Note from Mark Timm, CEO Ziglar Family: This week's blog post comes from our Ziglar Family founding partner, Bill Blankschaen. Proud husband for nearly 20 years and father of 6 awesome kids, Bill is an author, entrepreneur, and founder of StoryBuilders. He's worked with thousands of families as a school administrator, pastor, and counselor and draws upon his life experiences in business, education, and family to help craft content to empower today’s family. Get his free resource What God Wants You to Do Next: 7 Questions to Discover God's Best for Your Life at FaithWalkers.com.
Want a weekend getaway? I do!
How’s your marriage? Mine could be better, too.
A marriage retreat could be just the thing—if only you knew why and how to plan it.
Six kids and lot on our plate can cause me to lose focus on the important stuff in my marriage and family.
That’s why my wife and I take time to schedule a relaxing and romantic weekend getaway. Not just a vacation, but a marriage retreat with a plan and a purpose.
Over the course of our nineteen years of marriage, we’ve learned a few simple truths about why we need to make time for a marriage retreat. We’ve also learned how to plan it.
I share these truths with you—with my wife’s permission, of course—in the hope that you may take your own marriage retreat soon to relax and transform your marriage in a weekend.
Why You Need a Marriage Retreat
Maybe you already understand the need for a marriage retreat. Maybe you wish your spouse did. The rush of the 9 to 5—or, more likely, the 5 to 9—leaves little time to ask the simple question: “Are we going in the right direction?”
For many of us, life just happens without much of a plan. We stir from our relational slumber at key moments—birthdays, holidays, weddings, funerals, etc. Soon our kids are gone and we’re left wondering what happened and who is this person I married so long ago?
Guys, I think we men are especially prone to the temptation to keep moving forward without stopping to ask for directions. Just saying.
Remember the classic adage: “Blessed is the man who aims at nothing for he will surely hit it.” Let’s not go that way. Let’s live our lives with a plan. Let’s get intentional about leaving a legacy we can be proud of.
A relaxing weekend marriage retreat intentionally weeds out distractions so you can take control of your destiny and your family’s legacy.
As Jim Rohn said,
“You cannot change your destination overnight but you can change your direction overnight.”
If you’re still not sure why you need a marriage retreat, ask your spouse. That should do the trick.
Get Over the Excuses
We’ve all got them—those reasons for not doing what we know we should do. Here are a few that I have heard or tried on myself to avoid a marriage retreat:
Who has the time for a relaxing weekend? We all have time for what is important to us. Our calendar reveals our values. Think about how you spent the last weekend. Which part of it was more important than the long-term success of your marriage and family?
We don’t need a marriage weekend. Our marriage is OK. If OK is the goal for your marriage, you may be right. But why settle for just average when your marriage could be transformed into a legacy-leaving, world-transforming, passionate relationship with eternal impact?
We don’t have the money. Retreats don’t have to be expensive. They can cost no money if you want to get creative and plan them that way. It comes down once again to your priorities. Is your marriage important enough to take the time to transform it? Money follows our priorities and reveals them, as well.
Who will watch the kids? While childcare can seem like a legitimate barrier to a marriage retreat getaway, it doesn’t have to be. After all, who is likely to benefit most from you and your spouse getting intentional about your family plan and purpose? Your children.
So get creative about childcare. If you have an awesome mother-in-law—like I do—then you’re good. Your children’s grandparents can be a great place to look for help. Ask friends. Explain what you are doing and why, and see if others don’t step up to help. If all else fails, ask your pastor or spiritual leaders for ideas.
I don’t know about you, but I’m aiming for a little better than just average with our marriage. Now that we’ve covered why you should plan a marriage retreat, start transforming your marriage right away by sending your spouse a link to this post—before another weekend gets away!
Have you ever taken a marriage retreat? Share about your experience below!