Recently, Yvonne and I made a trip to the Nashville, TN area.
As some of you know, we moved from Asheville, NC to the Cincinnati, OH area back in March.
Over the course of packing, planning and purging, we discovered that some little issues had come up that we didn’t realize was causing undue stress for both of us.
This “highway” ride to Nashville proved to be a time that we were able to open up and share our hearts with one another.
Life is truly like a highway. We will experience detours, pot holes, traffic jams and road blocks.
Yvonne and I have discovered that as long as we’re traveling this highway of life together, that we can “stay away from the guardrails.”.
Course, while in the car for 6 hours- we were a captive audience!
But it was a safe place.
Seems “road trips” have always been good for us. Back while I was still commuting 5 1/2 hours to meet the Soul’d Out bus each week, there were several times that Yvonne and I traveled together and we used those trips as an opportunity to open up to each other.
Oh there are times while we are at home that we share our cares, concerns and complaints, but those long trips are a time that we can connect and strengthen our marriage.
I must confess to loving long trips in the car with my husband. Crazy, right? Well, now that we don’t have the obvious drive of 7 hours to see family or 6 for work, I’m a little sad to not have those drives. Although, I am sure The Lord will provide those opportunities in another form.
I guess it is being in the car where there is : no texting, no tv, no phone ringing ( we try not to take casual calls during our time together) and being confined to such an itty bitty little space that , for us, creates a little cocoon. That close knit snuggle feeling you get on a rainy day has become car rides for us.
We usually don’t listen to music all that much. We will listen to sermons via Bluetooth in the car or we just talk.
I confess. The car rides at night in the wee hours of the morning after a performance are my favorite. We actually got to the point that we would opt to drive instead of stop and get a hotel room because we both realized the drive was our couple time. Now, mind you we travel with two Tweens most of the time. However, we are usually tuned out due to their technology driven entertainment.
The most memorable drive was new year’s morning of 2013. We headed home from KY with it sleeting and praying to make it far enough south before it started to freeze. We hit a quick White Castle drive thru (Don’t judge) and kept pushing towards home. Maybe it really started on the drive to the venue. We listened to several mini sermons on the topic of marriage. We do this all the time. Do not wait until you have an issue to seek advice. I wrote “we” just now and backed up because I really need to put “I”. So, lets start again. “I” had had a difficult year. I had emotional injuries I kept trying to lay down. I kept picking pieces of them back up I suppose. At points, I felt unheard or unseen over the last year. So…for me. I needed a touch of true healing in my heart.
My husband started out the drive by starting with an apology. Wow! Not that he doesn’t apologize if he hurts my feelings in general. But I thought- Wow! God loves us. I had prayed for this trip to give us a turning point ( ok , I should have put me instead of “us”). Sometimes I just pray for God to let Bryan “hear” my heart. I had prayed that exact thing that evening. New Year’s Eve I had waited on for months. I wanted this year behind us. And he starts out the drive with ” I need to apologize to you.” It was the wording of the apology. It was “I’m sorry for not hearing you. I’m sorry you felt “this way”. Details omitted. I had been heard. He heard my heart. That was the most glorious healing drive. I know I was finally understood because the behavior changed. That’s how we know, right? When we are heard we see it through action.
I was heard. I had said the same thing before – yet I was not completely heard. I was heard in pieces but not in whole. On that drive, I was heard in whole. Thank you Lord for the opportunity to share my need, to my husband for hearing me and to my husband for showing his “hearing” through actions. I love you dearly Virgil Bryan,
We realize that we are far from experts on marriage and admittedly we don’t always get it right, but we feel led to minister to married couples.
Do you still “date” each other? Do you set aside time for a dinner or lunch together or maybe a walk thru your neighborhood?
Do you have a time where you are able to communicate and connect with your spouse?
Do you have a safe place? We all need a place where we’re able to open up and share our hearts and it won’t be used as a “beat up session”.
The more we communicate with our spouse, the better we get to know them. We never stop learning and growing and we must make an effort to draw close to them.
If we stop connecting and communicating with them, someone else will.
Don’t “sweep things under the rug.” We have found that when you do, a huge lump is formed under that rug, and eventually you’ll fall on your face tripping over it!
Yes, “Life Is A Highway”- choose to enjoy the ride!