As we strive to give you marriage insights every week that you can use, we realize that each insight can look simple to give. And yet they are difficult to do. It’s difficult to do that, which you know you should do. We get that. We live that. (The apostle Paul even stated that. We do what we don’t want to do and yet we don’t do what we know we should.)
Applying Marriage Insights
However, the same insights that we share with you, we challenge ourselves with to apply to our own marriage. In ministering we are ministered to, as well. May we never be “teachers” who give hollow words of advice and yet we do not live them ourselves! Please help us Lord Jesus!
We KNOW that our marriage is in a great place because we work to apply the marriage tips and advice that we, and others, give on the Marriage Missions web site. “Work” is the operative word because it does take work. We pray these marriage insights are helping you in your marriage.
Additionally, we encourage you to share your marriage insights on the web site. You have no idea how helpful this can be to us all! We all need each other.
With that said, we’re going to share with you 3 “simple” yet complex marriage insights. If you need the advice given, we hope you will apply it to your marriage. If you don’t need it, just say, “thank you Lord” and move on. Or you can share them with others who need the advice given.
So the following are remedies, reminders, and researched, marriage-test tips that we hope you will keep in mind.
The first tip insight we feel led to share with you is this:
“Your finest hour is not when everything is going well and you’re on easy street. Truly, your finest hour is when times are tough and you stick it out, fight for your marriage, function under pressure, and make it to the other side—triumphantly. If you’re going through a difficult time, remember that there is no better cause than the person you have sworn to love. There is no more valiant goal than to fulfill the vows you made to your spouse. Though it may feel like your worst disaster, it is when you begin to fight for that cause and that goal that you will experience your finest hour.” (Drs. Les & Leslie Parrott)
That’s so, so true! Many of us grab onto the mistaken idea that we need to escape hardships. We don’t think God created us to grit through the tough, tough marital stuff that many of us go through. (We’ve been in that state of disillusionment, the difficult times, and the desire to escape.) But it may be that God has a different plan for your life. We’re told in the Bible to “allow perseverance to finish its work.” It may just be that if you give up, you will miss many of the blessings God has in store for you to enjoy in the years to come. We’ve experienced that truth, and we know others who have, as well.
Or it may be that by persevering, God knows we will be all the stronger to better handle something in the future. We need to remember that we are shortsighted in seeing into the future.
Toughing it Out
When we “tough it out” that is when we enter into our “finest hour.” That’s when the “going gets tough” but we keep going, gritting through it, looking for solutions, so we get to a better place in our marriage relationship.
Now, we’re not talking about abuse issues here. We’re not talking about letting our spouse abuse us. We need to approach this type of situation in a tough yet much different way. (You can find insight into that type of fight on our web site. A good place to start is in the Abuse in Marriage topic. Or perhaps you need to look into the Emotional and Physical Affair topic, or the Surviving Infidelity topic.)
But sometimes our different approaches to life flare up and it appears to us that it would be impossible to bridge them in any way. That’s when we need to take the time to talk back and forth, LISTEN to each other—TRULY listen, and find a way to approach our differences so they don’t cripple us in our relationship. This is a tough task, no doubt. But it actually IS our finest hour.
And what’s “funny” is that often times, we can surprisingly get to the place where we can make our differences work FOR us, rather than against us. (We’re telling you this from personal experience.)
This leads us to the next marriage insight that is important to know:
“Not all problems are resolvable! I wish more marriage experts would just tell us that from the beginning. Some problems we face are perpetual. These are problems that will always be in our lives in one form or another. You will have issues in your relationship where the best you can do is agree to disagree. When that is the case, find a workable solution you can both live with. You do this every day at work with co-worker relationships, so make it happen with your spouse. Most of our marital problems are not troubles worth putting the relationship in jeopardy over.” (Jim Burns)
This insight is frustrating! It’s difficult to get to the place where we’re okay with agreeing to disagree. We want more than a “workable solution”; we want to come to a resolution. But in reality, this may be the only option we can grab onto to get to a place of resolution.
We all have quirks. We all have different vantage points in how we look at and approach situations. But whatever we do, we need to choose our battles. Sometimes it is best to let go of resolving the situation, and instead find a workable solution.
The Third of Three Marriage Insights
So, here is the third marriage tip we want to give you:
“Treat your spouse like they’re the most important person in the world. Because they are. No one else has pledged their life to you. No other person has committed to be with you through the ups and the downs, the good times and the bad, through wealth and poverty. And no person experiences your rawest emotions and greatest flaws more than your spouse. That alone has earned them a place above all other beings on earth.” (Fawn Weaver)
We hope you take this tip to heart. Remember your wedding vows. You do remember your wedding vows, right? Again… they’re easy to give or say, but difficult to apply in everyday living. This is when your character comes through. Are you a promise-keeper? Are you sure that you are applying the vows you gave, “to have and to hold, from this day forward, for better, for worse, for richer, for poorer, in sickness and in health, to love and to cherish, till death do us part, according to God’s holy ordinance; and thereto I pledge thee my faith [or] pledge myself to you.” Look at the promises YOU gave. Make sure you do what you promised. Please prayerfully consider what we are saying here.
Truly… we don’t want to guilt-trip you here. We just want to give you insight into some of the complex issues of marriage that you may not have considered previously. As we said before, if you don’t need the advice don’t take it. But if you do, please apply it. And share your insights with us, and others, as well.
May God richly bless your marriage as you lean into Him and make your marriage the best it can be!
Cindy and Steve Wright
— ADDITIONALLY —
We give a lot of personal stories, humor, and more practical tips in our book, 7 ESSENTIALS to Grow Your Marriage. We hope you will pick up a copy for yourself. (It’s available both electronically and in print form.) Plus, it can make a great gift for someone else. It gives you the opportunity to help them grow their marriage. And who doesn’t need that? Just click on the linked title or the picture below to do so:
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