Thanks to social distancing many couples are being forced to actually live together. I say forced because before COVID-19 couples were used to coming and going and spending very little time together in their own homes. Unless you work with your spouse, you probably spend more time away than together. Going to work, commuting and whatever other activities in the course of a day are enough to leave very little time for connecting as a couple. With the exception of essential workers, we have all been encouraged to stay home. Staying home means couples and families are actually learning to live together like never before.
Let’s look at the word “LIVE” and see what it really means. To live is to dwell or reside. To dwell is to stay as a permanent resident or for a considerable time. When we add the word together it means that we are dwelling or residing at the same time, simultaneously. Psalm 133 says, “Behold, how good and how pleasant it is for brethren to dwell together in unity!
Before COVID-19 many couples and families were spending very little time dwelling/living together. Unfortunately, some actually like it that way because they feel like less is best. However, let’s focus on the positive and take on the challenge to actually “LIVE” together.
L = Love and learn as much as you can about your spouse and your children. Find out what makes them feel loved. What’s their love language? (Gifts, Quality time, Words of Affirmation or Acts of Service) Make every effort to give each family member the love that they need. I have heard several couples say that for the first time they are actually learning what their spouse does at work. If you have school-aged children, be sure that they are continuing to learn. What are you learning during this season?
I = Imitate Christ. Ephesians 5:1-2 says, “Therefore be imitators of God, as beloved children, and walk in love, just as Christ also loved you.” This means that we should imitate Christ. What are some of the things that Jesus did? He fasted and prayed, praised God, spent time in the presence of God, He was kind, humble, compassionate, forgiving and went from place to place sharing the Gospel. Jesus was willing to do the will of His Father. He loved the unlovely, he supplied needs, did to himself to meet the needs of others, He had mercy on people and extended grace. Wow! I could go on and on but imagine if we would just put some of these things into practice. The more we imitate Jesus, the positively our homes will be impacted.
V = Value each other and this precious time that you get to spend together. To value something or someone is to consider it to be important and beneficial. People are losing loved ones left and right, life is too short not to value the time that we get to spend together. Your children will not always be this age, value the time that you get to spend raising them, nourishing them, training them and educating them. Don’t look for someone else to do it, you do it! You take this time to value every person living in your home. You will never get this time again. This too shall pass.
E = Enjoy each day that God wakes you up. Enjoy eating meals together. Enjoy each other’s presence. Enjoy exercising. Enjoy entertaining each other. Enjoy God’s presence, provision, protection and His power. Know that He has a purpose and plan for us being home.
A WORD FOR SINGLES
Living together should be totally reserved for marriage. I know we live in a world where living together before marriage is widely accepted. However, if you are a Chrisitan Single, your goal should be to please God even in your living arrangements. There are so many reasons why you should NOT practice living together before marriage. The number one reason should be enough. It simply does not please God nor does it line up with His Word. In addition, studies reveal that there are so many disadvantages. I encourage you to be obedient in this area.
Blessings to you!