marriage monday
Marriage Monday: July 9, 2018

Healing conflict in marriage is a matter of HOW you ask the question.

“Why am I HERE?


When I ask this question emphasizing the situation, the conflict & problems, my attitude is “I don’t deserve this!”  I may wonder how I ever got here, and what I could possibly have done to deserve this conflict in my marriage. This mindset removes any responsibility on my part for my response to my spouse. It’s a “me versus you” attitude. One has to win and one has to lose. And you better believe I’m the one who wins!

This mindset causes us to walk out on Jesus and marriage.

“Why am I here?”

If I am willing to ask God the question a little differently, emphasizing my role, my purpose, and perseverance, it changes everything. This doesn’t mean my spouse is innocent, or that I caused the conflict. It’s just acknowledging that my response is my responsibility. My attitude becomes “What can I do to strengthen my marriage?”  or “How can I grow spiritually in this conflict?”

This mindset causes us to reach out to Jesus and our marriage.

“I’m not saying that I have this all together, that I have it made. But I am well on my way, reaching out for Christ, who has so wondrously reached out for me. Friends, don’t get me wrong: By no means do I count myself an expert in all of this, but I’ve got my eye on the goal, where God is beckoning us onward—to Jesus. I’m off and running, and I’m not turning back.”
‭‭Philippians‬ ‭3:12-14‬ ‭MSG‬‬

marriage monday
Marriage Monday: July 2, 2018

From the moment we said “I do”, God followed us down the aisle and kept us in His sight as we went on our way. 18 years later we stopped going our own way, turned around and invited Him into our marriage. We aren’t perfect, but the way we‘ve chosen has been filled with peace, passion, and purpose. We are so blessed to be on the journey with Jesus.

“And surely I am with you always, to the very end of the age.”
‭‭Matthew‬ ‭28:20‬ ‭NIV‬‬

marriage monday
Marriage Monday: June 25, 2018

Love is a gift from God. Unless I receive that gift, I will come to my marriage empty-handed.

“This is my command: Love one another the way I loved you. This is the very best way to love.”
‭‭John‬ ‭15:12 MSG‬‬

marriage monday
Marriage Monday: June 18, 2018

BECOMING one is a process, but it doesn’t ‘just happen’ over time.

After almost 42 years we are still on the journey. Our process has had highs and lows; but we are intentional about keeping our relationship on the front burner. Some of the ways we invest in the process include going to marriage retreats, praying together, working through issues instead of burying them, and speaking truth in love. We are in community with other intentional couples.

It’s never too late to become intentional about BECOMING one. Here’s a good place to start: Couple Checkup.

“and the two will become one flesh.”
Mark 10:8 NIV

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Marriage Monday: June 11, 2018

marriage mondayWork for your marriage with all your heart because a myriad of distractions will threaten to put it on the back burner. A marriage on the front burner provides stability and peace so all the other pots stop boiling over.
“Whatever you do, work at it with all your heart, as working for the Lord.”
‭‭Colossians‬ ‭3:23‬ ‭NIV‬‬

Marriage on the Back Burner

We mentor married couples, and one of the most challenging issues of mentoring is finding times to meet. Their lives are frequently in chaos. They often have financial problems, organization problems, parenting problems, extended family problems, job problems, and not unsurprisingly, extremely high stress.
We will tend to meet with them once or twice, and then they kind of fall off the radar screen, and don’t answer our calls or emails. The chaos has gotten to them again, and they don’t think they have time to work on their marriage. It’s gotten assigned to the back burner.
It’s so important for them to see how critical their marriage is to everything else. And the most important element in their relationship is how they communicate to one another. Communication is the keystone of every great relationship. The attitudes, words, facial expressions, and tone of voice convey our true feelings when we communicate. There is really nothing more important in a marriage than communicating in humility and love. That’s why we always start with communication when we are working with a couple in conflict.
And yet, all those other things crowd in, and they put the boring communication exercises on the back burner. Then everything goes to Pott! HAHA!
If we live as God’s word says, and do everything as if we are doing it for the Lord, things tend to fall into place. God’s word defines the mature Christian as one who ‘speaks truth in love’ in Ephesians 4:15. I find it interesting that this one example was chosen as the benchmark of maturity. It seems simple, but actually it is anything but easy. Most of us tend to major on the truth but are weak on speaking in love; or we major on the love part but are weak on speaking truth. Both are necessary, and both are equally important.
Speaking truth in love is called assertive communication. It’s neither aggressive (when we major on truth) or passive (when we major on love). It’s balanced. It takes spiritual maturity to have the honesty and humility to communicate this way.
If each spouse feels safe speaking truth in love, feels understood, and listened to, the marriage will thrive. All other components of the marriage tend to fall into place with this one building block of healthy relationships. If communication is a strength for a couple, all other problems suddenly become solvable:
  • conflicts
  • forgiveness
  • finances
  • household duties
  • parenting
  • career choices
  • extended family issues
  • sexual relationship
  • goals

Marriage on the Front Burner

 

If your marriage could use a tune-up, contact me and let’s talk. I can help you get started with the Prepare-Enrich assessment that will give you a snapshot of the strengths and growth areas of your marriage. I can point you to resources to help you get your marriage back on the front burner.

 

..because U count, deb

marriage monday

Three simple steps to cultivating a great marriage:
1. Do good
2. Do pray
3. Do thank

I DO! Sometimes.  When I DON’T, it teaches me how to improve the next time. Failures didn’t stop Edison, and they won’t stop me. We are all on a journey and none of us has arrived yet. Strive for the three DO’s to cultivate a great marriage. Do You?

“Make sure that nobody pays back wrong for wrong, but always strive to do what is good for each other and for everyone else. Rejoice always, pray continually, give thanks in all circumstances; for this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus.”
‭‭1 Thessalonians‬ ‭5:15-18‬ ‭NIV‬