives! You should try it! :)
Those small details led us to be fawn of each other, and led us into conversations that would encourage us to learn and grow. But we did not start knowing this. It took time, planning and discomfort in our initial stages of marriage to want to look for ways to improve in our marriage. Do you know that feeling? The feeling that says "I want a healthier marriage."
At times Libni and I would take time to talk about messages we heard from a conference or share highlights from a book. Sometimes we would just have time for a cup of coffee in the mornings, other times we go somewhere to have coffee together. Because of different schedules coffee was/is not possible, however being intentional about our time together made a big difference and we learned to cherish our small amounts of time together during the day differently. These pockets of time were so special because we were intentional to making it happen. We learned to work our schedules to have lunch together and spend a few minutes hearing about our day was/is so important in building and lifting each other up.
Our struggle was finding ways to spend time as a couple away from the kids and work. When we experienced the fulfilment, unity and love in our marriage because of these moments, we started longing (desperately) for these moments. It is because of these unique moments that we now treasure, that we highly suggest for you to learn to prioritize in investing in your marriage in a way that would benefit you and your spouse! Everyone is different and we encourage you to find what makes your marriage better.
We DO NOT have it all together. We are still growing and learning to invest in each other. And guess what happens if you invest in each other? You and your spouse would start growing deeper in love with each other. How do we know? Because that is exactly what happened to us and we feel more in love every day. But it doesn't stop there, we see our relationship stronger!
So, you may be asking what are some of the things we listen to? To begin... the XO Conference is an awesome resource we had the opportunity to attend. It is an annual event/conference that provides so many tools, input, and examples of real life couples who have worked at improving their relationship to succeed. XO Conference is now available in different locations throughout the year. If you are interested in knowing where they will be next, click here. If you can not attend, they have resources available for you. We guarantee that you would not want to miss their live events! They are a blast!
Another tool we use a lot and recommend to all our brides when we meet with them about their wedding photography, is the “5 Love Languages.” This tool was very instrumental during the early years of our marriage. It helped us focus on the “we” rather than “me.” It helped us understand how each of us give and receive love (the things we do to show our love and appreciation.) It’s a tool that we still used today and I encourage you to give it a try if you haven’t. (Hint: there is a short /easy quiz that “GUYS” can take).
A new tool for us, was the book on strengths'. The book on what makes you unique. This book/test helped us understand each other and how we naturally operate. These are the God-given individual characteristics that makes us who we are. This resource is called "Strength Finders" . After taking the test, Libni and I found how different we are from one another. Don't get me wrong, we knew we were different, but what clarity comes from confirmation from the results of our test! Now we can better understand why we do what we do so naturally. Seriously, eye opener!
To go a little deeper, our pastor Allen Kelsey joined Jimmy Evans (founder of Marriage Today and XO Conference) to connect the dots for couples; what does the strength finders reveal about you and your spouse and how you can use this information to improve your relationship within the marriage. So powerful! Their book is called "Strength Based Marriages". These resources are SO beneficial!
I hope you enjoy this post and grab hold of all the tools provided on this blog. THANK YOU for reading along. We do hope you continue to pursue working on your relationship. We pray that this encourages you to go deeper in your marriage. Your happiness is worth it. Your spouse is worth it. YOU are worth it!
If you are not married and still read through, THANK YOU! We believe this information can gear you for marriage.
Libni & Abrahanny