Today I want to dispel the first of a few myths that I believe hurt businesses and marriages.
Lie #1: You can’t have it all- A Thriving Marriage & A Thriving Business
Truth: A thriving marriage can help create a thriving business! No, a thriving business doesn’t create a thriving marriage.
The obvious tip here is to be focused on creating a strong foundation for your marriage from the beginning. Create a Vision and Mission for you and your spouse to have as your driving force. The thing you look back to that keeps you moving forward together.
For years, I have had a heart for young women who are married and starting a business with there husbands. My desire is to see their marriages thriving, not surviving. To see them as a couple find their “place” in this world where they are feeling confidant they are giving their highest contribution to the world.
Why would anyone settle for a “surviving” marriage? Statistically, if over 50% of marriages end in divorce … how many of those 50% left are really in love? Choosing to Love? Enjoying being married? 50 years down the road how many of those 50 % that are still married… have thriving marriages… not just surviving… not just “stayed together because we know divorce is wrong” or “for the kids” or dare I say it…” divorce is unbiblical.” While those are good reasons to not get a divorce shouldn’t we have a higher standard? I have a higher standard for my marriage. I want a thriving marriage in 50 years. One that is still on purpose and building something significant together. Yes, one of our purposes is to raise our children in a strong Christ centered home, but after the kids are grown, what next? I know… I can’t wait! I know there are so many things Isaac and I feel “called” to do… ways to serve in this world…giving our greatest contribution possible with what we have been given. My prayer is that you have that standard as well!
Dream! Take Action! Having a marriage on Purpose doesn’t just happen, it takes making a choice and staying committed to working at it. So build a strong foundation with a conviction for your future together. Build Your Marriage on a Solid Foundation.
When you build your Marriage strong with Vision and a Future in Mind then you can Begin Building a strong business together… even if you aren’t “working together” all day. I only officially worked with Isaac and the Portland Office for a few months after we got married. I was still in University and then we had also found out we were going to be parents, so it became harder for me to work. But even though we weren’t together all day, every day like we were those first 9 months the office was open, I was still helping him build our business, our future, our livelihood. It just looked different.
A huge key for being able to build a business together without being together at the office all day is to try to find ways to integrate your business life into your personal life. This takes intentionality on your part. You have to figure it out and plan to do it. Our world, society, tells us separation of work from family life is called living a “balanced” life. I personally don’t believe in that form of balance. I actually believe it is a lie satan has used to get believers to close off their lives from the world that we are called to be lights too. You can be purposeful and share the gospel with someone at work, if your work allows it. But didn’t Jesus go and meet people’s needs while he preached. What needs do your co workers have? Do you even know them? Does your wife know them? How can your marriage & family be ambassadors for Christ? How can you use your home, possessions, and time as embassies for the Kingdom of God? You see, by separating work life from personal, the main place God has placed you becomes under utilized.
For us, hospitality quickly became a huge part of my ministry to my husband’s work, which hugely helped build and develop leaders. It enabled Isaac to really spend the time he needed with these young guys to help them learn and grow in the business so they could build a business of their own. In having these young guys in our home for dinners, bbqs, and just over anytime (I mean late nights I was up making enchiladas some times at like 10 pm). I was helping Isaac build our business. Having people into our home gave me the opportunity to keep learning about the growth & knowledge of the business and stay connected… keep up with the jive talk of the business. It also helped me feel like Isaac and I were a team, and like I was helping him, which is part of what built our marriage stronger. Aside from all of that I also felt a high calling to be purposefully loving these young people Isaac worked with and to model a strong marriage for them since so many came from broken homes and didn’t believe in marriage. It has been such a HUGE blessing and privilege to watch some of these young people grow into such fine, mature, strong men and women. Serving them through counseling, providing a good home cooked meal (which was sometimes so huge for these college guys), letting them stay over when they came from out of town, and so many other ways became another huge part of what built up our marriage.
I realize not every business allows for the same kind of ministry opportunities Isaac and I have been so blessed to have experienced within our business… however, I would encourage you too look for and ask your spouse how can we integrate the business into our personal life more? I really don’t believe God ever intended for our personal life to be separate from our work life. It’s all our Life and it doesn’t even technically belong to us when we are living for Christ. Why not share the beauty of what God is doing in your marriage and family with those who don’t know Him or might need the love of a family. That’s really what we are called to do. Love our neighbors… our neighbors are our co-workers, employees, employers, etc.