Recently, I kept hearing an advertisement on the radio station I listen to. They were raving about a marriage conference that is fun, Christian, and practical. They talked about the rave reviews the event gets.
How the Enemy Didn’t Want My Marriage to Improve
Every time I heard it, I knew it would be something that would benefit us, but due to pride, I did not tell Chris about the event.
I would say things to myself such as, “Why do I always have to be the one to bring everything up? Why am I always the first one to take a step in trying to better our relationship? I’m tired of always being the one to go to him! It’s not going to be me this time.” This went on for a little over a month.
We would even hear the message when we were all in my car. I would hope he would say something like, “That sounds like just what we need! Would you like to attend?” But ugh- no such luck.
I Put My Pride Aside
Finally, I started to hear the DJs say that the conference was nearing and you needed to sign up soon. I knew it was going to be up to me to bring it up, or we wouldn’t be attending. When I looked in the rearview mirror at our 2 beautiful boys and their innocent faces, I thought about how they deserve to have parents with a strong marriage!
It gave me the boost I needed to put my pride away. Well, semi. I decided to send Chris a link to the conference. I typed I think we should consider this in the subject and the link was the only thing in the body. Thankfully he sent back, “Let’s do it!”
Even though the conference was 30 minutes away, we agreed to stay at the hotel so I wouldn’t be tempted to work on my blog or any of the other reasons I don’t sit still. It was the right decision.
As the parents of a 2 and 4-year old, it is a rare occasion that we have a full conversation without being interrupted. Over the last 4.5 years, quite a bit had built up in our relationship that needed attending to. We had tried many times to talk and to mend things on our own, but we didn’t have the tools of communication and the rules we needed to get to a better place.
In the days leading up to the conference, I began to feel anxiety. I couldn’t imagine spending 2.5 days alone with someone I hardly knew and was bitter towards. What would we talk about? I even looked at the website to see if I could cancel and get my money back. Again, I would look at my kids and gain strength. I knew I couldn’t look them in the eyes guilt-free knowing I had passed up the opportunity to show them a better way to live as a married couple. We had nothing to lose.
I truly believe the devil did not want to see us attend this event. Our relationship had become exactly what he liked to see in a marriage. I pray continuously God continues to ban him from our marriage.
How Does Your Marriage Affect Your Children?
According to a research report, Why Marriage Matters 3rd Edition, Children whose parents are married:
- Live longer, healthier lives both physically and psychologically.
- Do better in school.
- They are more likely to graduate from high school and attend college.
- Are less likely to live in poverty.
- Are less likely to be in trouble with the law.
- They are less likely to drink or do drugs.
- Are less likely to be violent or sexually active.
- Are less likely to be victims of sexual or physical violence.
- They are more likely to have a successful marriage when they are older.
If you want to check out all of the other supportive research, do that here.
What We Loved About the Conference
1. The Humor- It was soooo funny yet we learned a ton. The price is way worth it. $300- $350 per couple (not including the hotel & food.)
2. The Schedule Within 30 minutes of it beginning, we knew we had made the right choice to come.
3. Every night we had a project that was assigned. At first, you would work alone, and then directions are given on how to come together and discuss what you did independently. This is the part that moves you forward in your marriage because you apply what you learned during the day.
4. Date Night. It had been too long.
5. It gave us hope. We learned that we do need to take care of the small stuff as well as the big stuff, and we learned about forgiveness.
Our 5 Favorite Take-Aways
1. My spouse is not my enemy.
2. We got our priorities straight and in the right order. God, the marriage, the kids!
3. We remembered why we got together in the first place.
4. We learned that we didn’t need to be so hard on ourselves. Achieving oneness in a marriage takes the rest of your lives.
5. We got so many tips that we came home and started applying instantly.
I’ve Got $100 For You to Apply Towards Your Marriage – Redeem It Now! Use Group Name: thisnthatparenting
When I experience something that brings me great joy, I immediately want to give all my loved ones the same item or the same experience so they can raise their dopamine levels too. I wanted to send every married couple I know to the conference, but that’s not in our budget.
Since I couldn’t pull that off, I started researching how I could help to ensure that others got to the conference and had the phenomenal experience that Chris and I had. I found out that if I became a group coordinator, I could help other couples get $100 off of their registration fee. I signed up immediately!
That’s right! When you register, type in thisnthatparenting into the Group Name box and you will automatically receive $100 off of your registration fee. Share this with everyone you know.
For every 5 couples that use the Group Name: thisnthatparenting I will receive a gift card for a couple to attend the event. I plan to use these cards as giveaways for couples with children still in the home, so more marriages can be impacted! Let’s pay it forward.
Register now for an event near you or make a vacation out of it. We talked to couples who drove 4-7 days to get to our conference!
Why We Think You Should Attend Weekend to Remember
- Who wouldn’t want to get away, get some alone time, and improve their marriage all in one weekend? It doesn’t matter if your marriage is a 10 or on the brink of divorce, there are other couples at the conference in the same range, and they are all benefitting. 96% say so.
- For over 40 years, FamilyLife has helped more than 1.5 million couples build a solid foundation for the rest of their lives.
- Children with married parents are better off. Children with happily married parents are even better off!
- On average, attendees say their relationships improved on average from a 4/10 to an 8/10 after one weekend.
- Get God’s blueprint for marriage, so you have something to use in the struggles. And there will be struggles. That’s normal. The problems arise when we don’t know what to do with our struggles.
Still Not Convinced You Should Attend?
Other Things You Might Need to Know
- Military couples get a bigger discount. Visit familylife.com/military
- There are special sessions for pastors. Visit familylife.com/pastorWTR
- After attending a Weekend to Remember, if you don’t agree that it was one of the finest investments you could make in your marriage, the full registration fee will be refunded upon written request no later than seven days after the getaway you attended.
- You don’t have to be married to attend.
- Children are not allowed to go.
- There are special sessions and products at the event for blended families and stepfamilies.
What Chris and I Suggest When You Go
- Stay in the hotel no matter how close to your home you are.
- Plan to make the date night special.
- Go with an open mind.
- Before you go, share the goals that you have for the event with each other.
- Pray before you go and have others praying your marriage will get the most out of the event that is possible.
- If there are others at the conference that you know, don’t hang out. Make it about your marriage!
- Be honest in a respectful manner.
- Bring money for resources that they sell and for souvenirs.
- Pack highlighters and post-its to mark up your workbook and create dividers.
- Bring a sachel that you can take to the meetings with your pens, highlighters, post-its, workbooks, a sweater for the wife, snacks and anything else you like to use throughout the day.
We’re Not The Only Ones Who Strengthened A Marriage
“Extremely eye-opening, I feel like I have been given the answers to a test I had been failing for years” ~Married 4 years
“This weekend was a pause button for us. We have 3 bio children and 1 foster child under the age of 7! Life is going fast and we need to be reminded of our priorities – God first, then our marriage, then our children.” ~Married 10 years
“Life-changing, family changing, community changing – world changing. So much accomplished and uncovered and resolved in just a few days. Renewal has taken place! ” ~Married 11 years
“ I never knew ‘great marriages are intentional, not born.’ I thought because we were in a rough spot that we were not for each other, which is a lie. And I’m glad it is. ” ~Married 11 years
“After 19 years we realized we haven’t really taken time to get to know each other. This conference reinvented us and sparked a new life in our marriage.” ~Married 19 years
“I came here to fix my wife, found out it was me that needed fixing.” ~Married 27 years
“We are a newly married couple and we were able to hear what a healthy marriage should be and look like. We are excited about starting out the right way!!” ~Married 1 year
“My wife is God’s gift. This had never been on my radar.” ~Married 21 years
“We reconnected and recommitted our marriage and ministry after an affair. God is healing our marriage of 30 years and we will make it. WE STILL DO!” ~Married 30 years
Call to Action
George Eliot wrote, “It is never too late to be what you might have been.” Sign up now and take your marriage to the next level. If not for yourself, then do it for your children! Don’t forget to enter thisnthatparenting in the Group Name to receive $100 Off.
Help Other Marriages
If you still don’t see any reason why you and your spouse need to attend or maybe you’re not married or your widowed, there are things that you can do to improve the marriages of others. Or maybe you want to attend and help others attend:
1. If you’re a grandparent, it would be the perfect time to take care of your grandkids for a weekend. This will do nothing but benefit your family’s legacy. Give your kids gift cards to the conference. Tell them, “I’ve got the kids. Go have a wonderful weekend.” If you can’t afford that, tell them about the conference, give them the link to this blog post, and keep the kids.
2. You can pass this blog post on to the married couples that are in your lives. They will forever be grateful. Share the post on all of your social media pages NOW!
3. Give a gift card as wedding gifts. There were people at the conference who spoke about receiving a gift card for their wedding. The beginning years were still rough at times, but what a difference it made. I would have loved to attend this in year 1 instead of year 6!
4. Provide restoration and hope for another couple. For $22, you can contribute to one of 3,400 couples who will receive a scholarship to the event this fall.
5. Pray for the marriage of those who attend the conference. Marriage is hard, and 50% of them don’t last. I truly believe this conference can turn that around for couples.
I would love to hear how Weekend to Remember impacts your marriage or how you used it to impact another marriage.
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Make it a great day or not, the choice is yours! Remember to have fun, laugh and give God the glory! I love you! SS