The wall

November 09, 2019


WHEN a couple has kids, I don’t recommend the husband calling the wife “Mama” and the wife calling the husband “Daddy.” It may be a Filipino thing, but I still remember the wry expression on my mentor’s face when he told me, “How can you make love to a Mama?”

So how can a couple remain close together? Last Sunday I suggested Touch and Talk. Here is one more technique.

Tasks Together. Want to hear my guilty secret? Lucy and I are so low-tech! It’s only this year that we decided to have a website that would promote my books and services. So we hired a very competent website developer who then tutored us how to manage the content. Just a few nights ago, Lucy and I fumbled our way as we dragged, copy-pasted and edited. Would you believe it took us a half-hour to post a 250-word blog? But after seeing the piece published on the live page, we burst into laughter and traded high fives.  

Sure, a spouse can have his or her own thing. Lucy relaxes by gardening while I unwind with DC Comics. But there should be joint projects to deepen the bond. It’s a matter of balance. Don’t feel guilty if you don’t share your spouse’s interest and beg off. Lucy loves movies with wizards and dragons; me, I would rather see Bruce Willis kick behinds. But we don’t resent each other’s choice of genre.

An important task together is prayer and ministry. On mornings where I drive Lucy and myself to our respective offices, we would pray together inside the car. We beseech God’s father for our families, friends, and projects. At home, when an in-law would text us a prayer request about her business, a friend is scheduled for a court hearing, a beloved pastor had to undergo surgery, we paused to pray.  

Prayer is a revealing barometer. When Lucy and I had a spat, we find it next to impossible to pray. We feel like hypocrites approaching the Throne of Grace and yet we cannot dispense grace to each other. That’s why it’s important to nurture the vertical relationship aside from the horizontal.

Ministry is another. Lucy may be more of the supportive type, but her help is indispensable when I would preach at our home church, conduct a workshop, or organize a book launch. I bet that when God will distribute His rewards in Heaven, Lucy will receive a larger haul of crowns than I. I won’t get jealous, because then we will have the unspeakable delight of laying our crowns before Him and – still together! – fall down before Him in worship.

So there you have it. The four T’s to grow closer: Touch, Talk and Tasks Together. They encompass the physical, intellectual, emotional, and spiritual. Do them intentionally and you won’t even be thinking of walls. You will be thinking of highways and bridges.  

But that’s material for another article.

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