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Staying Close When Life is Crazy: David & Meg Robbins

Family Life Today / Dave & Ann Wilson, Bob Lepine
The Truth Network Radio
February 14, 2024 5:15 am

Staying Close When Life is Crazy: David & Meg Robbins

Family Life Today / Dave & Ann Wilson, Bob Lepine

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February 14, 2024 5:15 am

Life is hectic--and finding time for intimacy feels impossible. How can we keep our connection strong amidst all the crazy? David and Meg Robbins find out how to manage overwhelming busyness, offering tangible approaches to build stronger intimacy. David and Meg are contributors to FamilyLife's all-new Art of Marriage group study! To learn more or order your copy, visit

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I'm that person who I wait till it's like almost on fumes and I'm pulling through the car line at school and I'm realizing that I'm on empty and remembering that the light came on when I left home and I'm like, please don't run out of gas in the car line, you know, but realizing that in life, you know, I probably tend to be the same like kind of just keep going going going I think we probably both that's our natural tendency is to go and then take time to refill later But just realizing like okay. No, we need an ongoing Refueling, you know and that's what Jesus offers us Welcome to family life today where we want to help you pursue the relationships that matter most I'm Shelby Abbott and your hosts are Dave and Ann Wilson. You can find us at This is family life today.

All right, so it's all exciting day when we have the Robinson studio. Yay, I love having Meg and David with us. You guys, it's good to be here. Welcome to family life today. We always love being here with y'all. We love time around the table with you. I mean, honestly though, I mean, is it a good day for you guys to be here? You just got the kids off to school.

I mean seriously, you're in a you're in a whirlwind of activity with your family, you know, when you walk in here, you've refreshed. Are you like, ah, you know We are having to be really intentional because we are in a crazy full season Yeah, we got a senior all the way down to a second grader and six out of the last seven nights They all get to play one sport, but six out of the last seven nights They had one of them or a banquet for one of them. And so we are actually celebrating right now the closing of four seasons Really new ones are opening, but the closing of four seasons of sports, which is great I mean seriously, what are we talking about? I know football. Yeah football for one. That's all that matters anything else cross-country cross-country Volleyball volleyball and baseball and baseball for the little man.

Well in flag football Yeah, we just throw in another one We let our senior he did too that this how long is the break before they start another? It's already going Well, then I'm glad we're gonna talk about what we're gonna talk about today Well, I mean, I'm just thinking there's a lot of listeners going you're living their life. Yeah, you know, we're on a different stage Now we live that life and we know it's crazy But there are a lot of listeners going I can relate to these guys Because they are living our life and a lot of people will ask like how do you keep your marriage vibrant? And you're walk with God Really vibrant as well when you're so busy and your life is just running out of control It feels like sometimes and so we're gonna answer that question because you guys know the answer We're gonna respond and dig in and talk about how current we are in the process and how much God is faithful to keep showing Up and teaching us and guiding us.

So We had it all figured out, right? But recently it took a little bit of time to say we're gonna Slow down a bit intentionally focus on our marriage and family and your walk with God. Yeah, and so we thought okay Let's learn from what you experienced I mean there was several months where we were like this can't continue we have to take some serious time and Shut down all social media accounts do extra To pour into our time together that we would have and just going we're gonna do some pretty crazy radical things to clear out space so that we have time together because there's a trajectory happening and we it may feel like We're you know bumping up against the curb, but we're keeping it on the road But there's a time where you get off you get off the road, you know Then you're like, how did we end up here? And that's we did not Want that to be the case and it was amazing how in this intentional time? It took a while for that just adrenaline propelling you to the next thing to sit in it And you know, I did silly things like well, it wasn't a silly thing But it was an intentional thing of being at my kids games and putting my phone on focus where literally no text or email Would come in.

I don't even know what focus is. Well, it's a new tool Yeah, and so for a period of time and the list could go on and on but it felt for the first two or three Weeks, like I kind of feel like I'm cutting fingers off and now my arms getting cut off But I was actually just feeling how my adrenaline was propelling me to the next thing so often and as that Settled in I just came to realize I can mitigate and manage overwhelm really well Hmm and as a result I can push Meg in our relationship our marriage gets pushed further than it's intended to go and I can end up imposing that on to my family But then the worst case is my soul. I don't take diligent care of my soul I end up, you know getting depleted and then just carrying on because I can for a little while it always catches up with us Yeah, but I end up imposing that on to Meg and our family and the worst case is I end up Not knowing how to bring myself to Meg and to share conversation emotional intimacy Because I'm not in tune with myself. I'm not paying attention to their own pain that I'm just blowing past in my life I mean, I think we long to be known, you know, and we need that we need deep intimate connection emotionally in our marriages but I think we both realized just how quickly the busyness and the full schedule and You know all the things and even just loving our kids Well, you know just those things take up a lot of time and space and if I don't know what's going on inside of me It's really hard to let David into that space too, you know and in the Lord it's hard for me to really connect with the Lord if I'm not carving out time to You know go there with him and and really see what is the Lord trying to do in my heart and in my life? And what are the places that we need to connect?

Horizontally and vertically as you always say. I mean, yeah, I would just say this as you guys started that process What I mean David you already said it was like us. It was hard to click into well It's almost like putting your life on the focus. Whatever that thing is app, you know Yeah, I mean Meg did you find the same thing cuz I mean you're you got a lot of the kids stuff going on Not that David doesn't but was it you're working Speaking you guys have a lot on your plate. Yeah, it's it's definitely busy.

I mean life And we all feel that I Don't think we're alone in that We look around at our friends and we're all texting each other and talking about. Oh, I miss this Thanks for reminding me about that. And does anybody know what the homework is for this kid, you know because we're all frazzled and I think it's something that we realized we need a season of Fighting and saying some nose cutting out some things you fighting for your marriage just fighting for your family and for our relationship walk with the Lord and each other and Just being able to be more present, you know, and and some of those rhythms We've been able to keep in place, you know, but but we did need like a concentrated season of okay What are the things we can dial back and say no to and just for our own health, you know? Yeah, and Jesus didn't buck against the constraints of normal everyday life hmm, he was fully God while fully human and You know, he did miracles, but when it comes to the pace he lived and the amount he withdrew You're just reading the Gospels and I'm going I'm not withdrawing with the Lord I'm not withdrawing with friends and getting life there Like Jesus did I am I'm letting some other things control the pace and so yeah That's kind of the spirit and heart of I mean you look back to when you started that Like if you were looking at your soul your marriage Personal life on like a dashboard of your car with a full and empty gauge Where were you because I want to know where you were and then the journey and if that gauge has gone More toward full. Yeah, I think was interesting about Looking back at the gauges in the moment. I would have said oh Yeah, we we press down to empty but then we take we take time to refuel. Yeah, which is true It's like we weren't off the road This was really about are we living the John 10 10, you know the fullness that Jesus really does offer or are we allowing things to crowd it and so How often do we get above half full would have been a fair question.

I was an amp not much at all Really? But yeah, we'll we'll come down and spiritually maybe there'd be seasons where we'd be at full physically I feel like I'm always tired, you know Emotionally would be the thing though. That was kind of that that tank and that gauge for us personally It's like we're gonna prioritize spiritual We're gonna we're staying active because we're we got young kids But it's that emotional gauge that I was like do we even know what's going on inside of ourselves?

Are we willing to allow ourselves to go by the still waters? To pay attention to what's inside in that tank in order to be able to let each other into that space Yeah, and I would say the tanks got really full through this season and now there's Rhythms that we're seeking to be true and I often said people are saying like well, how's it going? And I'll be like, well, I feel like we're living in them out at 50% and for the achiever performer That's really a grace-filled good thing and it's it's going pretty well The main way it's going well is not because we're not tired from six out of seven nights with sports the last time is that we are having space ourselves to know what's going on inside of our hearts to share with one another and Gauges our marriage gauge.

Yeah It's funny. I kind of it's funny you asked that about filling up tanks because in our car like in my car I'm that person who I wait till it's like almost on fumes and I'm pulling through the car line at school and I'm Realizing that I'm on empty and remembering that the light came on when I left home I'm like, please don't run out of gas in the car line, you know, like my greatest fear in life But you know I know there's people who fill up when they get to like a half or a fourth of tank and I've always thought that was Crazy as far as the car goes but realizing that in life, you know I probably tend to be the same like kind of just keep going going going I think we probably both that's our natural tendency is to go and then take time to refill later But just realizing like okay. No, we need an ongoing Refueling, you know and that's what Jesus offers us He offers for us to run on full all the time, but we have to make choices to engage with him and gain What he's wanting to fill us up with I really think Dave like that question is a great one that you post of If you're gauging your spiritual life and even our marriage with a fuller empty tank, where are you? That's an intimate question and a lot of times as you're saying we don't even take the time to figure out where we are Because we're so busy running. We're not even checking To see where the tank is like you we get in the line like oh no, I'm empty And I'm in the carpool line not the gas station.

Yeah, exactly. We find ourselves in these places affair We spoke to pastors and their wives and did a lot of Q&A because it was like how do you have a vibrant marriage? When you're running so hard, this could be pastors and wives could be businessmen It didn't matter but we were specifically yeah, but one guy and his wife are really heavily involved in leading celebrate recovery in that area This is in Missouri and she held up She's a therapist and they had so many great things say but he held up a chart they use with celebrate recovery I'd never seen the red lights green lights Okay, so basically it was like a stoplight, but it was it was more of a horizontal spectrum But they you know encourage people to say where am I right now?

Am I in danger? That'd be red very, you know Bright red am I good green yellow caution, but it was helpful to say, you know when you walk in the house sometimes I saw a Facebook post the other day. I'm not saying everything on Facebook's great, but it was interesting It was like the wife and husband were saying there are days when he walks in the door or she walks in the door And I look at him I've got and I go I got 30 Mm-hmm, and and that means you got to bring 70 because I just don't have 80 right now. I'm just being honest I got 30 and he says okay. I got the other 70 or vice-versa and you know, the question is like, okay What if you say I got 30 and she says I got 20 Well in this guy too that was talking about the celebrate recovery guy He said I walked in the house the other day and said I'm at a red I just want you to know I'm a red. I've been triggered all day. I need to call a therapist And so, you know, he's had some addictions before but when he walked in the door The wife was saying that helped me to know like this isn't about me He's not taking things out of me knows where he is.

And now what what's my response to him being in the red? I thought that was really wise. So maybe you walk in and just say I'm empty. I'm on an eighth of a tank You can't do that every day for a month That would be that gauge but I love one thing that you've started over the last since these months And it's sending me a voice memo in the moment because you know Tell it for yourself. I mean sometimes like if I know okay, you know Either something just happened or I'm processing something and it's I'm feeling it like pretty deep and no This is probably something that would be good for us to talk about for me to like let him in here emotionally But I know that if I put it off and don't let him know until later then things are gonna be chaotic at home as usual or whatever and we may not ever talk about it until Five days later and I'm like, oh, yeah, we never talked about this So I'll send him a voice text and say hey, I'm just letting you know, like, you know, here's the 10-second summary But let's talk about this more later And I just felt like I needed to go ahead and let you in some so you can ask more about it later What's been so helpful about that because we all delay and like oh we'll get to that Yeah, and then you don't end up making the space it ends up Tuning me in to like I want to make space For us to connect over something that really meant enough to her to message in the middle of moment to go This is affecting me. I do want to prop I mean she's going I want to process this and it'll it doesn't make me fish or yes, and you're like, okay Yeah, let's let's make space for that. That's a good one guys Like that's one of those things you've taken away Like a good tool that you've brought out of this whole time and space so turning off your phones Kind of giving yourself space Meg.

I like that sending a voicemail That's a I mean, I'm thinking listeners right now listeners can go I do that. Yeah, that's really practical I practically hey, by the way, David Meg just gave us one you got one you know my number one thing that's allowing me to have space to let her in is Me taking a few mornings a week and my goal is to I'm definitely doing one where I'm calling them a circle back Mornings where I am circling back giving a little space extra space for me to journal and go What am I experiencing right now all of life's coming at me pressures there pressures there? What is going I want to circle back on the week or on these past few days and process?

How is it affecting me? because sadly I'll just blow past it and keep getting things accomplished and not really pay attention and what's going on in my soul and Let her in on it and so if I have that extra little space and it's designated for circling back not to read a book not to Listen to the next podcast even though I love listening to family life today but to circle back on what how am I processing and and handling what's going on in life right now from a kid applying to college to You know a kid having their feelings hurt something going on between us something going on at work all the things that start coming at us I'm able to put words to how it's affected me and then all of a sudden I can bring her in on those words For me and the way I'm wired all I know is Something different happens when I've pinned it and I'm able to bring her in more specifically because otherwise I'll just kind of keep Managing or kind of verbally vomited or you know, and I'm processing and it doesn't you know We got to spend more time to make it make sense man. Totally different when I'm Processing it with pen give us an example David of something that may be happen I mean this week there have been things with one of our kids and It involves the whole family and so instead of me just Okay, another story another thing and I just need to get over it. I'm like, here's what I am feeling That's being threatened with this family and it concerns me. It worries me I want to process with Meg not just fixing the issue for one of my kids and what they're dealing with But no, there's a bigger story of how this could end up affecting our relationship with that family. So that was a this week one So it's kind of level five that we talked about at a weekend to remember conference Like you're going not this is what's going on But this is what I'm feeling sure in your heart going on.

Yeah. Yeah, that's good And Meg, you know what happens when he does that because I know what happens when I do that with Ann Yeah, well, I mean, I think we all long to be known and loved I feel like the more that I know his heart and his soul like that It just makes me love him more, you know, and I don't know and I and it also makes me Respond and want to share it's easier to share in response sometimes, you know, like oh wow That's really really letting me and that's so intimate, you know And a lot of times they're physical intimate moments that may follow those kinds of things, you know Like not in this exact moment, but it's like when I feel like we're connecting deeply Emotionally, it just makes room for other kinds of connection but I will say this those of you who may be wired like me where you can attune in the moment really well and Pay attention to what you know Your spouse is sharing or you know Someone close to you a kid even is sharing and really in the moment go there I can sometimes use that skill but not really care And so there's just a caution there and and we had a story this was a few years ago but it still rings loud and true in my mind where Yeah, we were feeling a wedge in our relationship. That emotional tank was empty We weren't sharing with one another and I just remember going you're not you're not bringing to me anymore That's it. Like I'm asking how you're doing I'm trying to come up with creative questions and I just feel like it's a brick wall Like what is going on and you share I said, you know I will I feel like that for a season I was I was sharing and I was letting you in and it's kind of like I'm giving you this rose and You know in the moment you like take this rose and you're really careful with it and you ask a lot of questions about it And are really, you know, take care of it but then like as that moment or night passes, you know, you just kind of toss that rose off to the side of the bed and And then the next time, you know, I bring you another rose and the same thing happens but eventually there's just like this big pile of dead roses over there on the side of the bed because you're not coming back and Asking and and wanting to know like hey, how's that rose or caring for these emotional pieces of my heart? I'm giving you and You know it was kind of like the contrast would be Can you take that rose and like put it in some water and like let's keep this conversation open You know and you're checking in on the rose of any petals I Would just say in them in the mode I was in this was one of those areas that made us get aggressive with let's have a season of time to be really intentional to slow down and make space for those Conversations because the thing is I do care just like all of us care about our marriages, you know and our families I intend to follow back up but yet the pace of life was just propelling forward and as a result I was intending to circle back but I really wouldn't the next worries of the day would come and It got out of order of where I wanted to invest my time And so it was like I let's get some radical choices to slow down the noise around us and it doesn't have to be that radical to be honest in order to feel the pace difference in your life and Be able to know what's going on and share that with your spouse Let me ask you Meg as you talk about the rose talk to the woman who's maybe Tried to give her heart her rose to her husband over and over and he doesn't even take it At the beginning and care for it He just kind of dumps it off and so she stops giving her heart and she starts building up Resentment as that ever happened and what would you say to those people that are struggling with that? Like why would I give him my heart when he doesn't even appreciate it or wanted it seems Yeah, I mean I would say when we first the first time we realized that a few years ago I mean I was in that place even of just like I had started building up walls because I was kind of like Well, I'm not gonna keep Giving you these things if I don't feel like you're caring in return and I knew that you did care So maybe that's a little bit different. We've had many seasons where I knew you would enter back in But for one it took really voicing that and saying hey, here's how I'm really Experiencing this right now and and us having conversations But I think even I mean that was probably a season where we even chose to go to some counseling and like hey Let's get some help because we we know we care we know we want to do this better But life is kind of chewing us up and spitting us out.

And so how do we you know? What choices do we need to make? But yeah, I would say to especially if it's someone who has had long seasons of that, you know years upon years Or even months after months and months going on, you know I would say invite other people into that, you know, certainly start with having an honest conversation But I think if it's been going on for a long time, it could be that the spouse Doesn't honestly get that, you know, or even how to do it, right? Exactly. And so I would say it's okay to To need other people to help you other women in that process other women maybe counselors, you know, they're they're definitely Times when we just need outside people to speak into and help us well, and I think what I usually remind women too is There is a God that loves you so much and Jesus is constantly caring for your heart protecting it and we need other people we've longed for that with our spouse, but Keep giving your heart to Jesus because he's the one ultimately who makes it soft and tender And we need to bring him along in the process.

Yeah. Well, and I think something that we have Realized or I have personally over and over through the years is that if I'm going to David first with all of these things You know, he even on his very best day He is not gonna be enough for me and that's not the role that he has you know Jesus is the one who wants to meet me in these longings that I have or these hurt that I might be walking through whatever it is and you know bringing that to him first and Experiencing the rest and the restoration the love all those things that I really can only get from him It's good. So I think that's a really good reminder and then going to him as our true source first It's just there can be you know, more emotional intimacy in our marriage.

Yes, we share this. Yeah And again, I would add at the same time to us men Because I think when Ann was sharing that I was over here like she's talking about me You know in some ways cuz I've done that the Rose illustration, right? Mmm, you've felt that yeah, you know in the moment I'm caring but then I don't follow up I think a lot of wives are hearing your story Megan going.

Oh my goodness. That's where we are right now So on the side of being the guy that missed it for many decades. I wish I could say many years It's meant been many decades It was easy for me to have my eyes so focused on the job and the mission and accomplishing things And forget this is more important than anything My wife and kids are more important than all this other stuff and I've got to turn it off You know and say okay. She just handed me a rose.

I Dismissed it. I've got to engage and be there and sometimes like you just we talked about this whole time You guys slow down to be able to do that a little bit You know, you got to take the pace down John Mark Comer, you know the ruthless elimination of hurry We're just hurrying to everything. Yeah, and in some ways we got to go this matters I've got to figure out a way to be engaged with her and could be the other way with him When they're sharing something like a rose that's precious that needs to be watered That's love your wife as Christ loved the church as cherishing and nourishing. I Think for sometimes sometimes I'm saying to the guys step up, you know make that decision It's the most important one you're gonna make it's it's more important than that bonus check coming Mmm, and I know that's important too, but this is more important right guys Thanks for taking the time to share what God's been teaching you because I think it's helping a lot of us It's inspired Dave and I I like it You I'm Shelby Abbott You've been listening to David and Wilson with David and Meg Robbins on family life today really love this conversation and I loved how we talked about marriage and intimacy and kind of just the busyness of life and really do you relate with how difficult it can be to navigate busyness and Maintain intimacy inside the chaos of life with a family Well one way to have a vibrant marriage and spiritual life Amidst a hectic schedule is really just by slowing down and having meaningful Conversations with both your spouse and other people in your community and the new art of marriage is a study that will help you Grow deeper together closer to God and more connected to your community It gives space for authentic and vulnerable conversations around challenging marriage topics So throughout six 25-minute sessions the art of marriage unpacks six biblical words that describe God's love for us and how each of those words can be displayed through our Messy imperfect marriages. Yes, even your messy imperfect marriage So you can go to the show notes or art of marriage calm to learn more and grab your leader kit today We're really excited to share the all-new art of marriage with you and hear how God is working in your marriages and impacting your lives Now tomorrow, what does it look like to connect vulnerability? emotional expression and shared Experiences to the overall health of your marriage But David and Meg Robbins are back again tomorrow with David and Wilson to talk about just that we hope you'll join us On behalf of David and Wilson. I'm Shelby Abbott. We'll see you back next time for another edition of family life today Family life today is a donor supported production of family life a crew ministry helping you pursue the relationships that matter most
Whisper: medium.en / 2024-02-14 07:36:30 / 2024-02-14 07:48:05 / 12

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