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Monday, November 11, 2013

taking risks in the wild ride of an abundant life...

One of the coolest memories I have was when we celebrated my youngest son’s 7th birthday by taking a trip to Disney, California Adventure. We started our fun day with grabbing a park map. We set out our course of action by hitting some “warm up” rides. We capped off our morning by getting wet on the Rushin’ River ride. That was a blast! Since we were all soaked we decided to get drenched even more, so we hit the water park!

We took a break and grabbed some lunch. While we were eating and drying off, I asked my birthday boy if he wanted to hit the roller coaster. He said emphatically, “Oh yeah! Let’s do it!” I questioned, “Are you sure? It goes really fast, it has a few big drop offs and it has a big loop.” 

All of a sudden, my little ambitious one put the brakes on as you could see the doubt start to sink in his mind.  I asked, “What do you think, still want to go?” He answered, with a questionable, “Maybe...” 

After we were done eating, we decided to let lunch settle while we hit a few shows. Then we rode a couple more rides. As we were waiting in line, I asked my son, “Let’s go watch a few runs on that roller coaster to see if you want to go on it. What do you think?” He said, “Okay.”

As we walked towards the roller coaster, I suddenly saw some confidence build up in my daring son’s demeanor. In fact, I began to see a little more pep in his step. We turned the corner, and we all paused. We looked up and I said, “There it is! What do you think? Let’s do this!” Right after I made this proclamation, the coaster came swooping down along with hearing the wild screams. I looked back at my son and he had a huge smile on his face. He looked at me and said, “Dad, let’s go!” I said, “Right on!”         

We ran into the line. We all psyched ourselves up and we suddenly found ourselves only a few minutes away. It was now our turn. We jumped into the seat, strapped ourselves in, and waited for takeoff. I looked over at my son, “How are you doing son?” He responded, “Great! I can’t wait for this to take off.” Right when he said this, the coaster took off with amazing speed! We all screamed!

I looked over a few times at my son, and all I saw was huge smiles and loud screams. He was having a blast and so was I. The ride ended and all I heard was, “That was awesome Dad!” I gave him a high five, hugged him and said, “You did it! You went on that scary ride. I’m proud of you!” My son quickly replied, “Dad, I’m 7 years old now. That was not scary! That was fun!”

As I think about this experience I can’t help but think how similar overcoming our uncertainties and doubts is part of moving into a more fulfilled and abundant marriage relationship. Often times, the challenges of marriage and struggle to find peace in and through this sacred relationship is simply too difficult to bear. Life often gets in the way of our marriage which is when thoughts of fear and panic slowly settle in and if not aware can eventually dry up your marriage relationship.  

There is a better way to combat those frightening moments as we journey through the adventure of marriage life. With all of its ups and downs, spins and loops, drops and climbs, the truth is your marriage relationship can actually grow and strengthen through every aspect of life. Today, it seems easier to throw a marriage away whenever things get tough or difficult. But with the right advice, tools and guidance your marriage has the potential of building a stronger foundation which faces its fears, struggles and challenges together, not separate.  

When we seek positive change in our marriage relationships, we must recognize that the hurdles and the risks are part of the journey. These barriers don’t stand in our way because we realize that it is all a part of the ride. When you pursue the marriage you have always wanted, the risks are not seen as dangerous. Rather they are seen as opportunity.

The first part of facing our fear (in anything) is to simply muster up the courage and strength, often times found outside of ourselves, a lot like my son when he was 7 years old faced with the overwhelming sense of living in a world of Can’t rather than Can. When you and your spouse live n a world of Can, you will discover whether you are young, middle age or older, that the brand new life of togetherness is a roller coaster that you can get on, strap on, stay on and ride!

Unfortunately as we get a little older, we find more excuses as to why we shouldn’t take risks or venture off into changing our limited mindset. You don’t have to be fearful of living out the child within you. Successful marriage is not meant to be scary; it is meant to be lived- to the full! A huge part of understanding this reality is the fact that around the corner is the married life you have always wanted. The truth is it is the life that is well within your reach.    

When it comes to changing the direction of your marriage for the better, you have to take a risk! Here’s the promise though. When you take the risk and jump on the ride of your life, it will be all worth it! I am certain!

Rob Lane
Marriage Mechanic

Rob is proud that his wife Cara plays an instrumental part of what he does. They have a combined 20+ years helping individuals and couples with their relationships and marriages. Rob has a BA in Christian Education from Moody Bible Institute in Chicago and holds a Master’s Degree in Psychology and is an Online Psychology Professor for Grand Canyon University. Rob is also certified marriage counselors in the PREPARE/ENRICH program. He is a non-denominational ordained minister and officiates wedding ceremonies. Rob combines his experience and education along with his unique approach that is sincerely relational, empowering, hopeful, honest and compassionate. To learn more about Rob, The Marriage Lane and his approach read here.


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