Wednesday, April 12, 2006

Some Thoughts on Marriage

I'm hesitant to glibly say, "the Lord gave me this," but I believe in the case of the "three P's, He did. I woke up with it. I think it's worth reproducing here:

Problems in marriages come in from man and wife. What we do (or fail to do) as husbands are not the only problems in the marriage. However, God has given us the leadership position that can bring the solution.

As a husband, you can’t change your wife. You can only change yourself. But, if you lead in a Godly way, she will follow.

These are the three "P's" that were in my heart when I awoke.

* Protect – we all bring in negatives and positives from our original family. We must protect our wives from the negatives, and encourage with the positives. Society and work is full of negatives that we must protect our wives (and families) from. We must also protect our wives and children from emotional withdrawal.
* Praise – praise your wife 50 times as much as you criticize. Whenever criticism is necessary, pray about what to say and when to say it. Never criticize in front of the children.
* Prayer – pray with her daily. Ask the Lord to bless her. Even if your prayer is only 30 seconds long, God hears you and so does she.

Read Ephesians 5:25

* We are to love our wives as Christ loved the church and gave himself up for her
* Christ loved the Church enough to die for Her – like Christ we must die to our own selves for the sake of our wives and our families
* We are to love our wives as ourselves – feeding and caring for her, both physically and emotionally.

If we could look at an account of our verbal transactions with our wives, the amounts might look like this:

* Add 100 credits for every we time praise
* Take away 5,000 credits for every criticism not done prayerfully
* Take away 10,000 credits for every word spoken in a hurtful way

As men, we are built for work. God made us that way. We train, we study, and we apply ourselves to our work. The most important work of our lives, however, goes on within the walls of our homes. When we build up our wives and our children, we are working to give them a secure future, and we are working for our own future happiness. The self image of our wives and of our children will depend in no small measure on how successful we are in this most important of all the work of our lives.

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