Plus 5 ways to enhance your marriage with a “coffee date”
As a spouse your greatest desire is to have a strong and successful marriage. Marital success comes with different arrangements.
Right? I mean, there's a lot that constitutes a marriage. So let me ask you: Is your marriage strong?
To some, a strong marriage means love, peace, fun and of course – happiness. For others is having enough money to have enough things in order to meet the needs and have fun.
There are couples that believe that when trust, commitment and character are practiced, then a strong and successful marriage is working.
This is true, but there’s a trick to this.
For my wife and me having a strong and lasting marriage was and still is, at the top of our list.
To us, it means to trust each-other, love each-other unconditionally, to complete each-other and enjoy each-other as well as support each-other in everything.
In a nutshell, success for our marriage is simply to compliment and complete each-other in everything.
This sounds simple but as you know – there’s more to it than the idea of just compliment and complete.
When I was a teenager I used to admire a couple in our church who, to me, appeared to have an amazing marriage and a great family.
The couple had two kids - a boy and a girl. They were both late teens to young adults.
Amazingly enough, I never spoke to these people other than “hi” and “bye.” It was a large church and I was rather shy on top of that.
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However, in my strong skills of “observation” I noticed that The Mitchells had a strong and committed marriage and family.
It was like a knowing I had in my heart. Their behavior with one another was also exemplary at church.
I always said that I wanted a marriage and a family like theirs.
About twenty years later, I spoke with one of my cousins who knew them well (to my surprise).
As I began to share with her my observations at that time, she said to me: “Alex, they were, and still are, all that you said, and then some.”
She then expressed: “And you’re not too far from that, either.”
I was flabbergasted. My marriage and family dream is coming true.
Of course, I knew better. I knew that struggles, short-comings, and such that we face and have had to work through.
Guess what? We're still working on our marriage masterpiece through some of those struggles and short-comings. But that's part of marriage too.
Thank God we’ve had a great marriage of 28 years at the time of this writing.
But we’ve found something rather weird about our marriage building.
In our daily routines we discovered that we enjoyed doing things together. We’ve always enjoyed each-other’s company. So we worked on building it strong.
Marriage is good, but marriage requires work!
This person you decided to stay committed to for the rest of your life requires your undivided attention.
In our journey we found that one of the ways we enjoy working on our marriage (besides all the other common things) is the fact that we enjoy coffee and we enjoy drinking it together.
Yeah, I know – nothing major, but the outcome surprised me.
I have given a ton of advice in some of my premarital and marital counseling sessions in the area of building or rebuilding their marriage relationship, but this one never occurred to me – until now.
Not long ago my wife made a comment to somebody as to how much she appreciated her husband for making her coffee each morning. She said that she felt the love poured into it with no strings attached.
This was meaningful to her.
I got to thinking about that. I’ve been making our morning coffee for probably 7 or 8 years now. We thoroughly enjoy our organic five-espresso dark coffee every morning.
And… oh yeah, did I mention that my wife and I both like and enjoy our coffee?
Ok, so here’s how we work hard at our marriage along with a cup of coffee.
After our morning workout and two mile walk, we come home and I make the morning coffee. We then sit in the front porch of our log home enjoying our morning brew.
It’s been during these times when we've had the most extensive conversations (except when out on a date or when working on our marriage and family vision).
The kids are usually in bed at this time, so it’s quiet. The birds are chirping, the outdoor cat comes to say hello, and the morning country smell is just right for the occasion.
It has been during these morning “coffee dates” that my wife and I have worked on our marriage – without even realizing it.
We often read a devotional book that deals with marriage. It has great content for the day and scriptures to go with it.
We then discuss the devotional and often elaborate in other areas that still pertains to the main subject.
It’s been during these morning “coffee dates” that we have established a tradition for our marriage that we hate missing.
Sometimes is just not suitable, you know, like in the winter months or when I have to leave early in the morning to an appointment or something.
So here’s what we do and How Coffee Can Help You Develop A Strong Marriage:
1. We read together.
This is when we read and talk about the subject at hand regarding marriage. Most often, we go into details during our conversation, of things that most couples don’t even talk about. We hit some hard areas – sometimes. In the end we come to a greater understanding and appreciation of what we believe.
2. We pray together.
Once we're done reading, we usually pray together.
Years ago, around the age of 17, I heard my pastor then say: “a marriage that prays together stays together.”
Along with that he preached a series that he called it: “The Family that prays together stays together.”
And you know what I’ve discovered? He was right!
So we pray together and if one of the kids comes by to say “good morning” or something we have them join us in our prayer time.
Of course we have family prayer time before bed time, but that’s different – and probably another blog post for another time.
3. We plan together.
During our morning “coffee date” we often plan our day or different events. Some of these events include the rest of the family but sometimes it’s just for us two.
4. We laugh together.
It’s amazing how little couples laugh together. I think most couples argue more than they laugh – this is tragic. So we laugh at our silliness. Sometimes I pick on her – since that’s part of my nature – to pick on people. Ha!
5. We plan our meals together.
Yeah, can you believe that? Is that weird of what? Well, truthfully, my wife often ends up asking me: “so, what do you want for dinner tonight?”
Often, my usual response is: “I don’t know.” Typical guy.
There is much more that we do during our morning “coffee dates” that I might eventually write another post about it.
I realize that for most people morning “coffee dates” are out of the question due to conflicting schedules.
I recommend for you and your spouse to find a time during the day or in the evening to have your “coffee date.”
It doesn’t have to be in the morning. It could be any time. That is if you can tolerate caffeine in the evening, and if you even like coffee, for that matter.
Here’s another idea – it doesn’t have to be coffee either. It could be hot tea, hot chocolate, ice tea, or whatever you want it to be. Whatever you and your spouse enjoy drinking casually, use it!
Make that a special time where you enjoy your spouse without being rushed – for 1 hour a day (or more if you have the time). It’ll do wonders to your marriage to pay attention to your spouse and be able to communicate, feel, and discover various desires of their hearts.
This is one activity we both look forward to every morning.
Question: What other ways do you use spend time with your spouse on a daily basis to work on your marriage? I’d like to learn other ways too.