My wife asked me several months ago, why I don’t write about marriage. I shocked myself with the answer I gave. I said, “I guess I don’t feel like I am very good at it.” She didn’t affirm that idea or anything, so maybe this didn’t reflect the truth as much as it tapped into my own insecurities. I believe most if not all people go up and down in confidence about the job they are doing as a spouse.
The other reason I haven’t written about marriage is due to my work as a chaplain and the many friends and family I have had marriage conversations with. There are many people who may feel as if I am talking to them. Please don’t take it that way. If I am preaching at anyone it would be myself first. How you do marriage says a lot about your character and where you are in your spiritual journey. This makes it an important subject to talk about.
I would like to share with you 7 meditations that will make you a better spouse.
- Marriage is a reflection of the Trinity. Just as God is in relationship with Himself as three different and distinct persons, so are we to apply this to our marriage. A good way for you to fail at marriage is to be just two people trying really hard together to make it work. The closer you draw to Jesus the better you can positively effect your spouse. The further you move away from God, the more you will infect your household. Your relationship with God is not separate from your marriage. Your faith is meant to be both individual and communal. You can’t be harboring unforgiveness towards your spouse and have an awesome prayer life at the same time. It just doesn’t work that way.
- Marriage is 100% commitment to a spiritual battle. When you first get married you don’t realize how weird the other person is. It is the perfect battle ground to tempt two people to say wrong things, and act in wrong ways. I try to understand things in terms of the end result I am trying to achieve. Many people try to be partially committed to their marriage. The end result of this behavior is not a marriage built on strong commitment. The good news is their will be no greater opportunity for you to live out your faith than how you treat your spouse. You will have more opportunities to forgive than anywhere else. You will have more opportunities to be there for someone when no one else will know any different. It is the best gauge for how you are living and growing as a Christian. Half hearted marriages are wide open targets for the enemy. Eventually you must decide if you are completely committed or not.
- Marriage requires repentance. This has become a counseling point for me. When two people can’t say they are sorry for little or big things they are in trouble. When their is major sin that a person refuses to leave, they are refusing to repent and the marriage is in serious condition. Now this doesn’t give you an excuse to leave, but maybe an opportunity to be the first to repent. Maybe you have done far less to contribute to the problem, but you still have played a negative part. Humilty and submission to wrong doing and a commitment to life change is hard to argue with and to be mad at.
- Marriage is teamwork. During the life of a healthy marriage you and your spouse will change many times. Priorities change, jobs change, how much each of you make will change. One of you may go through a really difficult time whether it be financial, spiritual, emotional or physical and your spouse will have to carry the heavy end for a time. Don’t keep score because chances are the other spouse will be carrying you at some point as well.
- Commit to loving your spouse. One day you and I will stand before someone who is a finisher! He finished His race! Many will remind you that Jesus didn’t get married and that is why He never sinned. Had it been right for our Savior to be married He would have done that perfectly too. The grass is not greener on the other side. Stop living in comparisons. Everything starts with loving God and loving your spouse. Marriage has seasons. Check out “The Four Seasons of Marriage,” by Gary Chapman. You will have Winters, Springs, Summers and Falls. Marriage is about loving your spouse the way God loves you both, regardless of how you feel or how well it is going right now.
- Every couple needs counseling at some point. When I say this to people they are surprised. The fact is God uses others to show us our blind spots. Sometimes to overcome our bad habits, or wrong thoughts about marriage or our spouse a couple needs a good counselor to sit us down and confront them both in a loving way. It is an act of maturity to admit you need help. It is immature to try to muscle through something and talk tough, when you should be facing reality.
- You can’t have God’s results without doing things God’s way. I am fascinated at how many people want a better marriage but when you ask them questions about their obedience to God they see this as unrelated. God loves you and your spouse, but He will not compromise His nature for you. He isn’t going to make an exception. Sin leads to death and this is true in marriage as well. To love God and love your spouse will lead to life. That is the narrow road we must all find and walk on.
Thanks for reading, be blessed and bless your spouse today.
Take the Challenge! Change your Life!
5 days a week x 52 weeks a year = 260 chapters in the New Testament. Read through the entire New Testament in one year and understand it.
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