5 Reasons to Take a Marriage Retreat (And Where to Take It!)
“I'm just so tired!”
“I can't even think with all the kid-noise and clutter!”
“We haven't had a date in months! We don't talk about anything other than what's on the to-do list!”
If you're feeling burnt out and disconnected from your spouse due to the busyness of life and the exhaustion of kids, it's time to take a marriage retreat!
There are 5 great reasons to take a marriage retreat that I can think of, though I'm sure there are more.
1. Time to pray together.
Hopefully you're already praying together with your spouse, at least before you go to bed at night. But I know from experience that when you're both completely exhausted, it can be hard to think coherently to spend a lot of time in prayer. Usually by the time the kids are asleep and the lights are turned out, one or both of you is already halfway asleep!
When you get away on a marriage retreat, you'll have plenty of time to spend time in prayer together without waiting until you're both half asleep at night.
What a blessing to come before the Lord together and lay the burdens of your family at his feet!
My husband and I were recently blessed to spend several nights away at the Appleview River Resort in Sevierville, Tennessee. Let me tell you, if you need some quiet time away, you should consider booking a few nights there.
A private condo was just the thing we needed to reconnect with each other and have some quality time to spend with the Lord as a couple.
It was all the more special to be there, knowing that the owners were outspoken Christians. All of their material – brochures, email confirmations, guest information in the cabin, even their text message letting us know our unit was ready for check-in – took every opportunity to tell of their love for the Lord Jesus Christ and of their desire to use their property for his glory.
2. Time to sleep.
When all the responsibilities at home are weighing you down, it's good to get away and just REST. You don't need to go, go, go during your time away. Take advantage of a nice place to stay and just hang out and sleep as long as you need to! Getting some good rest will do wonders for a marriage. Not only will it help refresh your spirit and give you a more pleasant outlook on life, it will give you a little more energy for physical intimacy with your spouse too.
I thought the bed at Appleview River Resort was super comfortable! My husband didn't like it quite as much as I did, but he still slept comfortably. It was either a memory foam mattress or else it had a memory foam topper. Either way, I slept long and hard all 3 nights we stayed there!
Of course, maybe I was sleeping so well because I got to soak in this amazing tub every night! It was so deep, and the water was so hot…oh I'm longing to go back just thinking about it. My dream house has a tub like this!
3. Time to just be together.
It's nice to be able to just be with your spouse and enjoy them for who they are, with no expectations getting in your way. No thoughts of household responsibilities can crowd in and ruin your time together. Getting away lets you just be best friends with your spouse while leaving the cares of life behind for a while!
When we went to Sevierville, we spent time taking walks together, hiking, eating together, and shopping at a leisurely pace.
We didn't have to go far to enjoy a quiet stroll together. Our condo at Appleview River Resort overlooked a lovely river walk, and we could go right outside and enjoy it any time we wanted to!
We also enjoyed quiet meals out on the balcony.
One day we went to Foxfire Mountain adventure park and took a hike through the property. It was a beautiful hike, just difficult enough to be good exercise, but not so difficult that it was miserable. We walked across America's longest swinging bridge and hiked up to a refreshing waterfall. You can see a video of our day there below:
We also went out to breakfast a couple times! We NEVER get to do that! (It's kind of hard to get babysitters in the morning, you know?)
One morning we ate at the Applewood Farmhouse Restaurant. It was right by our condo, and 2 complimentary meals came with the our room. This is such a nice place to eat. It's such a cozy environment, and the food is good too. Applewood is definitely on our “must take a return visit” list!
Another morning we ate at Flapjacks Pancake Cabin. My husband is still talking about the food he ate there two weeks later. “Any time we are back in that area, we are eating there. No if's, and's, or but's about it. That is the best breakfast I have ever had.” I'll have to agree with him that it was quite good. I was super excited that they serve gluten free pancakes too! The helpings were generous enough too that we had enough left over for breakfast the next day. I highly recommend it!
We spent one evening walking around the Tanger Outlets, holding hands, browsing the stores. It was nice to shop just for the sake of shopping and not have to worry about keeping track of kids or taking them potty.
There was a lot of evidence throughout the city of Sevierville of the respect they show for our veterans. I thought that was really great.
My husband needed a new pair of work shoes. He found a fantastic deal on some at the outlets.
4. Time to Plan
No matter your circumstances, you and your spouse no doubt have things you hope to accomplish, things that need to be done around the house, parenting and family goals you'd like to meet, etc. The biggest obstacle we've found to meeting those goals is just finding the time to sit down an plan out how to get from point A to point B.
If you have family projects that are needing to happen or if you just want to re-evaluate how you're doing on your marriage or parenting, you need to take a marriage retreat and spend some time talking and planning together!
Here we are at our condo, getting a nice dinner prepared so we could have a planning session over dinner.
5. Time to have fun!
When is the last time you did something fun together? When you go on a marriage retreat, you'll have all the time you need just to laugh and have fun! There is something about having fun that is good for both the soul and the body! (“A merry heart doeth good like a medicine.”) Plan some good old fashioned fun into your marriage retreat and it will benefit you both!
We went out to Ripley's Old MacDonald's Farm mini golf one evening and had a blast trying to beat each other! (I won't say who won, but it wasn't me. 🙂 ) We laughed when I knocked the ball completely off of the course we were on. We laughed at how seriously my husband took his shots, measuring the exact trajectory and speed he would need. He cheered for me when I followed his suggestions and got a hole in one. It was just plain fun.
One day we drove around looking for the cabin we had stayed in on our honeymoon, which was near Sevierville. We had no clue which road it was on, but we had a vague idea, so we went hunting for it. We never did find it, but we had a ton of fun getting lost in the mountains together, and we ended up being rewarded with a beautiful view!
If you're feeling overwhelmed, burnt out, and disconnected from your spouse, I encourage you to make the effort to get away and spend some time with your spouse praying, resting, playing, planning, and spending quality time together.
As you can see from the getaway we took, Sevierville, Tennessee is a fantastic place to do that. It offers the quiet you need to recharge right along with plenty of options for having fun together. I hope you'll consider investing in a trip for the health of your marriage!
Many thanks to the city of Sevierville as well as the places mentioned in this post for providing complimentary lodging and meals to facilitate this article!