Romantic Couple

Do you want a life filled with romance and passion?

Do you like the idea of having a little more adventure? It may come as a surprise, but you actually possess the power to create romance, passion, and adventure in your life. We know from personal experience how this works.

How can you get that power? First, let’s discuss romance in general and some of the misconceptions many of us have. Most people would love to have more romance in their lives, but even their best efforts fall short. This is particularly true for the average guy. Contrary to the belief of many wives we talk to, most husbands are actually very interested in having more romance and passion in their lives and marriages. But one thing we’ve learned about men is that typically they hate to fail. In fact, they often avoid or quit any endeavor if they don’t believe they can succeed.

You possess the power to create romance, passion, and adventure in your life

Many men we’ve worked with say they’ve tried to foster more romance and passion in their marriages, but they often feel their efforts are unsuccessful. So consistently romancing their wives seems too difficult, like trying to hit a constantly moving target. Some days they get lucky, but most of the time their efforts fall flat. So over time, they may quit trying or, at best, give romance only a half-hearted effort.

Obviously, some version of this frustration is true for women, too, even if the patterns might be different. Women often report their lives are anything but the romantic adventures they longed for when they were younger. The weight of too many responsibilities, the struggle to balance work and family, so many people to care for, no time for themselves without feeling like they’re stealing something from someone they care about, and the never-ending daily routine—where’s the romance in that?

The good news is that men and women were created for romance, passion, and adventure, and God wants each of us in the thick of it. He also wants us to feel fully alive and well cared for emotionally, spiritually, physically, and mentally. Fortunately, He has empowered us with virtually everything we need to make it happen.

So what are we missing?

Why is romance often so elusive and confusing? First, we need to examine some of the lies and misconceptions the media and our culture regularly thrust upon us. Candy, flowers, and expensive gifts may help fuel the economy, but they don’t create lasting or satisfying romance. This is true no matter how much money we spend.

What about romantic environments? Imagine you and your spouse are at your favorite romantic location. Maybe it’s sitting together in front of a roaring fire on a bearskin rug on a cold winter’s night, sharing a glass of wine or a mug of hot cocoa. Maybe it’s having dinner at your favorite restaurant with linen tablecloths, candlelight, and Vinny the violin player. Or perhaps it’s taking a walk hand in hand on a moonlit beach on a warm summer’s evening, with stars twinkling in the sky and waves lapping on the shore.

Do these environments create true romance?

No. Whatever the location or however expensive and beautiful the gift, not one of these things can create true romance. And here’s why: If you take two people who have zero interest in each other and place them in that same perfectly romantic environment with lovely gifts and flowers, no romance will happen. However, if you take two people who fascinate each other and stick them in the middle of a Walmart parking lot on a drizzly, dreary evening, you’ll see romantic sparks flying. The essence of true romance is fascination and curiosity!

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That’s why those moments of infatuation at the beginning of a romantic relationship are so compelling. In those moments, you find getting to know each other captivating. All you want to do is be together or talk on the phone as you discover new and amazing things about each other and dream about your possible future together.

Now, just because you can find romance in a parking lot doesn’t mean that is where you should build your long-term relationship. Walmart probably won’t be your favorite date spot in the future. Because if fascination and curiosity are present in your relationship and you include a special ambience with some well-selected gifts, you will surely fan the flames of passion and make them burn even brighter.

Fascination and curiosity can fade over time

For many couples, it can seem as if there is less and less to discover about each other. Things that made your relationship fascinating and adventurous lose their luster as life and routine become more of the norm. The relationship starts to feel like the same song played over and over. You once loved the song, but now it seems old and tired, like annoying elevator music or that looping tune you hear when you’re on hold with customer service. I’ve heard that song so many times, I’m kind of sick of it, you tell yourself. I want something new and exciting.

Here’s the good news: Boredom is entirely of our own making. There is realistically nothing inherently boring in this crazy world. To find someone or something boring, we must essentially turn off our natural curiosity. And that takes some effort. We were all born with a built-in fascination that makes us want to explore and touch everything (and for toddlers, stick everything in our mouths). There is always more to discover! We just need to stay curious, to keep looking for things that can be uncovered and unveiled. So keep investigating the new and the interesting. In the end, that discovery process is what keeps us feeling alive!

In marriage, no matter how much you think you already know about your spouse, there is always more to learn. Even though my wife and I have been married for more than forty-three years, I’m learning new things about her constantly. And just to keep things interesting, she keeps changing! She is growing and healing, learning more about God, and learning more about herself. But that’s okay because I want the romance of discovery to last a lifetime, and I know that staying fascinated in getting to know her more over time is the key. I refuse to let boredom creep into our relationship.

The opportunities to learn, grow, and discover are virtually endless, which is good news if you want your life and your marriage to be a romantic adventure of discovery. And if one lifetime isn’t long enough to fully get to know any human, a hundred lifetimes aren’t anywhere near enough time to fully get to know the Creator and Sustainer of the universe! If you want your faith to stay passionate, remain engaged in getting to know Him.

The recipe for really tapping into all the Lord has for you is to make your life and marriage a romantic and passionate adventure. First, let Him help you get to know yourself as He created you. Allow yourself to be truly interested, rather than viewing the process as a royal pain in the rear end. This will become a key component of a vibrant relationship with God as you allow Him to help you see yourself as He sees you. It is from this vantage point that you will become far more focused, energized, and effective in your pursuit of a life worth living and a marriage you and your spouse both enjoy. You will also discover a reason for living well that is worth the time and energy it actually requires.

Copyright © 2024 Robert S. Paul, adapated from Empowered to Love with permission from Focus on the Family. 

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