Tomorrow I will be beginning the Love Dare. What is the love dare? "The Love Dare is a 40-day challenge for husbands and wives to understand and practice unconditional love. Whether your marriage is hanging by a thread or healthy and strong, The Love Dare is a journey you need to take. It's time to learn the keys to finding true intimacy and developing a dynamic marriage."
The Love Dare is a book that was featured in a movie called Fireproof. Fireproof is a Christian film about a man whose marriage is failing, and headed for divorce. His father challenges him to take the love dare, and apparently this end up saving the marriage (I haven't seen the film, so I'm assuming it ends well).
I must state that I'm not a Christian. But I have been in the past, and I do find wisdom in the Bible and it's messages about love. From what I've read online, it seems the movie and the book are very much about loving God and using your connection with God to strengthen your connection with your spouse. I'm not really sure how much we'll be able to get out of it without believing in the Christian God. Although I am no longer a Christian, I am open to the messages, and I am very willing to listen to what this book has to say. The reviews I have been reading say that this program works for couples who are not Christian, so I hope that they are right and this will work for us.
The Love Dare is a 40-day program. Each day has a new theme and, you are given a new dare. Each dare has about two pages of explanation and encouragement, and then a paragraph outlining that day's dare. Then there are a couple of pages for you to use as a journal to record what you did, how it went, and your spouse's response.
I'm not going to be reading ahead, so I don't know what all of the challenges are going to be. I generally like skimming through a new book, and I really want to just go ahead and read all of the dares, but I feel it will be beneficial to just take it one day at a time. So each evening, I will be reading the next day's chapter.
I have just read the first challenge.
Day 1: Love is Patient
It states, "Love is built on two pillars that best define what it is. Those pillars are patience and kindness. All other characteristics of love are extensions of these two attributes. And that's where your dare will begin. With patience."
It goes on to explain the importance of choosing to be patient; responding to negative situations positively, being slow to anger, extending mercy to those around you. It says that anger doesn't solve problems, it makes them worse, while patience and calm stops problems in their tracks. "It is a choice to control your emotions rather than allowing your emotions to control you, and shows discretion instead of returning evil for evil."
Then there are several paragraphs about having more patience with your spouse, and how it will improve your relationship.
The challenge for today says to demonstrate patience all day and not say anything negative to your spouse. I will be completing this challenge tomorrow, and tomorrow night I will journal the results of day one, along with listing the challenge for tomorrow.