Roller coasters are popular rides in amusement parks throughout the world. Amazingly, they are believed to have been built as early as the 15th century. While they can be great fun, they must still be treated with care. Over the years, mishaps have tragically caused irreparable harm to many.
Marriage, like a roller coaster, travels the track of life through highs and lows and across sudden twists and turns. Many expect to have the thrill of a relationship without taking the responsibility to care for it. But marriage, too, requires proper attention for it to traverse the rails safely. A failed marriage can cause lasting damage to all of those involved.
The source of roller coaster accidents are the very same ones that lead to marital problems.They are caused by either rider misconduct or from a lack of maintenance.
While all parties may behave poorly, it is only our own behavior that is within our control. Whether our roller-coaster car is going up or down on the track, the behavior we choose has a critical impact. We can either make a behavior choice that takes risks with our relationship or we can keep it secure by:
Encouraging- Our words and actions should build our partner up, not tear them down. The world is already against them. We need to be the one who is always there for them, supporting and believing in them.
Forgiving- Proverbs teaches us that it is a benefit to overlook an offense. This is especially true in a marriage. Put it into regular practice, and once forgiven leave it in the past.
Serving –We need to each have a servant’s heart for the other, giving thought to how we can make their day or situation better. It’s the little things that often have the biggest impact.
Regardless of circumstance, what we do or fail to do is completely up to us. We always have the power to behave well.
Instead, be kind to each other, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, just as God through Christ has forgiven you.
Lack of Maintenance-
Rider conduct may rest with the individual, but maintenance is a two person job. God intended marriage to be a relationship garden of Eden, a paradise for a husband and wife. He instructed Adam and Eve to “tend and guard and keep” the literal garden, so too must we tend and guard and keep our marriage.
Dedicate time- Spend time together simply being a couple. This is not time to talk about the kids or our personal needs. Just be together. Life is crazy and it may be hard to find the time but marriage is the foundation of the family. When we neglect to give it attention, it becomes unstable. Be it five minutes or five hours, make it happen regularly.
Remain unified- Keep the focus on what is best for the marriage. This may be different than our personal desires. We should not allow ourselves to be divided by the children or others nor should we hide things or keep secrets from each other. We are on the same team and need to act like it.
Pray for your marriage- Regular prayer for our marriage will ensure we are not in the roller coaster car alone. God will be right there with us. Pray not to change our spouse, but for us to be changed into the spouse they need to become everything God created them to be.
When we provide our marriage with regular maintenace, we ensure that the roller coaster is free to travel the tracks smoothly.
And the Lord God took the man and put him in the Garden of Eden to tend and guard and keep it.
Genesis 2:15 AMP
Message for the Journey:
Like a roller coaster, a marriage traverses the rails of life at breakneck speeds, traveling up and down and across unexpected twist and turns. The proper amount of care will keep it from risk. Choose to avoid rider misconduct while you partner with your spouse to afford regular maintenance to your marriage. Together you’ll be able to enjoy the delightful thrill of the ride without suffering tragic mishap.