Hall of Fame basketball coach John Wooden once said, “The best thing a father can do for his children is to love their mother.”
I didn’t fully grasp the meaning of this quote until I was doing a seminar entitled “The Family Matrix” at a summer camp for high school students.
I started the session playing a fun game with them called “Would You Rather?” I gave the group a series of two choices to pick from such as, “Would you rather be completely invisible for one day, or be able to fly for one day?” If they chose to be invisible, they had to run to the right side of the room. If they chose being able to fly, they would run to the left side of the room.
“Run to your right if you’d like to live in Narnia. Run to your left if you’d rather go to school at Hogwarts.”
“Run to your right if you’d rather hold a snake. Run to your left if you’d rather eat a spider.”
Since we were talking about family relationships I finished with this question. “Run to your right if you could have your deepest wish fulfilled. Run to your left if you could just know that your parents were passionately in love with each other.”
I have to admit I was a little shocked when I saw over eighty high school students and their young adult leaders all run to their left. Every single person in the room preferred “knowing their parents were passionately in love with each other” over “having their deepest wish fulfilled”.
Then I understood what John Wooden was talking about.
“Husbands, love your wives, just as Christ loves the church and gave himself up for her” (Ephesians 5:25). Giving of ourselves to our spouse has an incredible impact on our kids. Developing healthy loving habits can help us grow stronger together.
This has been one of the key themes of a retreat that I do for couples called the Marriage Booster Retreat. On this retreat, we often ask couples to brainstorm healthy habits that might help fan the flame of love in their marriage. Then we have them break down the list into things they can do on a daily, weekly, monthly, or yearly basis to strengthen their love.
Below are some of the most popular habits couples on our retreats have shared. Take a look at these and see if any of these might be a good fit for you and your spouse.
Healthy Habits of Couples
Once a Day
Once a Week
Once a Month
Once a Year
Use these examples to come up with your own list of daily, weekly, monthly, and yearly habits that you would like to incorporate into your marriage and family. When you do, you will find that both your marriage and your children will benefit. If you think of other habits that you do, please share them in the comment section below and we will add them to the list.
And let us consider how we may spur one another on
toward love and good deeds…encouraging one another.