5 Jun


Nehemiah 4:2

The storms of life are coming, and believe us, they will affect you and your mate differently.  So how can you turn toward one another instead of away from each other?  There are many ways to do this:

First, recognize that suffering will come.  James 1:2 says, “Count it all joy when you fall into various trials.”  The passage doesn’t say if you encounter them.  Anticipate possible challenges and freely share your feelings about suffering.  If you have a plan and know biblically how to view adversity, then it won’t cause you to go to war with one another.  Indeed, you can turn troubles and trials into something purposeful, meaningful, and an opportunity for growth.

Second, give your mate the freedom to process what’s going on in his life.  Don’t expect him or her to flip a switch and just deal with the problem and move on.  It’s not usually that easy.  If your mate’s suffering doesn’t diminish after a reasonable time, resist the temptation to make such statements as, “Snap out of it and trust God!” or, “Quit acting like a big baby!” or, “We’ve spent enough time talking about this.  I think it’s time we just put the whole matter to rest.”  We become like Christ only by going through a lifelong process.  Trials and tragedies should force us to turn to God, but one person may take longer than another to come to that point.

Third, find out what your mate needs.  Often it is best simply to say, “I want to meet your needs and be the best possible partner I can be, but at times I don’t know how.  Would you tell me how you want me to love and encourage you in this situation?”  Talk about your feelings and give your spouse the freedom to feel whatever.

Fourth, build your marital foundation on Christ.  Jesus said, “Therefore whoever hears these sayings of Mine, and does them, I will liken him to a wise man who built his house on the rock: and the rain descended, the floods came, and the winds blew and beat on that house; and it did not fall, for it was founded on the rock” (Matt.7:24-25).  When you build your home on Christ, you place it on the only foundation that can withstand trouble, trials, and tribulation.

NOTE:  Daily there is a new post to help your marriage succeed.

NOTE:  This article came from the book Family Life and Marriage Bible by Dennis and Barbara Rainey.

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