Couples only have a short time to enjoy the dating and engagement phases before they take on the new responsibilities of wedded bliss. Though marriage can be a huge blessing, it is also very different than dating. I miss those carefree days when Eric and I would sit together and dream about our future. I love him to pieces, but I miss the butterflies in my tummy phase of our relationship sometimes!
It is important to make the most of these days because they are not coming around again. Lord willing, wonderful adventures await you; but, at times, you will miss being single.
Having said that, I think couples should strike a balance between sweet bonding time and serving others. Both are important. Below are seven ways couples can be a blessing without sacrificing their special time together. Giving to others and bonding with your sweetie should not be mutually exclusive – and it does not have to be! Hopefully, you and your love will get the itch and carry this helping vision into your marriage.
- Babysitting – Get ready for some fun, some experience, and some hard work! Children are a blast, but being responsible for them is enough to wear any mommy or daddy out completely! For the parents of little ones, there is almost nothing you can give them which is more exciting than a date night. A night without potty-training, constant questions, and Dr. Seuss might be just what your friends need. It can be a team-building experience for you guys, and you can observe how your boyfriend or girlfriend interacts with children (and how they may parent your children someday).
- Group Bible Study – Several years ago, Eric and I weekly had a couple over on Saturday mornings for a Bible study. It was a great time for all of us. We were able to fellowship and bounce around questions and ideas. Consider gathering a group of friends, or hosting a Bible study for younger folks you want to mentor. You may aid in changing the course of someone’s life.
- Gift Bombing – This is one of my favorites. In fact, I wrote about gift bombing last January. How much fun would it be to plan a special gift for someone and execute a surprise delivery? One morning, as I was leaving for work, I noticed gifts leaning up against my door. Even though they were belated Christmas gifts from a friend, there was a spark of excitement. Who does not get dazzled by the sight of brightly colored packages? I would love to go on a gift-bombing mission with Eric about once a month!
- Helping People Move – This is a big one. Have you ever had the daunting task of securing volunteer movers? Two happy faces and four willing hands are a beautiful sight to people who are living out of boxes. Sometimes helping people move can be fun! You get to fellowship with others – and there is often free pizza and soda involved for the helpers. Also, you get to make an otherwise very stressful day run much more smoothly for those moving. Not to mention, you may need to move sometime soon yourself! It is good to have moving buddies!
- Hospitality Ministry – Do you and your sweetheart have a gift for hospitality? Even if you do not have guests over to one of your homes, you can involve yourselves in (or head up) a hospitality ministry – taking meals to shut-ins, running errands, creating gift bags, welcoming visitors to your church, helping with church events, or even handing out bulletins on Sundays.
- Dog Walking – Okay, so this one may seem like a stretch, but I think it is a terrific way to bless older folks; people with injuries; busy moms; and, of course, the doggies! A walk is super healthy for you both; so, if you are already heading out for a stroll, why not take a few pups along? You get time together, a workout, and some puppy therapy – free of charge!
- Help with a Friend’s Wedding – There is always one more task to be done at a wedding. Willing bodies who can help with decorations, heavy lifting, and anything else the happy couple needs are in high demand! You can gain ideas for your wedding, spend time together in a romantic setting, and help someone have a fantastic wedding day!
As long as you are breathing, you have a powerful ability to bless; so, imagine the good you both can do when you team up and combine your strength. A giving mentality will be an ongoing gift to your relationship.
To lead a healthy life, we must have balance. We need to eat healthy, exercise, give priority to our spiritual life, build relationships, keep learning, and give without thought of return. If we ignore one of these, our entire life will be out of balance and can suffer.
What about you? Are you and your sweetheart living in a healthy balance? If not, what needs to change to help you achieve this balance?
If you are not already doing so, I hope you and your special person will cultivate a giving spirit and encourage each other. What can you do this week to make a difference?
How will you keep your time together sacred while still using your relationship to help others?