Participants: Mike and Gayle Tucker
Series Code: MGH
Program Code: MGH000083B
00:01 Welcome back.
00:02 We are talking about Mottos for Marriage.
00:05 Mottos that make marriage work.
00:07 We've been sharing with you things
00:09 that our Facebook friends on Mad About Marriage
00:11 have shared with us
00:13 that has made their marriage work.
00:15 And we've been talking first of all about a section
00:18 that, well, first it was choose.
00:21 To choose to be connected.
00:23 And now we're connecting. Connecting.
00:25 Yeah. And then we will talk about communicate.
00:28 But right now, it's connection
00:29 and the first motto was simply be nice.
00:32 Just be nice.
00:33 Just be nice.
00:34 And so let's from there, let's go to the next motto.
00:36 Well, the second way to connect has to do
00:38 with literally connecting with time
00:41 because it says, never stop dating your spouse.
00:45 Never stop spending the time to go out
00:48 and do something special.
00:50 Never stop dating in terms of wanting to let them know
00:54 how special they are, you know,
00:56 and thinking of wonderful things to do together.
00:58 Yeah. You know, that accomplishes several things.
01:00 First of all, it does give you
01:02 the time to focus on each other.
01:03 The dating, the rule for dating is
01:05 you can't talk about business.
01:06 You and I work together, so our dating rules,
01:09 we can't talk about church talk or business talk
01:12 or, you know, a ministry talk.
01:13 Well, since we are--
01:14 Yeah, we're both pastors, that's all we can think of.
01:16 Yeah. That's all, that's all there is.
01:17 And so usually we have to start,
01:19 we're talking about the children
01:20 because that's the only other thing,
01:21 you know, our grandchildren,
01:23 that's the only other thing we can think about that,
01:24 to talk about that's not work-related.
01:25 But it's also not a time to solve problems.
01:27 This is just a time to connect and to have fun.
01:30 And that does something for us.
01:32 First of all, it does spend that time together,
01:33 so that we can connect
01:35 but also it keeps the romance alive.
01:38 It keeps the fun alive and the romance alive
01:40 as you realize, I'm with somebody
01:42 I really like being with.
01:44 You know, dating was the thing
01:46 that brought you together in most cases.
01:48 In most cases.
01:49 Not for everybody but for most people.
01:50 They started doing things together that they enjoyed.
01:53 And, you know, that time was dedicated to one another
01:56 and that's one key about this too,
01:58 that you have to have some dedicated time.
02:01 I need time with you that I,
02:03 where I put everything else aside,
02:05 it's just time with you.
02:07 Because those are the moments that we make memories together.
02:10 That's right.
02:11 And, you know, again in our world today,
02:13 even today a great many marriages
02:16 are arranged marriages.
02:17 And that still has happened for people
02:18 we know in this country as we're in the United States,
02:21 but it's also happening for people all across the globe
02:25 who are watching perhaps this program,
02:27 maybe with dubbed over language,
02:29 that's okay too.
02:30 But the truth is that even in those arranged marriages,
02:33 we encourage them since you didn't take before marriage,
02:36 date after marriage.
02:38 Make sure that you have time just simply to play,
02:42 to have fun, to do something fun together.
02:44 Take the time to be with each other.
02:46 Never stop dating your spouse.
02:48 Yes. And that's really the definition of a date.
02:50 It's time together that is focused on each other
02:53 and an enjoyable time.
02:55 And it can be something very simple
02:57 as long as it's something that the two of you
02:59 enjoy doing together.
03:00 Because it gives you time for conversation,
03:03 gives you time to explore the other person's world,
03:07 what's going on with him right now.
03:10 Gives you time to just know them better.
03:12 Explore their opinions, their values.
03:15 And there is never a time when we don't stop--
03:18 I'm sorry, when we don't need to get to know each other more.
03:22 We have to continue getting to know each other.
03:24 And a part of that is because
03:26 the person you're married to today
03:27 is not the same person you married
03:29 however many years ago because that person is changed.
03:31 Would change. Yeah.
03:33 So in practical terms,
03:35 what do we do if we want to start dating our spouse?
03:38 Well, here's my suggestion.
03:40 It's that both of you sit down and make a list of the things
03:42 you just really enjoy doing.
03:45 And I'll make my list, you make your list,
03:47 the things that I would really like to do with you
03:49 and you make a list of things you would like to do with me.
03:51 And then we exchange lists.
03:54 And then we... So I have your list now?
03:55 Yeah. You got my list, the things I want to do.
03:57 And then we take terms.
03:58 First week, I'll find something on your list
04:00 and I'll make it happen for us at our date.
04:03 And the next week, you find something on my list
04:05 and you make it happen for us on our date.
04:07 And it doesn't have to be anything that cost money.
04:09 These can be free things to do.
04:11 Oh, yeah. Very simple things.
04:12 Yeah, very simple.
04:14 But I will take responsibility for making something
04:16 you want to do with me take place
04:18 and the next week you do the same thing for me.
04:20 And I think it's really helpful
04:22 when we make it a regular thing.
04:24 So, because you can look forward to it.
04:26 You know, we may be horribly busy,
04:28 we may have so much going on.
04:29 We don't know how we are gonna get everything in
04:31 but I can look forward to for us,
04:35 which is usually Thursday night.
04:36 You know, I can look forward to Thursday night
04:38 no matter how busy I'm,
04:40 how much we are separated from each other.
04:42 Thursday night, I know we're gonna be together.
04:44 So making it regular, I think it's helpful.
04:46 Now, you know, there are some people listening to this
04:48 say, "Well, have children.
04:50 How do we get away from the kids
04:51 because, you know, it's just impossible?"
04:53 And again, if you can't afford a babysitter,
04:56 which a lot of people can't, you are on a tight budget.
04:59 That's sometimes where church comes into play.
05:02 If you've got another family in the church with children
05:04 about your children's age, you can say,
05:06 "We will keep your kids Tuesday night
05:08 if you keep ours Thursday night."
05:10 And it doesn't mean they have to spend the night there,
05:12 just enough time for us
05:13 to have a couple hours together to do something fun.
05:15 Even a couple of hours. Yeah.
05:17 So you baby-sit for us for one night,
05:18 we will baby sit for you the next time.
05:21 We will trade off that way.
05:22 Both save the money and still both have the opportunity
05:26 to take time together.
05:27 And if you live close to extended family,
05:29 that's an other opportunity as well.
05:31 There are all sorts of options that you can engage in.
05:32 There are.
05:34 And this is something that you just have to be
05:35 intentional about.
05:38 It's something that's not gonna happen on its own.
05:39 You have to be intentional.
05:41 And that's another thing that I like about the list idea
05:43 because it makes me intentional about thinking about you.
05:46 What can I do for Mike that he would really enjoy?
05:49 What can you do for me?
05:51 And it just draws us closer in that way,
05:54 it's another point of connection.
05:56 The other thing it does is it's just nice to have fun.
05:58 It is.
05:59 It's just nice to, you know, forget about work,
06:01 forget about the kids for a while
06:03 and the worries of the world
06:04 and just go be with someone I really enjoy being with
06:06 and simply do nothing both will have fun.
06:08 One of the reasons this is important,
06:10 I know it's important for women because women spell love
06:13 differently than men do.
06:14 They spell it T-I-M-E.
06:16 But another reason is important for men is that
06:18 men bond through shared activity.
06:22 Women tend to bond through shared emotion
06:24 but men bond through shared activity.
06:25 So when you do something active especially with a man.
06:28 Notice how men bond together?
06:30 They go play golf, they go hunting, they go fishing.
06:33 You know, they go to a ball game.
06:35 They do something together. They work on a car together.
06:37 They, you know, those are the kinds of things
06:39 that men do and they feel closer together as a friend.
06:43 They share the activity
06:44 and therefore they share the experience.
06:46 And so women, if you want to bond with your man,
06:50 you know, do something active with him.
06:52 Engage in that, whether it's bicycle riding or walking.
06:54 It's even sometimes easier for a man to talk
06:56 if he is doing something active.
06:58 Men talk better when they are playing catch
07:00 than they do when they are sitting knee to knee with you
07:03 and looking you and sweating profusely.
07:05 Feeling emotional.
07:06 Feeling emotional that could be overwhelming for a man.
07:09 So I think that's another thing,
07:11 it's to make sure that
07:13 these are active things for men.
07:16 Look back on the list of things
07:18 that maybe you did when you were dating.
07:21 If you haven't gone on a date in long time,
07:22 what are the things that we enjoyed doing together?
07:24 Look back at that list and do them.
07:26 Take your first date again. Yeah.
07:28 And I think the fun factor is huge too.
07:30 You know, sometimes spontaneity enters in here.
07:34 I can remember back when we were pretty young,
07:37 we just, we had one baby.
07:39 I think she was about,
07:41 you know, six or eight months old,
07:43 something like that.
07:44 And we had been out of town at a youth camp.
07:46 And we've been doing some work there,
07:48 doing some youth presentations and things.
07:51 And when we got done we were...
07:53 we packed up our stuff.
07:55 We are driving out of the gate of the camp
07:58 and for some reason,
07:59 we've never done anything like this before.
08:01 For some reason, we stopped there at the gate of the camp
08:05 and he looked to me and said, "What do you feel like doing?"
08:09 "Well, I don't know.
08:11 You want to do something fun?"
08:13 And, you know, we were just planning to go home
08:15 but we said,
08:17 "Well, we could turn that way and go home
08:19 or we could turn that way and go to San Antonio."
08:22 And we did, we went to San Antonio.
08:24 It was just a very spontaneous thing.
08:27 We went down there, we found a place to stay for a night.
08:31 We walked on the river.
08:32 Yeah. We just enjoyed it.
08:34 It's a great river walk in the city of San Antonio.
08:36 And a lot of good restaurants there
08:38 and it was just a romantic time for us together.
08:41 And I think it helped us realize
08:43 that we could do something spontaneous.
08:45 Even with a baby. Even with a baby.
08:47 It was something that we had not even thought of before.
08:51 And yet it was a memory for us.
08:53 We made a memory that we've never forgotten.
08:55 So never stop dating your spouse.
08:57 There is another motto that we need to get to
08:59 before this program is over.
09:01 And it's "Don't forget
09:03 the third person in the covenant."
09:04 That came from Tracy. Yeah.
09:06 Tracy said, "Don't forget the third person."
09:08 Who is the third person?
09:10 Now that's always God, isn't it?
09:11 And by the way, there's, you know,
09:13 preachers have said this for years,
09:15 "Family that prays together, stays together."
09:16 And this kind of thing.
09:18 Actually there is research that demonstrates
09:19 all of this as true.
09:21 That if both husband and wife are spiritually minded
09:26 and they practice that together.
09:27 They share their religious values
09:29 and they practice them, especially
09:30 when this is a grace-based approach to religion
09:33 rather than a rules-based or performance-based,
09:36 that it results in much higher levels of marital satisfaction.
09:41 And so, but there is a second level of marital.
09:44 First level is that both husband and wife
09:46 do this together.
09:47 If you ought to be second best scenario,
09:49 it would be of only one of the two parties could be spiritual.
09:53 It needs to be the husband.
09:54 He has the second highest levels of martial satisfaction.
09:57 So if only one of them is? Yeah.
10:00 It's better for the family if it's the father.
10:02 If the father, yeah. Wow.
10:03 If he is the spiritual person, you get the second best level
10:07 of marital satisfaction.
10:08 Best is if both mother and father.
10:09 Absolutely. Husband and wife are spiritual.
10:12 But if only one can be,
10:13 the second best level of marital satisfaction is
10:15 if he is the spiritual one.
10:17 Third best is if she is the spiritual one.
10:20 And the worse is if neither one of them have experienced
10:22 any sort of spirituality.
10:24 And this tends to make the entire family
10:26 happier, right?
10:28 Spouses and children report being happier in marriages
10:31 where there is spirituality.
10:34 So we know that the research is in.
10:35 And the research, time after time after time have validated
10:39 this particular premise that we, that as preachers,
10:42 you and I both preached about for years.
10:44 You know, "The family that prays together,
10:45 stays together and make Christ the center."
10:47 Well, the research actually backs it up which, you know,
10:50 big surprise that research will say,
10:53 "Well, God was right all along, who knew?"
10:54 You know.
10:56 I remember a family that I grew up with
10:58 and we grew up with the kids,
11:00 we went to school with them and stuff.
11:01 And the husband and wife, you know,
11:03 the mom and the dad were not on the same page spiritually.
11:07 The mom was a believer and a church-goer,
11:11 the dad was not.
11:13 And there was always this disconnect,
11:15 there was always a pull in that family
11:18 where the mom and kids were doing one thing
11:22 and dad was doing something else.
11:23 And they never felt connected.
11:25 And then eventually, his heart was changed and he found Jesus.
11:32 And I remember very distinctly the day that he came forward
11:37 in church and gave his heart to the Lord
11:39 and it was just this huge day of celebration for all of us.
11:43 But then we watched that family from that point on
11:46 and it was just a 180.
11:48 You know, they began,
11:50 they had always been close and loving one another
11:52 but now they have a common bond with the Lord
11:56 and throughout the rest of their lives really.
12:01 They maintained that until the day
12:03 that she passed away not long ago.
12:04 It makes a huge difference.
12:06 And you and I have seen this over and over again
12:08 with families where there is division
12:11 with the religious values and spirituality.
12:14 It can cause conflict, in fact.
12:16 But where they are united,
12:18 where the two of you unite together and worship
12:20 and in prayer and in practice, it changes everything.
12:22 I tell you another place where this helps,
12:24 because marriages always go through, you know,
12:27 take you through ups and downs
12:28 and sometimes the down is a big down
12:31 and especially if there is something huge to be forgiven.
12:34 And in counseling, as I've helped couples
12:36 work through the process of forgiveness,
12:39 the steps of forgiveness and working through,
12:41 making sure that this is all taken care of.
12:43 Once they have said the "I forgive you's"
12:46 And, you know, "I'm sorry and I forgive you,"
12:48 then sometimes we will seal that forgiveness
12:50 by doing something special.
12:52 The three of us alone and the pastor study
12:55 will have communion.
12:56 And as they wash one another's feet,
12:58 I talk about the example of Christ,
13:01 washing away the past, washing away our sins.
13:04 And there they are washing each other's feet
13:06 just like Jesus washed his disciples' feet.
13:08 Such a sweetness.
13:09 Oh, there is a sweetness.
13:11 And then the partake you of the bread and the wine.
13:12 And as we do that I share with them what this symbolizes,
13:15 Christ body broken for you covering your, your sins,
13:18 he has taken it away.
13:20 He is the sacrifice for you.
13:22 Christ blood shed for your sins.
13:24 And very often when I do that, I realize after that is over
13:29 and we are about ready to have the prayer,
13:31 I realize that I'm an intruder.
13:34 There are four in the room and there need to be three.
13:36 I need to absent myself
13:37 so that the Holy Spirit can be with these two
13:40 because the moment is far too intimate for me to share.
13:43 And so I just walk out at times.
13:46 We should never forget that third person in that covenant.
13:48 He makes all the difference in the world,
13:51 all the difference in the world.
13:52 We recommend Him to you as well.
13:55 Make Him the third person in your covenant
13:57 so you can be madly in love forever.