Dr. Kim’s new book “14 Keys to Lasting Love: How to Have the Marriage You’ve Always Wanted” comes out on January 8, 2019. This book will change your marriage, and it will most certainly change you. Over the next few weeks, Dr. Kim will highlight some of the principles from the book in his weekly “Insights.”
I know Russell Westbrook. In case you don’t, he plays basketball for the Oklahoma City Thunder. He was the NBA Most Valuable Player in 2017. I can tell you his stats. I can tell you where he lives and all kinds of interesting information about him. I can tell you his wife’s name and the name of his first child. I can tell you where he grew up, where he went to school, and when he was drafted by an NBA team. I can tell you all of that and more about Russell Westbrook because I Googled him. I already knew many of the things that Google told me, but I learned a lot that I did not know.
Now back to my first statement. Do I really know Russell Westbrook? No. I know a lot about him, but I don’t know him. I’ve never even been introduced to Russell. His wife, brother, and extended family know Russell. They know what he does each day, what he thinks about, what he worries about, and what he likes and does not like. They know Russell in deep and intimate ways. I don’t.
I know Nancy Kimberling. I know everything about her without ever doing a Google search. Besides, I know so much more than Google knows about her. We met when she was 18 and have spent as much time as we could together since then. I know what she does each day, what she likes, what she does not like, what she worries about, and much, much more. I know her. Knowing Nancy on a deep, intimate level is a big part of what makes our marriage work. Her knowledge of me is equally intimate. Knowing each other at this level is part of what the Bible is talking about when it says “the two become one.” We know each other.
On a scale of one to ten, with ten being the highest, how well do you know your spouse? Now that you have your number, how do you feel about it? Is it where you want it to be? Is it lower or higher? Is it where you expected to be at this point in your marriage? When Nancy and I married, I knew her. We spent two years getting to know each other, and what I knew of her was why I wanted to marry her. Do I know her better today? Absolutely. But that did not just happen. If all I knew about Nancy was what I knew after two years, I would have missed out on so much. Through the years of our marriage, we have had thousands of touch points that have taken our knowledge of each other to new levels. They bonded us closer to each other and they still do.
Most of us can think of at least one couple that just “exists” together in their marriage. They are strangers living in the same house, and most of them are in that situation because they didn’t take advantage of the touch point opportunities that were in front of them every day.
In our marriage, we have gone through a few seasons of “existing.” Looking back, I hated those times. It was so far away from what I wanted our marriage to be. With God’s help, we made it through those seasons and embraced daily touch points again.
Knowing Nancy gives me not only outward joy but also inward joy. Knowing her meets those needs God placed inside of me for her to meet. Do you want that for the two of you? No matter what your “knowing” number is today, it can get better by just looking for and taking advantage of the touch points that are right in front of you every single day.