This year’s Marriage Week theme ‘Naked Marriage’ might sound a bit risqué to include in a church newsletter but on further reading we see that it is pointing us towards the essentials of our relationship. This sounds better…and it may well be risky not to try this closer examination of our marriage.
We do know from Genesis 2:25 that before humankind tried to be independent of the Father’s ordinances, they were confident in their skins: “Now the man and his wife were both naked, but they felt no shame”. As couples, enabling each other to be whom they were meant to be, they pointed to the greatest meaning of our lives: living without unnecessary clutter and really being ourselves!
As a married couple, we have to find balance when being drawn in different directions. With the demands of work and home, and with the pressure to socialise or to block out diary time for fun with the whole family, can anyone tell you what the essentials are for YOUR relationship? We don’t think so – but we do know some important principles.
One of the things about being ‘naked’ is not being covered up – seeing things as they really are – seeing “me” as I really am and seeing “us” as we really are.
With this in mind – can we uncover ourselves to reveal who we really are? That might be difficult enough but then besides uncovering ourselves to ourselves we must also communicate that “real me” to our “real other”. Now this is getting complicated because there is the “real me”, the “me I appear to be” and the “me I’d like to be” – and that applies to my partner too. Among these many persons communicating with each other there are going to be a lot of opportunities for misunderstanding!
Shall we make it simple? – Let’s sit down together (yes, let’s put an immovable date in the diary even!). Together let’s open our hearts to invite The Spirit, who is ultimate truth and reality, into our lives.
Let’s eat together, let’s talk; listening in turn to each other. Let’s have fun together and pray together.
We really like the Marriage Encounter method that begins by talking with paper and pen – try these questions one at a time; write, swap, read, really read, smile, kiss, talk more – and talk for as long as you like before you tackle the next question:
- Tell me three highlights of the last week?
- What has made you smile or laugh recently?
And, stripping back to the essentials…
- What is at the centre of the “real us” as a couple in love? (hopes, dreams, work and principles)
This might help us focus on the essentials of our unique loving relationship. Praise God!
Enjoy focusing on your ‘Naked Marriage’ this week!
See www.marriage-week.org.uk for date night ideas, conversation starters, and to see the ‘uncovered series’ and more.
Please do pass this on to other couples, family members, friends and groups who might like to look at the essentials of their relationships.
This blog was written by Annette and Paul O’Beirne, from Teams of Our Lady, who are also part of the Alliance of Catholic Marriage Organisations.
For more information on the alliance please visit: www.allianceofcatholicmarriageorganisations.org.uk