From Couples to Combatants

Gen 2:24 For this reason a man shall leave his father and his mother, and be joined to his wife; and they shall become one.

In the past few days, I have learned of marriages that are in trouble.  All of these marriages are in different quarters of the U.S.A.

Three days ago I was speaking to a Pastor.  He confided in me that his congregation is having a lot of marital problems.  He too is going through “issues” with his wife.  The pastor stated that the women were going through a sort of “I need more from a man” type of thing.  While the men lodged similar complaints.   We’ll revisit this comment in a moment or so.

Two days ago I received a call from a young man who told me about all the great things that were going on in his life.  Then he proceeded to tell me that his marriage is on the rocks.  He decided not to fight for his marriage.  He is “tired of trying.”  Regretfully, his words echoed what I’ve heard many men and women saying lately.

Yesterday I met with a young man who wanted to discuss the topics I present on at speaking engagements.  Well, that was the original reason for the meeting.  I think we might have talked about that issue for about 30 seconds.  We did, however, speak about issues he and some of his friends were having with their spouses. Yes, it was a different person but the story was the same. It appears there is a wave of attacks on the institution of marriage.  Is that happening in your area?  No, seriously I would like to know.

Today, I was told about a brother in Christ who has backslidden (that’s Christian-talk for, “He turned his back on God”).

We will briefly look at this from two perspectives.  First, lets look at it from a secular view.  It appears that God’s institution of marriage, one man one woman, is under attack.  From a legal prospective we are fighting to keep the definition a biblical one.  You know you’ve reached a Tipping Point (when the abnormal becomes the normal) when we have to defend our definition of marriage.  Although we’re presently talking about this issue from a secular view, we have ministers standing up for same-sex marriages. You’ve probably read that Christian marriages end in divorce at about the same rate as non-Christian. Those numbers can be debated but that’s for another article.  So we have infighting and fighting from outside forces.

Recently relocated to another state.  The movers were engaged in a “deep” conversation.  One guy said his wife was getting on his nerve.  Later he said that “She’s really my girlfriend but I call her my wife since we live together.”  This type of thinking helps to diminish the institution of marriage also.  regrettably, some “practicing” Christians live with their lovers.  So, why would a unbeliever do any different?  Following God and His mandates aren’t conditional.  We have to live by His standards.  Actions such as what we’ve been discussing show a complete disregard to what Christians believe in.  Christians look at marriage as a holy thing.  Others look at it as simply a comfortable arrangement to be discarded when no longer needed.  TV shows, magazines and the music industry seem to glorify casual sex and an affairs.  This is contrary to our beliefs.

Now, lets look at it from a biblical worldview.  Marriage isn’t always easy.  It will not start with the man riding in on a white horse and picking up his soon-to-be bride.  Then they live happily ever after.  No, we have to work at and on our marriages.  We will not live a life without problems and issues just because we’re Christians.  Look at your family and your friends and see if their marriages are in trouble.  Is your marriage in trouble?  We are in a Spiritual battle and the devil is bringing the fight to us.  We must fight for our marriages.

We’ve said a lot of things. Now, what’s the WIFM (What’s In It For Me)?  This has been a call to action.  We need all Christians in the fight.  This is an All Hands On Deck call.  We need each other.  We need to pray for one another.  Even if you’re aren’t married, we need you praying for those who are married.  We need to stand our ground and fight to for our marriages.

I said that we’ll revisit the comments about, “I want more from my spouse.” Let’s look at a few facts:

  • We need to work on our communication. Some studies indicate lack of communication as one of, if not the leading cause of divorce.  You have to work on how you communicate to your spouse.  If you aren’t talking right now…maybe right now is the time to try.  Each passing moment can’t be taken back.  We must recognize that the gravitational pull to our ego can be great.  It’s not about you, it’s about you two.  It’s about you two knowing each other better.
  • If you dug that hole you’re in then it might take time for you to dig your way out.  We all make mistakes.  Things won’t always go as planned. If your marriage is in trouble, it didn’t happen overnight.  So it probably won’t become better overnight.  However, it will get better if you start trying.
  • Sex isn’t a cure-all for martial woes.  But don’t let the lack of intimacy be a foothold to let the devil in (1 Cor 7:5).

Practical advise

  • Pray with your spouse today.  How much should you pray?  Although this isn’t theologically sound, it is a good practical saying.  Pray Until Something Happens.  P.U.S.H.
  • Study the word of God with your spouse.  Men, Scripture tells us to wash our wives with the Word.  Don’t take this as I’m saying all the problems are laid in the laps of men.  That’s not my approach.  I think it’s likely both parties can be at fault.  Yet that doesn’t excuse us from not showering our wife with the Word.  Are you showering her?  If not, today is a good time to start.  You do not have to be a biblical scholar.  Start little by little.  Read Psalms over the next five months.  You two will grow closer.  Women, are you respecting your husband?  No, really.  If you say it with an attitude…it will come across wrong.  I don’t know your husband but I know men always want to be the “man” to their woman.  You’re the apple of his eye.
  • Listen to what the other person says is bothering them.  It may seem trivial to you but it could be major to them.  Remember, you might think your comment is written in sand but the receiving party might think those words are written in stone.  We all know it takes longer to get breakdown stone.  Make today the day you take off one stone from the brick wall that stands between you two.
  • Go to Christian counseling.  It might be therapeutic to have your view aired.  When i worked for the Inspector General, I had a governing thought when I conducted an inspection.  There are three sides to a story.  “Your side, my side and the truth.”  Who knows, both of you might be right.  Yet, being right isn’t as important as being in a loving and thriving relationship
  • When I was a kid we took our car to “Shade Tree Mechanics.”  A Shade tree mechanic is a person who is a good mechanic but works on cars in their backyard. You don’t get any guarantees from this mechanic.  This mechanic may not have any formal training.  They may be good and talented but they don’t have the credentials.  Are you taking marital advice from someone who can’t stay in a lasting relationship?  Or someone who doesn’t have your best interest at heart.
  • Pray some more

Give me your thoughts.  I know the other readers would love to gain from your valuable insights.


3 thoughts on “From Couples to Combatants

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