The Number One Problem in Marriage

What have you probably heard is the number one problem in marriage?

Often cited as the number one problem is the lack of communication.

I don’t believe that’s the case. It’s a problem, but not the main problem. The lack of communication is purely a symptom of a deeper problem.

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A Testament of Endurance: Celebrating Another Marriage Anniversary

It’s hard to believe…another year of marriage. My wife and I celebrated our 14th marriage anniversary this month. Time has certainly flown by.

We were blessed with a gift card to Ruth’s Chris Steakhouse, so we were able to have a wonderful anniversary dinner out. My mouth is watering just thinking about it, so I’m going to stop now.

The road to year 14 hasn’t always been easy. We’ve had to endure some hard times and even thoughts of divorce.

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Anger Management in Marriage 3: Biblically Dealing with Anger

Last time we talked about how people typically deal with anger towards their husband or wife.

So now what are some Biblical ways to deal with anger in marriage? Here are some brief ways to begin.

Get rid of all bitterness, rage and anger, brawling and slander, along with every form of malice. Be kind and compassionate to one another, forgiving each other, just as in Christ God forgave you.
Ephesians 4:31-32 (NIV)

1) Admit to yourself and God that you are angry. There’s no reason for denying it. Plus, as you get it out in the open, you’ll be better prepared to deal with it.

2) Don’t yield to your feelings. If you think you may say or do something that you’ll regret, walk away from the situation until you have control over your emotions. Take a deep breath to bring your physical reactions to anger under control. Realize that YOU are totally responsible for your own actions.

3) Whether the wrong committed against you was real or perceived, intentional or accidental, bring the offense to God and forgive your spouse. Forgiveness is not for the other person, it’s for you. As you get in the habit of actually forgiving your spouse, your anger will lead you into sin less often.

4) Don’t give the devil a foothold by dwelling on the offense. If you’ve forgiven your husband or wife, quit replaying the situation over in your mind. Otherwise, not only will you cause those angry feelings to come back, but you will give the devil the opportunity to add fuel to the fire by telling you how evil your spouse is. This will only serve to send you back to square one, negating any progress you’ve made.

“In your anger do not sin”: Do not let the sun go down while you are still angry, and do not give the devil a foothold.
Ephesians 4:26-27 (NIV)

Now you have some information to recognize how you may be unhealthily dealing with your anger and some recommendations to begin to deal with your anger in a healthy way.

If you’ve let your anger lead you into sin in the past, ask God to forgive you and let it go. You can’t control what you’ve done in the past, but you can control what you do now and in the future. Start preparing now for the next time you get angry, because the time will come again when you’ll need to deal with it. Ask the Holy Spirit to help you control yourself and diffuse the anger without sinning.

And remember Luke 1:37 “For nothing is impossible with God.”

The three posts in the Anger Management in Marriage series are:

  1. Introduction
  2. Poor Ways of Dealing with Anger
  3. Biblically Dealing with Anger

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Anger Management in Marriage 2: Poor Ways of Dealing with Anger

In the first post, I talked about how everyone eventually gets angry at their spouse, whether it’s over something large or small.

This time we’ll talk about how people typically deal with their anger.

First off, know that the anger itself is not a sin…it’s what you do with it and how you respond to it that can potentially be classified as sin.

I’m not going to over-complicate this post. Generally, there are two ways that people deal with anger.

Many people internalize their feelings of anger. They pretend that nothing is wrong, while pushing any anger that comes back inside. But in trying to avoid dealing with it, unforgiveness and bitterness take root, gradually poisoning their marriage. Turning it inward doesn’t deal with the anger; instead it’s allowed to build up over time. Eventually it results in a blowup or in slowly killing the relationship.

Others externalize it. They turn their anger outward, towards their spouse, kids, or anyone else who gets in their line of fire. They let their feelings lead them to hurt others, either verbally or physically. Many of these people profess that they just “couldn’t control themselves.” This is a person that’s controlled by their emotions, instead of being in control of their emotions. These people will continue to physically or verbally abuse their spouses or kids as long as they can get away with it.

Now, take that same “out of control” person and put them up next to a 300 pound linebacker. Do you think they would control themselves enough to keep from slapping that linebacker around? Oh yeah, because they know they couldn’t get away with that…not without some pretty hefty consequences.

We should never let our feelings of anger cause us to get “out of control.”

Do you fall into one of these categories? Do you internalize or externalize your anger?

Next time I’ll give you some recommendations on Biblically dealing with your anger in your marriage.

The three posts in the Anger Management in Marriage series are:

  1. Introduction
  2. Poor Ways of Dealing with Anger
  3. Biblically Dealing with Anger

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Happy New Year!

I’d like to take this opportunity to wish you a Happy New Year.

This past year was a weird one for my family. Not only did I get laid off from my job early in the year, but everything in my house seemed to hit a simultaneous expiration date for working properly. My wife is washing dishes by hand as I type because our dishwasher conked out right after Thanksgiving. It’s not that big of a deal, except that it’s just part of a long list of things breaking throughout the year.

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The In-Laws Are Coming, The In-Laws Are Coming! Dealing With Family Visits

My in-laws are coming from Ohio to stay with us in a few days. How do you think I feel about that?

If you’re like many people, you may think that I’m dreading it. Well, I’m one of those rare people that actually like my wife’s parents. I’m glad they’re able to visit and wish that we had the opportunity to see them more often.

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Foot to da flo’

Okay, so I talk a little funny sometimes. I’m originally from south Louisiana:)

It’s “Foot to the floor”, you know…on the accelerator in your car.

Anyhow, that’s what I’ve had to do this year. Stomp down on the gas of faith and blow right through the barriers.

Since making the decision to follow God and pursue the path of writing and selling a Christian marriage ebook, the devil has tried running me off the road at every opportunity. Much of the time I’ve just kinda laughed and handed it over to God, but I got really fed up the other day. For pretty much a whole day, I had to do as David did in 1 Samuel 30:6 and strengthen myself in the Lord.

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Don’t Be A Scaredycat – Part 2

Last time I talked about how my sons overcame their fear in the water. And since then they have progressed even further:)

For about a year now, I’ve been talking to them about fear…or rather freedom from it. The main source I pulled my information from are two Biblical verses that have helped me in my life. They are:

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Don’t Be A Scaredycat – Part 1

When his head went underwater I was…amazed.

Last week my kids learned to swim. Previously we’d never really taken the time to go to our community pool that often, so our boys weren’t very fond of the water. Since I got laid off from my job in February, I’ve been home to be able to do things like go to the pool with them.

A few years ago our oldest son Chase had learned to go underwater, so he could get baptized. But he never learned to actually swim.

Our youngest son Spencer had never even put his face into the water. He’d always been afraid; even with goggles on.

Well, last week things changed for both of them. As I look back, I realize it wasn’t an instantaneous change though.

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A Bad Example

I would like to share a quick lesson I learned last Sunday night as the Mavs lost and went down 3 games to 2. I was getting a little frustrated during the game, nothing huge, but I did bang my hand down on the couch a couple of times. Also, as Dwyane Wade for the Heat kept making shot after shot, I said “arg, I hate that guy.” Not good.

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