It’s humbling to recognize your selfishness when you thought you were doing something good. I knew I had some selfish tendencies that I needed to guard against. But this one act of selfishness caught me by surprise. In fact, up until two years ago, Janet and I both thought of this story in a completely different way.
Then two years ago I was reading What Did You Expect, by Paul David Tripp. One of my all time favorite marriage books. We were using his material for our Marriage Builders class and I was reviewing our next lesson. Then something he said in the book took me back to one weekend when our marriage was in crisis. Read more
Your marriage covenant is not an entitlement. And you should not take it for granted. You don’t get to say vows before a minister and expect that to be your guarantee to lifelong marriage. It takes more than that.
I believe many marriages suffer from abuse and/or neglect because people treat their marriage covenant as an entitlement. Their hunt is over. They caught their prey. Now they don’t have to give their marriage the same work as they did when they were dating. When their former boyfriend or girlfriend had the freedom to walk away.
We believe in covenant 100%
It’s easy to find yourself in a fight with your spouse without knowing how to let it go. You know you don’t want to be fighting. But the thing you’re fighting over seems too important, so you believe you must stand your ground. When this happens you need to know there are times when you have to lose the battle to save what you love.
There is a story in the bible that I think sets a great example for couples to follow. It’s a story that demonstrates the wisdom of king Solomon and how he resolved the conflict of two women. Read more
I am grieved by the troubles in our world today. Everywhere we turn people are against one another. There are divisions over race, religious views, political views, social and economic status. And for many of us there is division in our own families. So I think everyone would agree, we need peacemakers.
I know this is a marriage blog and so I’m not trying to turn this into a current events article. But I believe some of the lessons we try to communicate to marriages, we can also apply to the world around us. After all, marriage is all about the journey of becoming united as one flesh. So why wouldn’t the same principles of unity work for our world around us? Read more
I came to the place in my life that I could no longer run from the pain. My life was a mess and I needed help. I had stuffed all my pain and hurt deep inside from the wounds from others and wounds that were self inflicted. So I turned to a counselor to help me out of my prison.
I was dealing with abandonment issues from both my mother and my father. I had been abused from early childhood all the way through my adult life. Three different men molested me from age 6 to ll. One of the men did it more than 20 times. I was date raped twice when I was a teenager. I was physically abused from my father and a couple of times in my first marriage. And I dealt with emotional abuse from my father, my first husband, and in my marriage with Jack. Read more
The challenges we face in life are tough sometimes. Challenges with our health, our job, our children, or our marriage are the type of challenges almost everyone will have to deal with at one point or another. But in every challenge we face we have to make a conscious decision. Will we choose to let the situation make us better, or will we let it make us bitter?
I’ve seen the importance of this choice time after time. Not only in my own life, but also in the lives of many others. And every time a person allows themselves to become bitter there is always a severe price that comes with making the wrong choice. Let me share a few examples. Read more
I will never forget the phone call I made that day. I was fighting to save my marriage and after weeks of sleeping on the couch because I refused to move out, I finally seen a glimmer of hope. Janet started showing she was willing to at least talk about us and ask questions that sounded as if she was considering giving us another chance.
But for her to give us another chance, she needed to be free from this other guy. So it was then, after I started feeling this new hope, that I felt I needed to make a phone call and talk to this guy. If only, I could get him to back off and give her some space so she could make the decision that would be best for her and our children. Then maybe I thought, we would have a chance.
After all these years I don’t remember too many details of that phone call, except for two statements. As our conversation started turning into more of an argument I heard him say, “well you know, it takes two to make a marriage!” And before I knew it and without any hesitation I answered back, “yeah, but it only takes one to quit!” Read more
Believing your marriage can be healed is tough sometimes. The separation between you and your spouse is so far apart it feels hopeless to close the gap. You can’t undo all the things that went wrong. You can’t undo your history. And so now you look at your situation and all you see is a mountain that feels impossible to climb.
I’ve been there and I know how it feels to want with all my heart to see my marriage healed. While at the same time I had to face a very tough situation that made what I was hoping for appear impossible. But the one thing that kept me from being overwhelmed and discouraged was I dared to believe God and what His word teaches me.
You see, I believe God has a completely different view of your situation than what you’re capable of seeing right now. Jesus made this same distinction between what we see and what God sees when He said these words.
Matthew 19:26 And looking at them Jesus said to them, “With people this is impossible, but with God all things are possible.” Read more
Do you want to know the reason it took 4 times of almost getting a divorce before our marriage straighten out? Do you want to know what had to change before we could have the marriage we both wanted? The thing that had to change was I had to stop trying to just smooth things over.
There was a cycle we were going through and it was because of the things I kept doing wrong. Time after time I kept finding a way to undo all the previous good I did to fix our marriage. Each time after we reached our breaking point I would begin to do everything I could to become a better husband. I didn’t want our marriage to end so I tried to change and I thought I was making some serious progress. But in the end, all I was doing was going through my own cycle.