Patience is not about waiting, but your attitude while you wait.
Is your marriage struggling? Do YOU feel like you are the only one putting any effort into the relationship?
Friend, don’t grow weary…seek God and He will give you the strength to push through, because it is His will for your marriage to succeed. But he doesn’t desire for you to just wait with a spirit of hastiness and irritation. He wants you to wait with love, peace, faith, and patience (with a good attitude).
You won’t be able to do this alone. Your attempts will only lead to frustration. Call on God and allow him to fill you with new hope and love everyday.
Have you ever felt disconnected, separated, like you were living with a roommate instead of your spouse?
The roommate syndrome is very common. It can happen at any time during the marriage. For us, it occurred between the third and fourth child. I love my husband and took care of him, but the butterflies had flown away. To be totally honest, life got busy. If I wasn’t pregnant, I was breastfeeding, and if I wasn’t breastfeeding I was pregnant. I had four kids within six years. I worked and homeschooled during all my pregnancies. I allowed my children to consume me…I was depleted and exhausted…there was nothing left to give my husband.
I could feel the separation, actually it was more like the Great Wall of China. One thing I started noticing was the lack of flirting and where was his eyes, not on me, how about his hands? I had pushed him away so far that there was nothing left but a cold environment of two roommates coming in and out of a house. One bringing in the pay check to pay the bills, the other was a CEO of the house.
I never stopped loving my husband and vice versa, but the sparks and fireworks were snuffed out. If you feel like you are living this way now, let me encourage you to pray. Fight for your marriage, ask God to help you to be the best husband or wife you can be, to awaken the passion and to open your eyes to your spouse’s needs. Second, go to your husband/wife and ask them to forgive you. Don’t expect it in return, it’s about you and your part. Let God take care of your spouse in His timing. Then, you guessed it…the fun part…let’s get physical, physical…a hand on their leg as you watch tv, a back rub as you walk by them in the kitchen, or even eye contact in the midst of a party to let them know they are the only one you really care about. Roommates don’t touch, but newly married couples can’t keep their hands off each other! I don’t know about you, but I’ll take the a newlywed marriage over a roommate relationship any day.
Let me leave you with this; Even though the cloud has been cleared from your vision, it doesn’t mean it has for the love of your life. Be patient, avoid nagging, pressuring, or ingenuine affection. The Colosseum wasn’t built in a day. Continue to pray and even fast, then patiently wait for God’s most radiant pyrotechnics show!
“What if God designed marriage to make us holy more than to make us happy?” -Gary Thomas
The truth is, marriage makes us confront our ugly that we may have ignored before. Just try to walk around the house with an attitude for a couple of days, or couple of hours in our house, it won’t last long without noticing. Our spouse challenges us in good and sometimes bad ways. Thankfully, we have God to lean on, in times of frustration, when the wrong buttons have been pushed.
We need to accept and remember from the moment we said “I do” you gave up “me” and replaced it with “us”. You quickly learn not everything you do is perfect and your opinions are not facts. Marriage is amusing, intriguing, and beautiful, but it’s design is greater than our happiness.
Marriage provides growth as an individual and as a Christian. It is a constant reminder of what commitment and covenant means. It also teaches us how to forgive time and time again, like our Heavenly Father forgives us.
Friend, the moment you think your marriage is all about “your” happiness, you’re in trouble.
Mistakes are inevitable in parenting and those mistakes do not categorize you as a bad parent. The representation of bad parenting is not asking your children’s forgiveness when you mess up.
Early this week, Victoria was explaining to Kayla what letters were vowels on her worksheet. Kayla began to disagree and raise her voice, which only fueled Victoria to raise her voice even louder than Kayla’s. Quickly, the loud speaking became screaming. At this point I turned around and blurted out the words, “that’s enough, shut up!” (Sigh) Yes, shut up, the two words that I don’t use in my vocabulary, somehow popped out. Victoria immediately started crying. I was in shock, I couldn’t believe I allowed such harsh words to come out of my mouth. I calmly walked over to Victoria and apologized. I told her I was very sorry and I should have not used those words. Victoria graciously accepted and her tears stopped.
Contrary to what many parents think, apologizing to your child won’t cause the them to disrespect you; it actually will bring you closer in the long run. I am not perfect and neither are you, so when we blow it, we must be quick to admit it. That’s the kind of role model our kids need.
Marriage is made up of two people from different upbringings, personalities, ways of thinking, and maybe even different cultures. With all that going on, you add financial strain, pressures of work, a house to maintain and a couple of kids to raise and you have a pressure cooker ready to pop, unless…you have God at your center.
At the top of a pressure cooker is a regulator. The regulator releases the steam from inside the pot when it has built up. God is our regulator.
A couple of days a go my feelings were hurt by my husband. At that moment I could have exploded, put up a wall or even left the house, but I didn’t. Instead, I went to my closet and cried out to Jesus. I allowed Him to regulate the steam that was built up inside of me. I allowed God to remove the “me” out of the situation.
If ever you think you can handle your marriage on your own, be careful. It will be only a matter of time before you see an explosion! Don’t wait until it’s too late…ask God to be the regulator in your life and your marriage. Allow him to remove the steam and for healing to take place.
“as far as the east is from the west, so far has he removed our transgressions from us.” Psalm 103:12
When asked the question, “how far is the east from the west”, all have failed to answer. No one knows how far; it’s like asking how far dark is from light. Instead this verse, is an example of how far God will put the remembrance of our sins after we ask for forgiveness. The two will never meet.
When we humbly repent and ask God to forgive us, He removes our sin as though it never happen.
My friend YOU ARE FORGIVEN, walk in that freedom today and share your testimony.
Let me ask you a question. What will happen if you don’t oil your car? It will eventually break down, right? The same goes for your marriage. Unforgiveness brings isolation, destruction, and dry feelings, that will lead to divorce if not addressed.
I encourage you today friend, be slow to anger and quick to forgive. Remember just how much God has already forgiven you for. (Col. 3:13)
15 Marriage Builders (from Pastor Chris Hodges)
-love yourself first
-start each day with a hug
-say “I love you” before you part ways
-compliment freely and often
-go on a date once every week
-let her give you directions when your’re lost
-laugh at his jokes
-Men- ask her to marry you again
-Women- say yes
-never go to bed mad
-always work it out
10 Marriage Killers (from Pastor Chris Hodges)
-over commitment and physical exhaustion
-debt and conflict over how money will be spent
-interference from in-laws
-alcohol or substance abuse
-pornography, gambling, and other addictive habits
-“grass is greener” syndrome
There were many times in the early years of our marriage we would stand our ground after a disagreement. I would give the silent treatment and he would mirror it. We were young, full of pride, and had much to learn!
I remember our Pastor saying, one Sunday morning, “is it going to matter in ten years?” Wow! this question changed the way I looked at a lot of things, including petty arguments.
Now fast forward ten years later and guess what? I cannot tell you what one of our arguments were about. I remember some of the harsh words said because of the frustrated emotions, but not why we got to that point in the first place.
Jennifer Smith makes a great point, she writes, “Remember, Christ did not wait for an apology from anyone before surrendering Himself in humility to make things right.” Don’t let pride ruin your marriage and destroy your family. Be quick to say,“I’m sorry“ and mean it. Dear Lord, thank you for giving us the perfect example to live by, your son, Jesus. He loves us so much that while we were sinners, he died for us. Please give us the strength to forgive quickly, even when we aren’t to blame. Now soften our hearts and fill them with your love. In Jesus Name, Amen
“In your anger do not sin”: Do not let the sun go down while you are still angry, and do not give the devil a foothold. -Ephesians 4:26-27
“But God demonstrates his own love for us in this: While we were still sinners, Christ died for us.” Romans 5:8
Today we had a time of sharing. We talked about things we are struggling with. We then wrote them down on a piece of paper and stuck them to the cross. I explained to the girls that Christ died for these sins and these negative feelings. When we come to the cross daily, He helps us to overcome these battles.
This was more than a craft, it brought awareness to the hearts of these little girls that sin had been covered. It brought acknowledgement to the weaknesses they have without seeking God’s face everyday, all day. Prayers were spoken with repentance around our kitchen table this afternoon.
Finding ways to make the word living and alive sparks the connection our children hunger for. The next time you have a craft I challenge you to take it a step further!