What causes two people who once vowed to love and cherish each other, to become distant? How does the love that once existed between you and your mate begin to fade to the point one or both of you feel trapped in a loveless marriage?
My experience in this area enticed me to share my views with you all today. I know exactly how a bad marriage feel. I’m less sure of what a good marriage is.
Any marriage consisted of two imperfect humans is going to have its problems and its difficult circumstances.
These problems aren’t the real problem our response to them are. No matter what you’re going though help is available soon as we ask.
Totally Self Centered
A person cannot be in a marriage only thinking about them-self.
Children think selfishly. Adults have to understand no matter if it’s how to spend the income tax refund or which way to place a roll toilet paper couples are going to have their differences.
Do yourself a favor and take a self-examination.
Ask yourself: “Am I truly married at heart, or am I still thinking and acting as a single person?”
“Would I rather be happy or would I rather be right?”
I can admit I never self-examined myself at any point in my first marriage and it help lead me a divorce.
I’m not saying the divorce was entirely my fault, but I can see there were situations where I could have responded differently.
I could have responded like a man.
And even though my current wife Nicole can tells me daily, “Divorce is not an option”, there is still daily maintenance I need to do.
I’ve seen people go from being loyal and supportive in their marriages then transforming into spouses who only expect personal fulfillment—often at the cost of their husband or wife.
Being self-centered will kill any relationship. If you want your marriage to grow, you must move beyond being self-centered.
Proverbs 12:18 Reckless words pierce like a sword, but the tongue of the wise brings healing.
Words can either build up a marriage or tear it down.
It’s not wise to speak when emotions are high.
Harsh speech may leave emotional scars that linger long after the dispute has ended.
It sometimes lead to violence. It is vital that you and your spouse learn to handle disagreements in a peaceful, respectful way.
But if a disagreement does evolve into an argument remember that arguing does not always involve shouting. (Ephesians 4:31)
Some people grew up in a dysfunctional environment so that’s all they know. Wisdom is taking an honest look at how you as an individual might be contributing to the problem.
What role are you playing in it? One cannot be understood without trying to understand.
Don’t downplay your spouse’s viewpoints. Their opinions matter too so be quick to listen and slow to speak. (James 1:19)
Power of Commitment
Matthew 19:6 “So they are no longer two, but one. Therefore what God has joined together, let man not separate”
The hard times in my marriage have brought me and my wife a greater commitment as a couple because it helped us become less self-focused and realize what’s important in life: God and each other.
Couples solemnly vow before God, family, and friends to stay together through hell and high water.
But what often gets lost is that marriage is not about us as much as it’s about God. Yes, we’re supposed to be committed to each other. But first commit to God.
When problems arise in your marriage, ask God what His view on the matter. Decisions made off emotions and incomplete understandings are cancerous to a marriage. Get understanding. (Proverbs 4:7)
Communication is possible by trust and a mutual understanding.
These qualities are a result of a marriage that’s viewed as a lifelong relationship.
Couples first approach marriage with optimism but what happens when the optimism fades? When things are not looking so bright and when the marriage is under attack?
Learning to communicate in a loving way can save a marriage. Here are a few characteristics to recognize that may block good communication:
It’s said that a happy marriage is a union of two people who forgives often.
Failure to actively listen is a hurdle that needs overcoming to get good communication.
I’m not a marriage counselor. I’m sharing what I’ve learned from my experience.
I know what is working for me now compared to what didn’t work in the past. The difference is that I now know through self-examination and God’s will, a marriage will not only survive, but thrive, regardless of what life brings.
There is hope. The Bible can save your marriage.