How to Build an Adventurous Marriage

0 comments Posted on February 1, 2016

by Gary Chapman & Harold Myra

Adventure doesn’t mean you have to do something as drastic as living on a boat, or traveling to Brazil, though both of these sound exciting. Adventure may be trying a different restaurant, or going to a high school football game to watch the grandson of a friend. Then on Monday send him a note and tell him how much you enjoyed watching him play. Adventure can also be ministry.

MarriedStillLovingItNot all adventure is a shared experience. Each of us is responsible for living with a spirit of adventure. I (Gary) am a morning person. I enjoy spending an hour in the wooded area behind our house cutting kudzu vines (if you don’t live in the southeast, you will not know what kudzu is). It is a large, leafy, fast-growing vine that climbs trees, and ultimately kills the tree. So, I guess you’d say I’m a tree hugger. When I cut the vine at the ground level it dies, and eventually falls from the trees. I love the adventure I experience while working in the woods. My wife, Karolyn, is a night person. She will never venture into the woods with me in the early morning hours, even if she were a morning person. She’s far too concerned about snakes, ticks, and poison ivy. Yet she enjoys hearing about my adventures when I share with her the sights and sounds I experienced in the woods.

On the other hand, Karolyn is a symphony lover. I really wish that I could hear the sounds and distinguish the instruments as she does, but I am not a musician, and my mind is not wired to hear all the distinguishing sounds. To her, attending the symphony is an adventure. When she returns from attending the symphony with some of her close friends, I enjoy hearing her tell me about what she experienced. My joy is in seeing the spirit of adventure still alive in her heart and eyes as she shares with me.

Giving each other the freedom to develop the spirit of adventure in different venues is one of the keys to having an adventurous marriage.


1. Take a ceramics class together.

2. Encourage your creative spouse to take art lessons.

3. Visit each other’s hometown. Show them where you were born, went to school, church, etc. Make the trip even livelier by taking the grandchildren.

4. Volunteer to work together at the local soup kitchen.

5. Revisit your honeymoon destination.

6. Volunteer for a mission trip, at home or abroad.

7. Once a year visit a different church in your city.

8. Take a train ride to somewhere.

9. Go to your high school or college reunion.

10. In June, go shopping for Christmas presents.

We encourage you to make your own list of things you would like to do, as individuals or as a couple.

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