June 3, 2010
On my way into work this morning, I was driving next to a beautiful, shiny, new Volvo XC90. As I sat there dreaming of the day that I might have one, I laughed. Why is it that something new is always so appealing? I looked around my car, which is only four years old and realized that when the ‘newness’ wore off; I stopped taking really good care of it.
How many other things do we stop taking care of just because they aren’t new and exciting anymore? Is it our house, is it our relationship with our children, is it our job, is it our marriage, is it our friendships or is it our relationship with God? We become complacent with life and what we have. And just when we become complacent, something new and shiny appears that we think we need. That’s when a choice has to be made: Either chose the new and exciting thing or make an extra effort to renew the old thing.
Marriage is one of those things that can easily get ‘old.’ I whole heartily believe in putting effort into marriage to make it work for the long run. Am I perfect at it? No way. But it’s all about effort. About a year ago, I had some friends who were struggling in their marriage; life had turned into a routine. I gave the husband this advice: “Go to the grocery store right now. Pick up pasta salad, lunchmeat, bread, candles and wine. Set it all up in the basement on top of a blanket like an indoor picnic. Women need to be romanced.” He did. He also renewed his marriage by doing things that matter.
Whether it is marriage or religious life, effort matters. God needs to know that He isn’t ‘old’ to you. Sometimes it takes going on a retreat, sometimes it takes changing up your prayers, sometimes it takes talking to a priest, and sometimes it takes joining a bible study. Whatever it takes, it will be worth it. The soul needs renewal.
“The proof of love is in the works. Where love exists, it works great things. But when it ceases to act, it ceases to exis
t.” – St. Gregory the Great