I read widely on marriage and lately I’ve been coming across very interesting pieces of advice.
Interesting in the sense that it’s great workable advice for other people maybe, but not so great for me and my marriage right now.
Not too long ago similar articles would left me panicked; scoring high on the distraught scale.
Being the growth and success enthusiast that I am, I’d have jumped on my young marriage, pricking and probing looking for ways to make it better (as per what I’d read) convinced that unless I acted now, we’d suffer tonnes later.
Now while most people would laugh at my misplaced ‘enthusiasm’ (more like fear really), I’ve come to learn that unfiltered marriage advice will make a character out of anyone of us.
Finding what works for your marriage.
Three weeks ago I wrote about finding what works for your marriage (and sticking with it)
I shared how in pursuit of growth and happiness, many of us end up holding our marriages to unrealistic standards.
I am currently living in a new culture and on most days I am confronted by huge cultural differences.
I’ve found that if I am not careful I can get stuck on analysis mode.
Over-thinking and toiling over things that have no real bearing (or benefit) to my marriage.
Things that would most probably never work for us because we are different.
To stay sane, I am once again learning how be comfortable and happy in my own marriage skin.
What are you wrestling with?
You might not be wrestling with cultural differences and issues.
But you might be wrestling with identity issues.
Because that is what it comes down to really.
Knowing who you are as a couple, being comfortable in your own marriage skin, knowing God’s purpose for you as a couple.
Author and Pastor Mark Gungor says that to have thriving relationship, couples need to find out what is right with their spouse (and give it to them).
Not what is wrong.
Unfortunately most of us expend some our greatest marital energy trying to fix our spouses, trying to help them overcome their weaknesses.
We completely miss the fact that bliss finds us when we focus on our spouse’s strength (what is right with them, how God wired them).
Now in the same way, when we focus and revel in what is right with us as a couple, we thrive.
But when we try go fishing for “what is wrong with you” (and well-intended) ideas, we wither.
How do you know what is right with you to begin with?
You ask your Creator.
Or blogs (ahem).
Not even mentors.
These other sources ought to confirm or encourage you towards something you already know.
Not until you find out who you are in God as a couple will you know what works for you.
If you don’t know what works for you, you will be like a dust particle in the Kalahari desert, tossed to and fro, dragged around by the winds of comparison.
No other person knows what is going on your life and marriage.
He has a plan for your life and your marriage.
When you spend time seeking Him and His plan, you will be anchored and will be better protected from the storms of comparison, envy and jealousy.
Question – What are your thought on comparison in marriage? Can understanding our identity in Christ anchor us against comparison and unhealthy competition? Please share your thoughts in Comments
(Please note – I am a big mentoring and teaching enthusiast – that’s why I write this blog! However I believe it’s important to establish our foundations first.)
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