Some thoughts on marriage from a road trip (Part 1)

Things I learned about marriage…from a road trip.

For the first seven years of our marriage, my husband’s parents lived about 6 hours away, so we’ve been on many, many road trips.  Five years ago, with the birth of our first son, they got even more interesting.  And, being that I’m one of those people who overthinks everything, I just knew there was a lesson in there somewhere, and a while back I was praying and thinking and it just hit me….So, here is part 1 of the things about marriage that I learned from a road trip (or several)–look for Part 2 tomorrow.
1. He’s the driver.

Okay, maybe it’s not this way for you, but when we go on trips, 99% of the time, my husband does the driving.  We’ve worked out a system for these road trips.  He has the responsibility of navigating, and getting us where we need to go, safely.  That’s a big responsibility, and it requires focus.  So, I’m in charge of everything else—the details, if you will.  I play with the boys and try to keep them entertained.  I put in movies for them, make up games for them, pass back some snacks or new toys when they get bored.  At the same time, I’m also doing nearly the same things for Chad, and trying to be a support for him.  We have different responsibilities, but it works.  He needs to focus on his responsibility of getting us where we need to go, safely.  It’s more difficult for him to do that if he’s also trying to dig around for snacks for the children, or if they are out of control being upset, or fighting with each other, etc.  It is dangerous to drive distracted.  If I don’t do my job properly, then the distractions that would ensue may inhibit him from doing his job properly.  We work together, each doing our own part, to achieve the same goal.

As I pondered this one day, it occurred to me this is a lot like life and marriage.  God has called my husband to certain responsibilities.  He is called to love our family as Christ loved the church, to lead us in God’s calling, and to work and provide for us.  I believe that I was created to be his “helper,” as detailed in the creation account in Genesis.  Women are called (many times over in God’s word) to be keepers of the home and to manage the home.

As I thought about this in comparison to our road trip, it made sense.  A husband’s godly calling comes with a lot of responsibility.  To love his wife as Christ loved the church?  That’s a high calling indeed.  He can’t possibly do it without God’s help.

But, I can help him too.  Just as my help on a road trip allows him to fully focus on getting us safely to our destination, I believe that my help in life can help him to focus more fully on his calling from God to love his wife as Christ loved the church and all that that entails.  If a man really accepts that calling, he bears a burden of responsibility, and the little things I do to manage our home and children can allow him to more fully focus on that.  In short, if I fulfill my calling, if I do my job, then he can more easily do his.  I am his helper.

(Find the next post here.)


  1. says

    Excellent comparison, Crystal! Too often we wives want our own steering wheel on the passenger side, when it’s so much more restful just to help him keep both hands on the wheel. Great post!

    • Crystal says

      Thanks, Meghan…Oh, and trying to drive from the passenger side is coming up in part 2…I was getting a little wordy for my 3 points.

  2. says

    Your road trips sound a lot like ours! I have driven like 1 time in 8 years – LOL! My favorite thing about road trips is that my husband and I actually sit and talk. We have nothing else to do, nothing else grabbing our attention (when the kids are napping) so its a very intimate time for us. We love listening to sermons too! We learn a lot of God and each other on road trips.

    • Crystal says

      You’re so right, it is nice to have the time to just talk…without 25 other things demanding attention :)

  3. says

    Great analogy, Crystal! So many young women today fear submission, but it’s really nothing to fear. When we submit to God, we are placing ourselves under His provision and protection. When we submit to our husband’s leadership, we’re doing the same—placing ourselves under his provision and protection. As we work together in an orderly manner, each respecting the other’s role, we experience harmony in the home. Blessings to you and your husband as you “train up” your boys in the way they should go.

    • Crystal says

      Cynthia, I think we all struggle with this at times–it goes against our nature to an extent. Blessings to you and your family!

  4. says

    This is such a great comparison! We work the same way…in car trips and in life! Its funny that whenever we switch and I drive, we almost always end up getting lost. HA!

    Thanks for linking up with WIP Wednesday!

  5. says

    I love this analogy! I am so glad my husband was wired to manage his responsibility and I was perfectly wired by God to be His helper and manage of the kids. He takes His God given responsibility of head of this house as serious as his responsibility to take us from point A to point B safely. I am grateful for God’s design and your post highlights the beauty in His design. Thank you for sharing such beautiful insight!

  6. says

    So love this analogy. Such truth. Thankful for a godly husband who drives our family both on roadtrips and life. Such a blessing. Thanks for sharing! Blessings!

  7. says

    Crystal, I know this is old, but I just had to tell you that your analogy is spot on! That’s how it is with us too. I never drive if he’s with me. In fact the only time I do is when I pick him up after he drops his car off at the mechanic. It’s so strange, him being the passenger, that I get nervous driving. Crazy right? It doesn’t help that he’s a cop and I feel like he’s silently critiquing my driving! ;) Anyway, I’m heading over to read pt 2! :)

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