Forgiveness in Marriage PIII

Forgiveness in Marriage

At this the servant fell on his knees before him. ‘Be patient with me,’ he begged, ‘and I will pay back everything.’  The servant’s master took pity on him, canceled the debt and let him go.” Matthew 18:26-27

This passage in Matthew, chapter eighteen, is a story of a forgiving king and a wicked servant. The king forgave this servant’s enormous debt, which is a parallel to our enormous debt of sin that we held until Christ forgave us. And this can also apply to the storehouse of hurts, wrongs, misses and the such, we may hold and horde and then harbor ourselves to, that we feel our spouse has done to us. This servant represents the believer, who, after experiencing the forgiveness of God, did harbor bitterness to another, and then refused to forgive his fellow Christian (or a non-Christian) for a much, much smaller debt.  The king became furious, and handed the servant over to be tortured.

What does this have to do with marriage? Everything! A stern warning not to harbor wrongs or they will consume us and hurt yourself, our spouse, our family and leave us in a dysfunctional and bitter life.

The Bible is telling us that if we refuse to forgive one another, and continue to harbor bitterness, we can be tortured, too. What is a greater destroyer or a better torture to have than being bitter and wallow in it so we are inept to be and do anything of worth?

My personal experience is when I have refused to forgive people in the past or my spouse, I have become consumed with feelings of guilt and shame, and this is a torture I can do without. I feel much better, and sleep much better with an attitude of forgiveness; I cannot think well or sleep well with an attitude of bitterness. I can grow in my relationship with Christ, build my family or enjoy my life with unforgiveness left out and about.

Why would a Christian marriage want to go through life with feelings of bitterness, which consume us with misery and unrest, instead of giving it to the Lord, and receiving forgiveness and rest?

How can we go through our marriage life and experience, and rationalize our bad actions and deeds, only to face our Lord later in the judgment? By what point are we to do, by what feeling is we to base, by what hope do we have? Even when we are in the right? When we have the knowledge of God’s mercy, then we have the responsibility of acting with mercy toward our wife, husband and one another (2 Corinthians 5:21).

God calls Christians to operate in the parameters of forgiveness, love, and mercy.  And, when we have not forgiven, we will have a heart filled with suffering and torment.  How can we receive Christ’s forgiveness, and claim Christ as our Savior, when we are unable to forgive one another?  When we have a forgiving attitude, then we will have a heart at rest and in peace!

Let us take our marriage vision from God’s Word and heed from Matthew, chapter 18. We can see what God requires of us, and our appropriate response.  We,  must extend ourselves to one another with love, and that which flows out of love-forgiveness!  Which is a key component to make a marriage last a lifetime and build a legacy for generations.

            Ephesians 4:29-32 tells us, “Do not let any unwholesome talk come out of your mouths, but only what is helpful for building others up according to their needs, that it may benefit those who listen.  And do not grieve the Holy Spirit of God, with whom you were sealed for the day of redemption. 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.”   

John 13:34-35 tells us, “A new command I give you: Love one another. As I have loved you, so you must love one another.  By this all men will know that you are my disciples, if you love one another”. 

            We are to love and forgive one another-period!  No strings attached! Unless there is abuse or abandonment. This is the model we are to use to show God’s love to the world!  

We should be clear on this.  A healthy marriage is one who puts aside the malicious traits of an evil, sin nature, and embraces each other with love and respect, and what flows out of that is forgiveness. What comes out of love is the release of our feelings of betrayal and hurt.

We are called to model kindness, love, empathy, compassion-and, out of these, will flow a forgiveness for a content home. Yes, this is hard, but the result of not forgiving, even when we are in the right, is a torture no child of God should endure. God wants us to get with it, to wake up, and seize the wonders and opportunities He gives us. Because, an unforgiving attitude, and its ugly rotten fruits, will chock us off from His wonders!

Our Faith Is the most important item we offer in Marriage

Wondrous Marriage aThis title statement is “a must” to know and yield to, before you can venture into the arena of “authentic relationships.” You have to know whom you are and what you are in order to do what you are called to do.

In other words, in a Christian marriage, you are saved by faith because of the Wonder about what Christ has done, then, you are able to communicate that to your spouse, and then to others around you. All that we are, and have to offer, is what Christ is doing in our lives and together in our marriage that is shown by our faith. It is faith that will build our relationship with Christ, our relationship with our spouse and our relationships in our church. And this will be the catalyst of ‘Wonder’ to attract others to our church too.  Faith is the prototypical aspect of growing a person, a marriage and a church God’s way.

Our Lord seeks us to be His “change agents,” the presenters of the wonder of His message, His Gospel.

The Christian family and each family collectively as the church are the front lines that wage not just the battle, but also the marketing of Wonder of the message. How we engage in our relationship to Christ and then impart that to each other will be the biggest testimony to the message of true faith. This is where the Message of the Gospel the road of life. The Christian marriage is the display case that presents the marvelous Wonder of Christ’s love through faith. If the display case is dirty, the Wonder is hard to see. If the case is broken, or if there are other things occupying the Wonder’s space, the Wonder becomes cloaked and the viewer’s perspective becomes skewed.

The real authenticity of our Lord, will enable us to build a real authenticity of love and respect, which will in turn build a “Wondrous Marriage!”

The message we display is the byproduct of our inner journey of faith converging with our spouse’s inner journey of faith. Then we show others the eternal truths of our Lord, the reality of life, and the purpose of existence. The Wonder is Christ Himself desires to live and work in our personal lives, our family lives and then in church and the world! The Wonder is the Christ who suffered mercilessly, who went through false accusations, sufferings and rejection, not because He was forced to, but because He chose to on our behalf.

How do your friends and family the people of the church, and the neighborhood, see your marriage display case? Not that we will be perfect, or even get it right, but we are on that journey together. How are you displaying the Wonder of His message? How does God see His Wonder in you? Is there stagnation in your display case, is it filthy, where junk, such as pride and disloyalty, sit in the place of the Wonder, and where the people cannot see the message, so the message does not go out? On the other hand, is the display case clean and neat, a display that love, lifts up, honors, respects and cherishes His most precious Wonder? The message must be lit with vibrant and growing awe because of who He is.

The Wonder of a Christian marriage is it’s a living message that must be displayed and used in living and be vibrant.

It sees Christ as who He is, and then responds with gratitude and passion.  When it breaks, we can fix it, but if it stays broke, the display case becomes something else to those around us, a testimony of faithlessness and pride, brokenness and dysfunction.

Let us not be broken, rather, be loving and respectful as we do our best to be His Wonder to one another and then to those around us.

Money and Marriage

Money and marriageMoney and marriage go together like ice-cream and a cone or a car and gasoline or more like this–problems and fighting.  

Because financial issues can be so destructive in relationships, you need to know how to make sure both of you know what money is and how money works. How do we do this? Know that money is a tool, not the focus.  It is important to have a good, biblical concept of how to deal with budgeting and debt.  Know what comes in, know what goes out, and make sure the ‘in’ is more than the ‘out’.  Communicate without judgments and strings or pride to one another.

If your treasure is on earth, your heart will undergo many disappointments, and the storms of life will overwhelm you and hurt your family.  All of the things in life in which you find your primary joy are suddenly gone!

Can you go through all of your possessions and tell which ones will rot and will not apply to your Christian growth?  How can that list, motivate you to seek what is in Matthew 6:33?  Then what will you have, do and feel (Matthew 6:33; 7:24-27; Luke 12:33-34; Hebrews 10:32-39; 1 Timothy 6:17-19)?

When our focus is on possessions, they become our idols, and we worship them.  Our identity, and personification of who we are, becomes branded by what we have, and not who we are in Christ (1 John 5:21).

Let’s look at another key word, Fear the LORD means to trust, serve, and worship Him.  Money and things can easily become the priorities in our lives!  The choice becomes whether we will worship the One True God, or be idolaters, following after false gods.  Know that our real and true treasures are imperishable!  Make a list of them, and put them in a place that you can see daily to encourage yourself.  Keep in mind that true treasures are not material in nature, so look to relationships and character (Proverbs 1:7; 3:5; Matthew 6:33; 1 Timothy 6:9-19; 1 Peter 1:3-5).

You must be able to ask questions, listen, and be vulnerable to reflect, challenge, and address each other’s views and ideas on budgeting.  Do not focus on faults, rather on areas that need growth. Take it slow and develop your budget first.  If you do not do this, then you will be among the countless relationships in our culture filled with miscommunication, hurt, and misery!

  1. Money is not for power and control, it is a tool for effectual living and our Lord’s service! How can you make this your mindset? How will it improve your family?

Make your budget, but first pray, and pray more and treat each other with respect, dignity, listen and take breaks, perhaps have fun doing it! 

Remember, our real and true treasures are imperishable!

Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ! In his great mercy he has given us new birth into a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead,  and into an inheritance that can never perish, spoil or fade. This inheritance is kept in heaven for you, who through faith are shielded by God’s power until the coming of the salvation that is ready to be revealed in the last time. 1 Peter 1:3-5

 

CMTA Notes and Syllabus

My notes and syllabus for this week’s conference, You can have a “Wondrous Marriage!” 

I will be showing you how to do a workshop, seminar or small group curriculum that you can lead yourself in your church or home.

 For weekend seminar:  Marriage Tune-up 

For day seminar:               LoveChallengeho

It is about: God’s precepts on building a great marriage and making marriage succeed even in times of stress and turmoil. You will discover the real authenticity of our Lord, will enable us to build a real authenticity of love and respect, that will in turn build a “Wondrous Marriage!”

Why this workshop?

Yes, there are many good ones to go to, Family Life, Gottman’s, even Marriage Encounter, and New Life charges $1,598 per couple, it is considered the best and it is, but this one is better. Why? It is based on 25 years of doing this, with ongoing research, and it is based on God’s timeless true Truth, not a psychological fad. Plus, we have practical, you can use now, information that will help you for many years to come. And you can do it in your church, do it cost effectively instead of outsourcing your ministry and people.

https://thisismarriage.org/marriage-tune-up-workshop/