Dinner and a movie - the classic date for all ages. For many of us if we started dating in college or high school, dinner and a movie was probably one of the most common dates we went on. Interestingly enough, my wife and I never went on a movie date until after we were married. Before we were married I remember desiring to just be with her so much that the idea of taking my attention off of her for a movie didn't sound all that fun. As life has progressed a few years with young children and more responsibility we often have found ourselves in the movie theater due to lack of energy and often times lack of planning on my part.
With all that said, I am by no means saying that going to the movies with your spouse is a bad thing. I have found that it does require a little more effort to connect. It's very easy to become passive.
Here is a dating idea that my wife and I have done before. Planning a date to a movie can be fun, but as Christians it is worth a little caution in what we watch. My wife and I like to use plugged in.com to get a Christian perspective on a movie before we go. We pick our movies carefully, but that doesn't mean we restrict ourselves only to PG movies. I personally believe we are free in Christ and it is between you and Jesus about what you feel you should not watch. Each person and couple may be more or less sensitive to certain kinds of content. I believe it is best for us as Christians to avoid films with explicit nudity and sexual content.
If you are on a budget, most movie theaters offer an evening matinee on an off day of the week. In our town, Tuesday evening movies are usually $6 per person.
Now that I've rambled about some of the basics of movie selection and budget, its time to think about planning the date. As a husband I've found it is important for me to establish connection with my wife in everyday life and on dates. Dates in which we talk a lot and connect rank higher on my wife's scale. To build that connection if you can do something unexpected and thoughtful the day or your date or even a few days before you can help establish that connection.
Something that I have found that blesses my wife is to leave a random hand written note for her in a unexpected place. Tell her how much you appreciate her and love her and maybe leave the note on her breakfast plate, in a drawer she is sure to visit, or any other place she can find it unexpectedly. You might even include something like "I look forward to spending time with you on our date tonight". This builds anticipation for her and you as well.
When you choose your movie if you can choose a movie that is inspirational or heart touching it may give you more opportunity to connect with your wife. During the moving if you think your wife is being touched by a certain part in the film, put your arm around her to connect with her and let her know you are experiencing it with her. As a married christian couple it is also quite okay in my opinion to kiss your wife during a moving, granted you may want keep it tasteful so as not to be disrespectful to your fellow movie goers (passionate making out can always be caught up on later in the evening :) ).
After the movie, take your wife somewhere you can talk whether that is a coffee shop or a park. On our last date, my wife and I picked up a light bite to eat after the moving then parked beside a park and talked in the car for nearly an hour. Rather than just forgetting the movie, talk about what you both liked and didn't like. Was there anything that meant something to her in the film? What were the positives and negatives about the characters. Movies can be a great way to explore life and process how we should respond to things in our culture. Also, if your wife decides to rabbit trail to a different topic just go with it, the point is to connect - to love her and get to know her very soul.
My fellow christian men I hope you have many fun and creative dates with your wife in you future.