In marriage, there comes a point that if you don’t change your world, your world will change you. Maybe in ways you don’t want it to. I know this from experience, my own, that of many friends, as well as those I’ve interviewed. One thing’s for sure, a marriage doesn’t automatically improve and get better on its own.
Marriage issues often sneak up on us — and it’s no wonder. We’re so busy trying to get through each day, we can miss the signs. Attempts at avoidance fill our time: screaming children, late appointments, empty refrigerators, broken appliances, messed up vehicles, and looming bills are common distractions smothering our souls with anxiety. Is it any wonder we want to escape and play with our friends? Who has time or mindset for romance, emotional intimacy, or quality time?
But if you aren’t intentional every week — no matter how long you’ve been married, disaster can hit. Don’t ever delude yourself into thinking you’ve moved past that stage in your relationship. Even if you don’t end up in a divorce situation, I know too many miserable married couples, because they let things fall apart. But before I get into marriage-saving details, let me say this. I am NOT laying all blame on the shoulders of the reader. In my experience, it takes three to make a marriage work.
My husband and I were just talking about this yesterday on our way to church. If we hadn’t both cried out to Jesus for help. If we hadn’t listened closely for the truth. If each of us hadn’t done what God told us, including what felt like a lot of uncomfortable, unfair, unwanted directives, we wouldn’t be married today.
Our children and grandchildren would be torn between the two of us. Holidays would be even more harried and chaotic. Our finances would be a wreck. And we would spend the rest of our lives hiding fragments of our histories, pieces of who we are, in our efforts to avoid new conflicts. By ourselves, neither one of us could have worked hard enough to make our marriage work, and especially to make it work as well as it does today.
I would add, “If both spouses aren’t paddling in tandem to the Voice of the Navigator, eventually, you’ll hit debris, your canoe will wobble, and you will topple over.” Only God can see what lies around the bend. We need His guidance to move us safely past marital obstacles.
Can our marriage be saved? A lot of people are asking themselves that question right now. I believe it can. If both parties are willing to plunge their oars into the water, and listen to direction. To take small daily strokes toward your desired destination. It’s harder at first, but with practice a great marriage gets smoother, easier — and a lot more fun.
These days, my husband and I rarely fuss or fight. Our relationship isn’t a show or a sham, it’s the real deal — not perfect, but really, really amazing. We’ve learned a lot of things over thirty-two years, and I’ll share some of our fun tips, practical ideas, spiritual insights, and several secrets starting in the next post. Until then, I encourage anyone reading this, do not allow stubborn pride to keep you from putting your paddle in the water. If your marriage is going in circles, ask yourself this question. “Am I the one holding back?”
Anita Fresh Faith
Matthew 19:4-6 (NIV)
“Haven’t you read,” he replied, “that at the beginning the Creator ‘made them male and female,’ and said, ‘For this reason a man will leave his father and mother and be united to his wife, and the two will become one flesh’? So they are no longer two, but one flesh. Therefore what God has joined together, let no one separate.”
Anita Brooks motivates others to dynamic break-throughs. Blending mind, heart, and spirit, as an Inspirational Business/Life Coach, International Speaker, and award-winning Author. Her latest book, released through Barbour Publishing, is Getting Through What You Can’t Get Over.
Anita is also author of First Hired, Last Fired — How to Become Irreplaceable in Any Job Market, released by Leafwood Publishing, Death Defied-Life Defined: A Miracle Man’s Memoir, and contributor to The Change Book Series. Her titles are available at all major bookstores, Amazon, plus other online retailers.
She is also host of the Fresh Faith Inspirations podcast. In all she does, Anita fulfills her mission to help 21st century women and men make fresh starts with fresh faith by sharing what she’s learned through experience, interviews, and research.
She’s energized by overcoming adversity, work with integrity, healthy relationships, identity issues, and abundant living. Anita inspires audiences all over the world to believe as she does — in business, as in life and love, it’s never too late!
Anita’s favorite pastime is watching sunsets with her husband of 30 years, while they laugh and dip their toes in the water. Her favorite passion is inspiring others to take life’s battles, and transform them into victories.
You can connect with Anita on Facebook, YouTube, Pinterest, LinkedIn, or Twitter. Keep up with Anita’s latest happenings at anitabrooks.com. Email firstname.lastname@example.org to request information on having Anita speak or train at your next event.