Day 15: Busyness, Ministry, and The Myth of Quality Time
Missed some posts in this series? You can read them here.
Do you sometimes get too busy? So busy you wonder if you or your marriage will make it?
The kids were at their wits end. They were tired, they were cranky, and they were just plain out of sorts. And of course stressed out kids mean a stressed out mom too.
It felt like I had suddenly become a single mom. No my husband hadn’t left me (and believe me I realize there is a difference) he had just been mostly gone. For two weeks straight.
The kids had barely seen him, and I had only seen him for a few minutes here and there before he’d run out of the door in the morning and when he’d come to bed, after I was already sleeping, at night.
No my husband wasn’t working long hours. He wasn’t going on business trips. He was serving God. And for a few weeks every summer this is our lot.
In addition to working full time to provide for my family, my husband is an ordained minister and we’re transitioning to full time ministry. But unfortunately transitioning to full time ministry often translates to working like crazy at the “real” job then putting in more time in “service for God.”
We’re busy, and it’s hard. Really hard sometimes.
For you it might not be ministry, it might be school activities, homeschooling, or church commitments. Anyway you slice it though there are seasons in our life when we will be busier than others.
Letting busyness rule your life though can spell disaster for marriage and family. Don’t let this happen to you.
And don’t be fooled by the myth of “quality time” either. Let’s be real I’d rather spend two hours talking about nothing with my husband than 10 minutes of “quality” conversation. Quantity time is quality time, period.
So how exactly do you make more time for your spouse, when you’re busy? It takes work. It takes planning, and it is so worth it. Here are a few ideas to get you started.
1) Cut out the nonessential activities, in favor of spending time with your spouse. Yes girls night out’s and man cave time are important but if it’s a busy week (or month) it’s not the right time for these activities.
2)Turn off the T.V. Yes it’s tempting at the end of long days to turn on the T.V. but finding other activities that are relaxing (a massage maybe?) and that facilitate communicating rather than merely proximity are so much better for your marriage in seasons of busyness.
3) Plan a date night or family day before the dreaded busy week(s) get started and one after it ends. Seriously plan it. Don’t just say you’re going to do it, schedule the sitters write it on the calender and plan what you’re going to do ahead of time. Knowing that at the end of a crazy week or month I get to have a great family day then a date with my husband is a life line.
4)Make time for prayer. If you have a busy week/month then you don’t have time not to pray with your spouse. Yes it can be hard, but it’s so worth it.
Now it’s your turn. What tips do you have about how to carve out more time with your spouse when you’re too busy?
Oh wow, sister, I hear you. I’ve been a pastor’s wife for a decade now, and I had no idea how much it would cost our family sometimes. It’s so true that we have to know when a crazy season is coming up and cram in a bunch of time before it happens. Your list is great advice!!
Thank you so much for the encouragement, I’m definitely not an expert in this territory.
Love your tips, KM! You definitely have to be intentional with your marriage and family when you’re pouring into so many others.
This was for me today! My husband has been in ministry for almost 9 years and a senior pastor 4 of those 9. He also works a full time job and trying to transition into full time ministry. We have an 18 month old and 4 year old. Many times I feel like a”single parent”. We are very busy it seems all the time! I’m definitely taking your advice and scheduling those date nights and family nights! We need them!! I thank God for these posts, they have came at a great time!! God bless you and your ministry!!
Thank you so much Brittney.
LOVE and NEEDED THIS!! My husband and I are in the ministry as children’s pastors as well as we run the outreach ministry. We are part time but, as I am sure you know, when in the ministry whether you are paid full time, paid part time or volunteer, you WORK full time. On top of the ministry, my husband works a 40 hour a week job, I homeschool our four kids and babysit another and I have a blog ministry that includes a magazine. Oh and our kids play sports. Our lives are full to the max. Life is getting more and more busy with each passing year. But we have to be intentional about spending time together. It is so important. Thank you for the reminder and encouragement!!
I think the most important thing is knowing we’re doing God’s will and seeking His wisdom. If it’s His will it can fit in the schedule, if it’s not it’s a distraction.
KM…wonderful post! Loved your tips for being intentional in your marriage and time together as a couple. Thank you for sharing.
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