Tony Miltenberger is a husband, father, and follower of Christ. He is currently serving as the lead pastor at Restoration Church Centerville, ohio.

Three Things the 4th of July Teaches Us About Relationships

This past weekend it felt as if the entire nation stopped and celebrated the largest birthday party ever for America. Maybe it is my awareness, but it seems as if more and more people are celebrating this holiday with fervor. For example, this is the first time I’ve ever seen a TV special about fireworks on network television. While I didn’t watch the show, it did remind me that people want to celebrate, they want to rejoice, and they want to come together for the greater good.

I believe that the principles that make the 4th of July so much fun can also be applied to your relationship. Here are the top three:

1.     Remember that you are on the same team. One of the things that makes the 4th of July such a big deal is that there is no competition with anyone else in the country. Everyone gets to be on the same team, and people love it. People love to wear the American flag as clothing, and when the entire country does it together people rejoice. When is the last time you and your partner remembered that you were on the same team?  So often we get into fights, disagreements, or just feel as if we’re in opposition. Take a minute to remind yourself that we are in this together.

2.     Be in awe together. One of my favorite parts of this celebratory day is that it ends with groups of people sitting down and being in awe. I think there is something special about that moment, and as I sat there with my own family I realized that I was in awe of something I could never do on my own. Be in awe of something in your life! Awe starts with gratitude. What are you and your partner thankful for? How are you celebrating it? Write down what you can be thankful for and then sit in awe of it all.

3.     Have a play date. Part of what makes the 4th so special is that it almost feels as ifthere is a ceremonial obligation to celebrate the holiday. Between cookouts, camping trips, and boating excursions, it seemed as if America mandated a play day. We need that in our relationships too. We need to take some time to have fun, to date one another. If you aren’t intentional about having fun with the person you are supposed to spend the rest of your life with then who will?

So many of us get caught in the rut of life that the opportunity for fun is missed or, even worse,  intentionally forgotten. Relationships need fun, awe, and unity in order to survive. Being intentional about those things will give you the chance to keep things healthy even in the most stressful of times. Don’t miss the chance to provide a little extra explosion of them in your relationship!

What are you learning from the 4th of July?

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