Conflict in marriage. What couple doesn’t have it?
One wife wrote to me asking about conflict in my marriage. Here’s her question…
Dear Jolene, I was wondering if you and your husband could address how you have gotten through times when you did not necessarily agree or feel united together. While I admire your strong marriage, I wonder if you could share times when you and your husband were struggling in your relationship and how you overcame those challenges.
So, has there ever been a time in my marriage that I was at odds with my man?
When we couldn’t see eye to eye?
When we weren’t on the same page?
When he made me fuming mad?
When he brought this sweet thing to tears? (lol)
Take two, imperfect, human beings that are filled with sin, put them under the same roof and guess what you get? CONFLICT, with a capital “C”!
But who enjoys having a marriage like that? Certainly not me! (This is the perspective I try to keep when the winds of conflict blow my way.)
So, let me give you some biblical principles that my Beloved and I have applied to our marriage so we can:
A. Decrease the amount of conflict in our relationship
B. Reach a resolution much quicker so we can remain in unity,
C. And keep my tears to a minimum! 🙂
Conflict WILL take place in your marriage- expect it! But this list should help you be prepared to handle it in a way that is pleasing to the Lord.
I’ve called this list A Marital Manifesto for When You Are at Odds with Your Man.
It’s not an exhaustive list, but rather a starting place.
1. Create and cultivate emotional trust in your marriage.
When the disagreements come, it’s easy to feel like you’ve married the wrong guy. Every marriage has disagreements because we’re two separate individuals. But nothing good can come from emotionally threatening your spouse with the word, ‘divorce’*. Make an agreement to not even bring up that word in your marriage no matter how bad the argument or situation is (assuming there is no abuse or infidelity.)
“So then, they are no longer two but one flesh. Therefore what God has joined together, let not man separate.” Matthew 19:6
2. Don’t let the sun go down on your wrath.
Even if the two of you disagree on an issue or there has been miscommunication in your conversation, (much like there has been in mine), make the decision to have your hearts re-connect before you put your head on the pillow that night.
It’s okay to ‘table’ the issue and address it in the morning. Just make sure there is no anger in your heart toward one another. By going to bed angry, you are giving place to the enemy to sow seeds of discord in your heart. And let’s not forget the notion of lying in bed while being at odds with your man. You’ll have the tendency to dig up other issues in your mind while you stew over the argument, just like I’ve done! This is not a good place for your heart and mind to be.
“Be angry, and do not sin”: do not let the sun go down on your wrath, nor give place to the devil. Ephesians 4:26,27
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Live a poured out life for Christ,