weeks 20 to 24

I didn’t expect THIS, did you?

It’s Father’s Day. I am behind on my blog. So I woke up this morning and decided today is the perfect day to share the post I promised on how our marriage has blossomed as a result of working together.

We came into this major life change knowing we would have tough times. I grew up in a family business and have experienced first hand how difficult it can be to work with family. We weren’t naive and prayed frequently for God to protect our marriage and family.

What we did not expect was how it was going to profoundly bless our marriage almost immediately.

The simplest but most powerful change is that we are no longer the ships passing in the night we were when we worked two different jobs, had two sets of work goals, and went 90 miles an hour for at least 50 hours a week. We rarely talked about work due to kid activities and just not having enough time. Now we actually know what is going on in each other’s lives, in some cases down to the tiniest of details.

These days we not only share life goals, we share work goals. Bill and I wake up each day excited to achieve them all and support one another. It is super fun, and while I am enjoying a new career and all of the learning that comes along with it, my excitement for it has also renewed Bill’s love of what he does. He is seeing the real estate business through the fresh eyes of a newbie and is able to celebrate the simplest of milestones with me.

The “fresh eyes” also extend to the way we see each other. We have both been able to see sides of one another that we never were able to observe before. After 15 years of marriage we are still learning about one another. And now we learn at warp speed as a result of working together.

Last week in a client meeting I went on and on with how impressed I have been with Bill’s negotiating skills, to the point where he coached me afterwords on toning it down a bit. It may seem like a sales technique, but I meant every word. Each day I am more impressed with how good my husband has become at what he does.

It’s pretty sexy, actually.

Which leads me to the last area of blessing I will discuss. Warning- this next section is for mature adults who appreciate what I will share as a way to bless a relationship committed in the bonds of marriage. I am blushing as I write this and questioning whether its appropriate to share, but its on my heart as something other couples who work together may find as a blessing as well.

The office is where affairs of the heart and flesh often begin. I think a primary driver is people you work with get to see and appreciate neat things about you that your spouse may not even know exist! People also spend a great deal of time at work. It should not surprise us that it often leads us into sin.

I have jokingly been telling people that I want to have an affair with my husband. And it’s going very well indeed.

And this is the biggest surprise so far! Working together has significantly enhanced our romantic life. Early on we created a rule about not working past a certain time based on guidance from friends who work together. We found ourselves frequently violating the rule, unable to leave work at work.

After only a few days of talking about our business late into the night we decided to set up a “punishment” for every time we talked about work past a certain time. Just as it is with our kids, consequences can be a great motivator. I won’t share the details of what this punishment is, but let’s just say it’s not really a punishment at all and has led to much greater intimacy in our relationship. While we have veto power for this consequence, we rarely use it and are having a blast.

Of course not everything is perfect. There was a morning in the beginning when I was brushing my teeth with sleep still caked in the corner of my eyes, when Bill came into the bathroom intensely concerned about whether I planned to take an early morning showing that we had double booked. That morning led to our first work fight and a new boundary.

No business talk until Mama has coffee.

But a few mornings later we were both brushing our teeth after working late in the night (and paying the consequence for it) when Bill turned to me and said “I knew working together was going to be good, But I didn’t expect THIS, did you?

No. I did not. And that is what I love about our God. When you follow his plan and step out in faith he so often blesses you in ways you never would have expected. We are grateful.

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