You feel like you have a broken marriage.
Relational distance, finding yourselves on different pages, petty arguments, misunderstandings.
You sense a crack somewhere or a disconnect that seems to be widening.
You wonder if you are doing something to create the “broken marriage” feeling and you want help before it gets worse.
Feeling like something is broken in your marriage doesn’t mean you are done. But, it is a sign to warn you and encourage to do something about that feeling.
I remember seeing Jeremy from across our college chapel.
He was so stinkin’ cute. and a senior.
Tall, dark and handsome… my very own Tom Cruise look-alike.
I was smitten.
Now, nearly 17 years later…
He is still pretty adorable. Still tall and dark and handsome.
But we have history.
We have a life. A very, full life.
Kids, jobs, ministries, hobbies, friends, families… so much more than what we had at first glance.
It is hard to remember that first lovey feeling in the midst of life’s busy, craziness.
We know the good, the bad and the ugly.
We’ve seen each other at their worst. We see their selfishness and their insensitivity. We know that they’ve seen it in us as well.
We know things and feel things and understand so many more things.
We love deeper, stronger and healthier.
We cling to each other because life really is just that amazing and that hard.
And even with all of that…
Marriages still fail.
People fall apart.
And, well… while I sure don’t plan on that happening since we are both in this for forever…
There are some negative patterns that we have got to stay away from, true marriage breakers… things that Satan can and will use to separate even the strongest among us.
We must stand protective over our marriages.
Keeping our mouths, our hearts, and our lives in sync.
To do that here are a list of things that we must stay away from in marriage.
Phrases, Sayings, Actions that have no place in marriage.
Things that will ultimately divide you and your spouse.
1. “You always…” This is huge. Making big dramatic proclamations will hurt your spouse.
2. “You never…” Strive to speak with truth. Do they really NEVER? Or is that exaggeration at the expense of your spouse?
3. The Silent Treatment. Jeremy gave me this as his 1 Thing You Should Never Do in Marriage
4. The Blame Game. Blaming assumes the worst about your spouse instead of believing and trusting for the best.
5. Keeping a list of wrongs. We know this isn’t love from 1 Corinthians 13. My friend Jenifer wrote about this as not being an Elephant who remembers everything!
6. Name Calling. This is a horrid trap for marriage. Being mad does not give you the right to spout off mean names at your spouse. Self-control is a must.
7. “I don’t care…” You can say this with your words or with your actions. And your actions can say it without you even knowing it. What shows your spouse that you care? Do that.
8. “You are just like…” Let’s just all say, “Ouch!” Do not tell your spouse they are acting just like a parent or a friend or whoever. That can be so hurtful. And, it is something your spouse will remember.
9. Comparison. Does your friend seem to have the absolute perfect husband? Don’t compare your spouse even in your mind, let alone your words. This can cause a huge rift in a friendship and in your marriage. It also opens a door to infidelity in ways that is very hard to shut.
10. Gossip. This was my 1 Thing Never to do in Marriage. Never bad-mouth your spouse to others. Never.
Letting any of these things flourish between you and your spouse will for sure diminish that “first love” feeling that is already so hard to keep in focus.
Also, letting any of these things flourish will plant seeds of distrust, insecurity, hurt and bitterness in your marriage. Those are ALL things that Satan can use to destroy your marriage.
He wants to destroy your marriage.
Don’t willingly give him the necessary tools to help make that happen. Your marriage is fragile. Protect it. Fight for it. Retrain your actions because of it. Put a guard over your mouth and watch every word that escapes. Stay passionately devoted to loving like you should.
If you don’t, these marriage breakers can easily win.
What is something that you could add to this list?