Marriage has many obstacles as well as blessings. In my series I have been blogging, "Till Death Do Us Part" I have touched on many different topics. The message on forgiveness talks about our need to be In Christ so we are able to forgive each other as Christ forgives us. The message on love in part 5 reminds us to have a tenacious love for our spouse. The kind of love that never gives up. There are more messages to come in this series, (Trust, Enduring Hardship, and Submission) but for today I am beginning a new set of blog messages. Simply titled, "The Marriage Wreckers..."
To begin I am using the verses from 1Cor 13 but I am putting a little twist on it. Rather than discussing the verse and what it might mean to you and me, I am taking the opposite of the verse and showing how when we do just the opposite of God's Word it wrecks our lives.
Let me give you an example... Here in verse 4 we see that Love is patient. (1Cor 13:4 Love is patient...) So let's begin with the first Marriage Wrecker:
Paul addresses the fruits of the spirit we as believers ought to possess in the book of Galatians. Gal 5:22-23 But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, self-control; against such things there is no law. As you may have noticed, one of those characteristics of one who walks in the Spirit is patience. He addresses the Ephesians in Eph 4:2 to live your life with patience, bearing with one another in love.
If patience is such a key attribute in our walk amongst other believers, shouldn't it be even more of a fruit that comes from our lives towards our spouse? Then they can enjoy the bounty of the harvest of our love towards them. We can be so patient with people we hardly know but turn like a viper on the ones most dear to us. Impatience and irritability is a major Marriage Wrecker. With all the things we have coming against marriages today, we as Christians ought to take a serious look at our level of patience with our spouse, our children, and those around us. Ask yourself one question today... "Am I upset or irritable about circumstances or people much of the time?" If you answered yes then you struggle with the sin of impatience. It is that cut and dry. If you struggle with it then it is bad fruit and needs to be plucked out of your orchard. Not only is it a marriage wrecker but it can be a life wrecker as well.
So, how do we deal with the sin of impatience and work toward being more Christ like in our marriages? It starts first and foremost with repentance and forgiveness. Confess your sin of impatience to God and turn from it. Ask those you have offended by being impatient and irritable to forgive you and start fresh. Trust is a difficult thing to rebuild if the levels of impatience have led to any form of abuse, but God is gracious and can restore even the most difficult situation.
Patience is the first fruit of love described in 1Cor 13:4. Paul put it there for a reason. He was inspired by God to write this letter and we are fortunate enough to have it available to us so we can learn from him and live our lives in harmony with God and our spouse. Is impatience one of your marriage wreckers? If so I encourage you to look into the Word of God and read what He has to say about it. I also encourage you to find a close friend who you can confide in and share your struggle with impatience and have this person regularly pray with you regarding this difficult marriage wrecker.
God wants happy marriages. When you got married you wanted a happy marriage. The first start to getting there is to turn your impatience and irritability into a loving patience that accepts your spouse for all of his or her differences.
And now to the men, I believe this starts with you. Eph 5:25 Husbands, love your wives, as Christ loved the church and gave himself up for her,
We are called to lay down our life for our wives. That doesn't only mean take a bullet for her in a hostile situation, it means that in all areas of our life we are going to be willing to die for her. Die to our own agenda and selfish desire. We are to protect them, support them, encourage them, and love them just as Christ does for His bride, the church. How can we do that if we are constantly irritable and impatient?
And ladies, well, I can't speak to you so much since I am a man. However I know what the needs of a man are and if you are in tune to your husband, he is learning to love you as Christ loves the church, and you are obedient to the scriptures, then how can you truly love and submit when you are impatient and irritable?
1Cor 13:4 Love is patient... It means "long suffering" One translation defines it as (to show one's self mild, to be kind, use kindness) It isn't a suggestion, a good idea, or something thought up to make life more fun. It is God's Word. I hope that each of us can remember that impatience is a Marriage Wrecker and patience is a Marriage Restorer.
May you all walk in Christ today and experience the blessing in your marriage that He intended for you from the beginning.
Here are a few verses to meditate on that may help you in your walk toward being a more patient person... and more patient with your spouse. It is about becoming like Christ, not simply trying harder!
- Eph 4:2 with all humility and gentleness, with patience, bearing with one another in love,
- Gal 5:22 But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness,
- Col 3:12 Put on then, as God's chosen ones, holy and beloved, compassionate hearts, kindness, humility, meekness, and patience,
- Rom 2:7 to those who by patience in well-doing seek for glory and honor and immortality, he will give eternal life;
- 1Cor 13:4 Love is patient and kind; love does not envy or boast; it is not arrogant
- 1Thess 5:14 And we urge you, brothers, admonish the idle, encourage the fainthearted, help the weak, be patient with them all.
- 2Tim 2:24 And the Lord's servant must not be quarrelsome but kind to everyone, able to teach, patiently enduring evil,
- Ps 40:1 I waited patiently for the Lord; he inclined to me and heard my cry.
1Pet 3:7 Likewise, husbands, live with your wives in an understanding way, showing honor to the woman as the weaker vessel, since they are heirs with you of the grace of life, so that your prayers may not be hindered.