Marriage requires a certain level of maturity as well as self control. It has not always been present in my marriage but it is what has kept us together for all these years. Once we both learned to choose our battles and not wear our feelings on our shirt sleeve, things got much easier . Now don’t get me wrong, it is a real process which takes some of us longer than others and to be honest, we may never really master it but if we get the basic premise of love and unselfish behavior mastered, life tends to change dramatically.
Recently one of my favorite local gospel personalities said, “Pride makes excuses but maturity makes adjustments”. Oh my goodness! How many times have you made an excuse for behaving badly towards one another? Well, maturity keeps you working at doing what is right, and less likely from responding in anger, and definitely not intentionally being hurtful. Here’s the thing, we can not sustain change without Gods strength to help us, no matter how bad we really want to it’s hard and we must always check our motives for the change. Ask yourself, “Did I ask God to help me to change for me? “Do I really even want to change” and once you identify your reason for change then go to your Heavenly Father and ask Him to help you with this process, ask Him to help you to love one another just as He loves you, unconditionally. Now all you have to do is start behaving in love as you continue to pray for Gods strength to sustain that change in you.
You may fail a few times before you get it, but “Practice makes perfect“. You will know when you have matured beyond your own ability because you will start to give more of yourself than you may be receiving. Without much effort, you walk away from confrontations instead of speaking in anger, and most things that angered you in the past may even become comical. because Gods help, you now see how childish some reactions really are.
“Love (charity) starts at home and then spreads abroad” Sir Thomas Browne.
So, I’ve been very impatient with my husband lately, you know how we get. Yes, I’ve been nagging and complaining about littlethings like him sucking his teeth instead of getting a tooth pick and getting totally irritated by how he eats chips very loudly or, this is big! how he always finds a way not to be wrong.
Well! Yesterday morning as soon as we got in the car for church the radio dj said, “if you are happy with 90% of your spouses behavior then why not see the other 10% as being under construction”. In other words deal with it with grace.
Then when we get to church the Pastor in his sermon said “If your passion is not your spouse, being with them and meeting all their needs, then you are missing the mark”. I felt as if God spoke to both of us in the span of 1 hour, and we both heard Him and we quietly committed to change.
1 Peter 4:8 Above all love each other deeply because love covers over a multitude of (flaws) sin
Let’s keep it 100 (real). Marriage is not always easy but the way in which we go through life struggles with spouses has everything to do with how we come out of any situation. It is vitally important that we operate in kindness and understanding. Put yourself in your spouses position in that moment of confusion (love), show love and compassion (kind), and in most cases (not always), you will get love and compassion in return (humble).
1 Corinthians 13:4 NIV
Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud.
While on a road trip recently , my husband was listening to one of his favorite old school CDs when a song (Put it on paper) came on. It reminded me of something our minister said in his sermon that Sunday . He talked about how he counseled a couple who were having problems first of all because the man in the relationship didn’t want to get married. His statement to the minister was, “Why do I need a piece of paper to say I’m committed to a person”. The minister responded so wisely in my opinion with this statement; He said, Do you drive, you must have a drivers license. Do you have a weapon, then you must have a permit to carry it. Do you fish, then you have to have a fishing license, So if you are willing to obtain a license for all those things, why not love her enough to do the legal and spiritually correct thing and marry her if you are truly committed to her and the relationship???
And just this morning I heard on the morning show why Opra Winfrey said she couldn’t marry long time partner excuses, excuses, excuses! Bottom line is, don’t allow anyone to devalue you with their selfish excuses or childhood issues and personal hang ups. If they aren’t willing to do the right thing by you, they might not be the right person for you.
Hebrews 13:4. Marriage should be honored by all, and the marriage bed kept pure, for God will judge the adulterer and all the sexually immoral.
When People of faith get married, the Bible says “we become one body” in the site of God. Being “One” means, We win together or We lose together! Nothing is just about us as individuals any longer.
Let’s learn to work together, save together, cook together, clean the house together, conversate together, live, love and laugh together, and even cry together. That’s what growing together is! It’s not how much more or less than you, “I can do”. Do unto others as we would have them do unto us” Luke 6:31. We don’t hold back or hold out on ourselves, do we! We do the best we can for us, so if we are truly “One”, act like it. Selfishness begets selfishness.
Mark 12:31, “Love your neighbor (that includes your spouse) as yourself. For there is no greater commandment”.
I watched a dance show the other night and a couple who were contestants shared candidly about how they had trouble in their relationship, and how it was at that point they had to make a decision whether they were going to work out their relationship or allow their marriage to fail. They chose to make a conscious effort to stay married each and every day through any bad feelings or misunderstandings in order to work out their differences and make their marriage work.
Sometimes things get so hard in our relationships that we must take extreme measures if we are going to survive together. Isuggest from my own experience that you try to start each day praying together, before the stress of the day begins. Start each day committing to staying married, committing to working out issues, not arguing, not fighting, not fussing and not sweating the small stuff. It’s a very intimate moment and it will allow you to hear from the heart of the person you love.
As I said to some good friends yesterday, choose your battles wisely, don’t bicker about every little thing, things that you know deep down in your heart aren’t going to change much, if at all. Resolve to find a better way to deal with those things for peace sake, and above all remember that God looks over our faults, so let’s learn to be gracious and merciful towards one another as well.
1 Corinthians 3:14, love is patient, love is kind
Roman 12:18, if possible so much as it depends on you, live at peace with one another