Sometimes married people email me when they are
desperate, and want a solution to their problems right away. If a spouse
left them, they want to know how to win them back. If a spouse is in the
depths of addiction, they want to know how to get them to stop the
addiction. If a
spouse commits sexual sin against the marriage, they want to know how to
forgive, so they can hurry up and “feel” better.
I let them know that my position is not to tell
them what to do, but rather to encourage and guide them in the direction
they need to go through that encouragement. I let them know ahead of
time, there is no fast solution to fixing their marital issues.
I can steer them on the right path, but they have to walk that
path. All of these marital issues should be rectified through the
workings of the Lord.
Ultimately, the end results come from their faith
in God and how far they are willing to allow the power of Christ to go
to work in their hearts and minds. What are you willing to do to save
your marriage? Are you willing to focus on what YOU can do to change
yourself, and bring harmony into the marriage? Are you willing to give
of yourself without asking for anything in return? Are you willing to
ask for forgiveness for yourself so you can forgive your spouse?
A biggy in marriage is when couples wait until they
are desperate to do something about their marriage instead of resolving
problems as they come up. Many problems in marriage become compounded
and multiply until the marriage hardly has any hope left. I have seen
this happen over and over again, and then in desperation couples want a
miraculous restoration of the marriage!
Well, it doesn’t work like that. The longer couples wait to work on marital issues, the more
difficult it will be to restore the marriage. Overtime, couples lose
touch with each other, and they talk to outside influences about their
marital problems, all the while getting reassured they are indeed
married to the wrong person and to leave them. Or they become intimately
involved with someone else, etc. These
situations always give couples validation for leaving the marriage.
The most beneficial method for dealing with issues
in marriage is to resolve them as soon as possible. Don’t sweep
problems under the rug and then feel resentful about it later. If you
need to forgive, forgive. If you need to stop doing something that you
know to be wrong, stop doing what is wrong. If you need to apologize for
something you did, apologize, if you feel a certain way about something,
talk about it. Don’t let negative and destructive feelings dictate
The most beneficial way to handle marital issues is
from the foundation of the Creator of marriage. No one cares more about
your marriage than God. Ask
God – He will provide.
“I am the vine, and my Father is the gardener. He
cuts off every branch in me that bears no fruit, while every branch that
does bear fruit, he prunes so that it will be even more fruitful. You
are already clean because of the word I have spoken to you. Remain in
me, and I will remain in you. No branch can bear fruit by itself; it
must remain on the vine. Neither can you bear fruit unless you remain in
me. “I am the vine; you are the branches. If a man remains in me and I
in him, he will bear much fruit; apart from me you can do nothing.”
(John 15:1-5 NIV)