The Pursuit of Understanding
Then her husband arose and went after her, to speak kindly to her. Judges 19:3
Pursuit of one's spouse is a vital ingredient in romance, and we're not referring to chasing your spouse around the house seeking affection. Rather, we are talking about the pursuit of knowing your spouse deeply.
Pursuing your spouse reaps great marital benefits. For example, knowing your spouse's pain allows you to give effective comfort, which results in closeness. Knowing how you can meet your spouse's other needs can lead to romance.
Here is one wonderful account of a husband and wife growing closer to one another through taking the time to pursue understanding of one another's ways.
Sheila and Walt had been married fifty years when they flew in to participate in one of our Marriage Intensive sessions. Together they had enjoyed raising their children, growing in their faith, building a business, and traveling the globe. But their marriage lacked romance and affectionate courting. Something held Sheila back, and Walt's feelings of rejection compounded his workaholic tendencies and resulted in occasional outbreaks of intense anger. Sheila's hurt and loneliness increased. Thus the cycle continued.
Two days into our workshop the couple began to find freedom and healing from decades of pent-up hurt. Sheila revealed a traumatic and abusive childhood experience she had not shared with anyone for more than sixty years, and Walt wept as he gained a new understanding of Sheila's indifference to affection. By the time of the couple's scheduled Saturday night date, both of them enjoyed affection. Courting had returned to their marriage!
Walt and Sheila discovered that truly understanding your spouse—which takes time and empathy—is a vital part of a romantic, courting relationship.
In what areas do you need to pursue better understanding of your spouse today?
Lord, might Your plan for our oneness be all that You desire it to be: spirit, soul, and body.