A Must-Have For Every Marriage – Adventure

This month, we celebrated being married for 19 years. 19 years! Next year is 20, and that blows my mind. Happy anniversary, sweetheart!!!

I am forever grateful to God for bringing such a precious, loving, and exciting man into my life. He makes me laugh and dance, and sing, and try new things. Without the gift of Jim Bob in my life, I’m afraid I’d be a bit of a somber little chickie. He’s pure joy to me, and I can never adequately put into words how much I love this man. I mean, seriously y’all, isn’t he cute ?!!

My hubby

My hubby

But it wasn’t always this way (well, alright, he was always cute!)

See? He's always been cute!

See? He’s always been cute!

We went through hard times to get to this point. And it isn’t that we don’t struggle at all now. Every marriage, even the best ones, have little things that aren’t perfect. This side of heaven, I’m afraid it’s just so.

The piece of advice I love to give to younger married couples or to anyone who is struggling in a marriage is simply this: Love the Lord, love Him together, and always seek to love your spouse above yourself. If you are both doing this, there will be no “50/50” model of marriage. Instead, it will be a “100%/100%” marriage; each giving all for the other, and both giving all to the Lord, and looking to the Lord, rather than their spouse, as the source of fulfillment. No human being can fill the God-sized void deep inside.

It has to be God.

The Ultimate Marriage Adventure

Over the years, we’ve also learned that a sense of adventure is a non-negotiable in a marriage. It’s funny that we start our lives together with such plans and dreams, whether spoken or unspoken. Many times, once life gets busy, it is easy to forego those dreams and plans due to other priorities: building/buying a home, having children, moves, jobs, activities – you name it, they can all crowd out the dreams.

But dreaming together is vital.

It gives you a goal, a focus, a reason to keep on going when things are hard. And hard times can and do come.

Our dreams of traveling started many years ago. We were just engaged the first time I heard Jim Bob mention that he’d love to travel, take photos, and write about the places we visit. But, as the years went by, we just got so busy with, well, life. Now we are taking a step back, and realizing, “Hey! We still have those dreams! How are we gonna make them happen?”

As with other things we’ve done successfully in the past, we made a dreams list and then a goals-to-reach-along-the-way list so that we can see our progress and be encouraged that we are on the way to making these dreams a reality. Every time we’ve done this, we have either met or beat our deadlines.

What a great feeling! We’re doing it again now.

We have started with Pinterest travel boards full of pictures of all the places we dream of visiting. Next, we are refining the list to places we both have as high priority. This is such fun!

On our list currently:

  • Cuenca, Ecuador
  • Costa Rica, Panama, and Belize
  • Hawaii (can I just live in Hale’iwa???)
  • France (all of it! And the more baguettes, the better!)
  • England/Scotland/Ireland/Wales (gotta explore the ancestral history)
  • Italy, Austria, and Croatia
  • The Caribbean islands
  • Spain
  • Parts of Africa (Jim Bob would love to visit Nairobi and Cape Town again, among others)
  • India (we have a BIG love of all things Bollywood/India/and the Indian people).

And other places are sure to come up on the list as we talk about it further. What we’d really like to do is travel and blog about all the places we see and explore.

Move over Rick Steves, here we come!

Many things need to happen for this to be a reality, and we’re making a goals list: pay off some debts and save, research destinations, get updated passports for everyone, to name a few…

Your Turn

How about you? Do you and your spouse have dreams? What would you like to do together? Are you planning/making goals to get you there? Please share – let’s spur each other on towards our dreams!

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9 thoughts on “A Must-Have For Every Marriage – Adventure

  1. Michelle

    I so agree with what you’ve shared! Marriage requires a high degree of tolerance but with Jesus Christ we can progress and become more one every single day and more 100%100% and it is absolutely so worth the effort! =)

  2. Pingback: Our Favorite Coffee Shop in the DC Area | Amy Joe Jim Bob

  3. Cara

    Do not miss: Scotland (especially Edinburgh and the highlands), Slovakia (dear friends there!), England (outside of London as well as in), the Netherlands (preferably Delft, as much cuter than Amsterdam). Voice of experience 😉

    1. Amy Joe Post author

      Thank you so much, Cara! Yes, Scotland is high on our list, especially the areas you mentioned as I am descended from Mary, Queen of Scots and just have to see Edinburgh -we’ll see if we can pick up the accent while there. 😉

      Also, GREAT intell on Delft. Jim Bob has been to Amsterdam briefly, but we never thought about Delft. Sounds wonderful!

      I hope all is going well for you there in England. 2016 is our planned year to come see Europe (Lord willing). How long will you be there?

      1. Cara

        Just til July, 2014. The British MA program is only a one-year degree. But…who knows where I could be in 2016?!

        Yes; I liked Delft, particularly. It’s a lot of the quaintness of the Netherlands, and the real “Holland” feeling (windmills, canals), but sweeter and more manageable than Amsterdam, which is where most people go. Lots of beautiful churches and Protestant history in Delft – makes a great shorter (weekend-ish) trip. And, of course, you can buy Delft china, which is fully as awesome as you might expect. It also has a small-town feeling that minimizes the…er, shall we say, not-so-youth-friendly aspects of Dutch liberalism.

        And of England, definitely go to London, but definitely take at least as much time elsewhere. The peculiar, quirky, Englishyness of England is somewhat dimmed in London.

        1. Amy Joe Post author

          Hey Cara,

          Did you ever meet my friend, Jennie Chancey on FB? You guys would have a TON to talk about re: period clothing, etc. She’s a fabulous Christian woman and she has her own period dress pattern company among other things :).

          Thanks for the further intell re: Europe, especially Delft. Sounds fascinating. Maybe we’ll have to figure out a way to meet up with you there in 2016?!?! We’ll see what God does!

          Hugs to you all the way across the “pond.”

  4. Linda

    I always said when ever I got married, I wanted to find a man like my grandfather. Hard working, loved his family, GOD, and life, and treated his wife like a queen every day and cherished every moment they had together. The man was perfect in my eyes. Amy, I think you found that special kind of man in JB. I am so thrilled to see another couple out there experiencing life, love, and marriage the way it should be. I am sure it has been a lot of work, but the foundation you have laid, has made it easier to build into a wonderful marriage. A wonderful life together. I wish you two a lifetime of love and happiness together. You two always seem to make me smile.

    1. Amyjoe

      Thanks, Linda! You are so right; I have been very blessed to share life with Jim Bob. He’s my best friend and such a gift from God, but he never acts as if he is ;).

      So thrilled to see you on here :). You made my day!

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