Here’s something you may benefit from knowing. Just because you get “advice” from someone, it doesn’t mean it’s advice you should follow. It may sound good, but that doesn’t mean it IS good —at least not for you. We’ve seen and have learned the hard way that many people give marriage counsel that they really shouldn’t. Even WE give advice sometimes that may not work. That’s because well-meaning people, friends, relatives, marriage educators, counselors, and even “experts,” can sometimes give flawed advice. Lets face it, as human beings we are all flawed. That’s why gleaning advice is a good way to go.
God is the only counselor you can fully trust in the way He guides. He knows you better than anyone else ever could —even better than YOU sometimes. He is all knowing. In Psalm 139, the psalmist said:
“O Lord, you have searched me and you know me. You know when I sit and when I rise. You perceive my thoughts from afar. Also, you discern my going out and my lying down. You are familiar with all my ways. Before a word is on my tongue you know it completely, O Lord.“
God Knows Best
From what we’re told in scripture, you can rest assured that God, who made you, knows best how to guide you to Truth and understanding. As you follow His leading, He can help you build a marriage that is the best it can be.
Advice from any other sources can sometimes be good, but it needs to be prayerfully considered from every angle. It’s the principle of gleaning, as referred to in the Bible.
You can read in the Bible where harvesters used to gather the best of their crop and leave the scraps for others who were less fortunate to glean through and then use. But in the case of gathering counsel, you’d want to pick the best. Choose what BEST applies to your marriage, and leave the rest behind. The rest may work for others, but that doesn’t mean it’s good for you.
This doesn’t apply to the counsel you receive from scripture. That is because God’s word is filled with truth. As it says in 2 Timothy 3:16-17: “All Scripture is God-breathed and is useful for teaching, rebuking, correcting and training in righteousness, so that the man of God may be thoroughly equipped for every good work.” God’s word equipping us for “every good work,” includes building a good marriage. The principles for living, as outlined throughout the Bible, are also the principles for loving each other in the truest sense.
A few of these principles are:
• Make sure you’re faithful in every way to God and to each other. “Let love and faithfulness never leave you; bind them around your neck, write them on the tablet of your heart.” (Proverbs 3:3)
• Speak the truth in loving, respectful ways “as unto the Lord.” “Speaking the truth in love, we will grow to become in every respect the mature body of Him who is the head, that is, Christ.” (Ephesians 4:15)
• Be mutually submissive, with Christ as your example. “Submit to one another out of reverence for Christ.” (Ephesians 4:21) “Your attitude should be the same as that of Christ Jesus: who being in very nature God, did not consider equality with God something to be grasped, but made himself nothing, taking the very nature of a servant, being made in human likeness.” (Philippians 2:5-6)
• Whenever you can, inspire peace (especially with your spouse). “If it is possible, as far as it depends on you, live at peace with everyone.” (Romans 12:18)
• Allow the fruit of the Spirit to flow through you, which is: “love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control.” (See: Galatians 5:22-23.)
• Whenever you speak, make sure the way you say it isn’t as obnoxious and irritating as listening to a “clanging cymbal.” “If I speak in the tongues of men or of angels, but do not have love, I am only a resounding gong or a clanging cymbal.” (1 Corinthians 13:1)
• In the way you relate to each other, don’t be “rude, self-seeking, easily angered,” and remember, you are to “keep no records of wrongs.” (See: 1 Corinthians 13:5)
There are a lot more scriptures and guidance that can help you in marriage.
Here are some of them are:
• BIBLE VERSES THAT CAN BE USED IN A WEDDING
• SCRIPTURES TO BRING YOU CLOSE TOGETHER IN YOUR MARRIAGE
• SCRIPTURE VERSES ON COMMUNICATION
• MONEY AND MARRIAGE SCRIPTURES
• PRAY SCRIPTURES FOR YOUR MARRIAGE – MM #363
• MARRIAGE TIPS FROM PROVERBS – MM #360
• MARRIAGE CHECK-UP LIST – With Scriptures
• SCRIPTURES THAT DEAL WITH HAVING SEX BEFORE MARRIAGE
• BATTLING TEMPTATION WITH THE SWORD OF TRUTH
• SCRIPTURES ON ABUSE AND DOMESTIC VIOLENCE
• BIBLE VERSES ON BITTERNESS AND FORGIVENESS
• SCRIPTURES DEALING WITH SEEKING THE COUNSEL OF OTHERS
• APPLYING THE GLEANING PRINCIPLE TO HUMAN ADVISORS
With God’s principles as your foundation He can further help you build your marriage in a healthy way.
Follow Your “Wonderful Counselor”
We’re told in the Bible that God is our “Wonderful Counselor.” But there are many scriptures that tell us to also seek the advice of Godly advisors. One of them is found in Proverbs 20:18. It says, “Make plans by seeking advice. If you wage war, obtain guidance.” While we’re not advising that you wage war with each other, we hope you WILL wage war against that, which divides you as a married couple. Fight FOR your marriage rather than fighting oppositional with each other.
While fighting for your marriage, you might want to pray what the psalmist did. In Psalm 139 we’re told he prayed: “Search me, O God, and know my heart. Test me and know my anxious thoughts. See if there is any offensive way in me, and lead me in the way everlasting.” Ask God to show you anything that needs confessing and help you filter advice given in a self-serving way.
Make sure your hearts are unbiased, and your eyes are focused, looking for truth. And then keep your eyes open to what God brings your way. Look for that, which is consistent with God’s Word and will work for your marriage. God didn’t create us, as “cookie cutter” type of people. So the advice we obtain from human advisors should also consider our “uniqueness” as a couple.
Gleaning All Advice But God’s
We hope, when you’re seeking advice from those who can help you that you’ll prayerfully sift through it and use what applies for your lives together and discard the rest. Please don’t hesitate to seek counsel when you need it from those who are godly, who can help you. But also, make sure you draw close to God and listen to Him with your ears and heart attentive to apply the principle of gleaning when it comes to marriage advice from those who counsel you.
We hope this is helpful to your marriage in some way, either now or in the future. Please remember that we have a lot of articles, testimonies, quotes, links to other web sites, and recommended resources posted on our web site, for your use. We also make a Prayer Wall, daily Facebook and Twitter quotes available to help enrich marriages, as well.
And when you do your Amazon.com ordering through the window we provide on the Home Page of the Marriage Missions web site, part of the profit Amazon makes is sent to our ministry to help your marriage and others, as well. It is our continual prayer to always make pro-active marriage resources available to help those who need it. Thanks for your part in making this possible.
May God bless you in your marriage journey with each other and God,
Cindy and Steve Wright
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2 responses to “Gleaning Marriage Advice – MM #252”
(USA) This is the best article ever. It is so true and the truth about advice on this site is so very much appreciated.
“Not all marital advice is helpful for your marriage — even the advice WE give may not apply directly to your particular circumstances. Yep, you read it right! We acknowledge that we (and other marriage educators and counselors) can sometimes give flawed advice. That’s because as humans we are all flawed.”
The Holy Spirit guided this article. Thank you for listening and posting this. It is a very good warning to the hurting heart.
(Africa) I just want to let you know that God is using you greatly in our marriage. I may not be able to give a substantial testimony yet, but I can tell that change has come our way. I pray that God continues to use you to enrich, empower, and heal many marriages. With much appreciation!