“To everything there is a season.”
That’s what it says in the Bible in the book of Ecclesiastes. And that can be true of friendships as well as in other areas of life. Sometimes you have a best friend all while growing up but later in life you out-grow each other. Sometimes you have a special friend that helps you through a crisis, yet eventually you don’t see each other as much. But for that season of your life, they were a blessing. And sometimes you are able to keep your friendship alive throughout your life —an even greater blessing, if it works.
Friendships are different than marital partnerships. Marriage is a sacred vow you enter into with your partner and with God. It is a “cord of three strands” relationship that God takes seriously (and so should we) because it’s a living picture of Christ’s love for the church to a world that needs to see God’s faithfulness lived out before them.
And even though you can have great friendships going on like King David and Jonathan had (as shown in the Bible), sometimes the ongoing relationship needs to be ended if they become toxic —especially if they become toxic to your marriage. Some friends just aren’t good for the health of your marriage, or your very life. (more…)
Suggestion: Make a copy of these scriptures for your everyday use. Read one Bible passage a day, together with your spouse (if possible), for the next 142 days. After reading the passage of the day, if your spouse will participate with you, take the time to discuss what it means to each of you personally in light of your marriage, and/or pertaining to marriage in itself.
You can take a prayer/share walk together, or sit with each other enjoying cups of coffee or tea or soda or whatever, using the passage of the day as your springboard for time you spend in “couple time,” strengthening your marriage as a “chord of three strands.”
As you discuss these passages, you may find that you will not always think alike, in how you see these scriptures applying to your marriage, but the main goal is to “think together” —to find ways to build relationship bridges so you “walk together” through your marriage journey.
Sometimes deep discussion will ensue, sometimes confession may be appropriate, sometimes apologies, but always giving grace and building relationship bridges is important. Look to be dispensers of grace, rather than vessels of criticism. This is a relationship building time with you, your spouse and God together in partnership. (more…)
The comic shown here may look “funny” or odd to some couples —especially those who are engaged or newlywed, because there may always seem to be something to talk about together. And there is. But sadly, many couples lose the art of conversing with each other —talking AND listening to what each partner feels about different matters.
The dynamics of marriage often leads the way into settling us in together into a life of “familiarity”, which can tempt us to become lazy as far as investing our time in growing our friendship. Another aspect of marriage can stir us up with SO much busyness (especially if you have children), that it’s not unusual to find ourselves in a place where we “just” don’t talk together, as we should. Either way, we’re put into a place where there is a real “need to communicate more.” (more…)