The euphoria of ‘falling’ in love seems to blind the eyes of two lovers. But not long after marriage, reality sets in. What they do not realize is that they are an imperfect person who has married an imperfect person. The ‘feeling’ of love can disappear quickly with the responsibility and reality of marriage.
In a godly marriage, we are to forsake all others and be glued together to our spouse. God must be the center of our marriage. How we treat each other is how we are treating God. God must be the center of each spouse’s heart. These are the secrets to a strong marriage.
Selfishness is the root of all marital problems. When someone gets involved in sexual sins, addictions, spending money foolishly, making decisions without including the spouse, keeping secrets from each other, ignoring spouse to follow sports, hobbies, being abusive verbally, emotionally or physically etc., – all of these things are based on selfishness. Where is God in the middle of all of these things?
Love is a decision. God demands respect for one another. God demands integrity with each other. God demands submission one to another in the fear of the Lord – Ephs. 5:21. If we have received the Holy Ghost, it is Christ in us the hope of glory. God said, “Be ye Holy for I Am Holy!” God is the great I AM! In Him we are to live and move and have our being. I Cor. 6th chapter tells us that we are to flee sexual immorality. We are the temple of the Holy Ghost – the ‘house’ of God – and we are to glorify God in our body! When we have a personal intimate relationship with God, we will not sin against our marriage.
If we do not put God first in our lives, then we open the door to the sin of selfishness to fulfill the lust of the flesh, the lust of the eyes, and the pride of life. How can a marriage be healed from adultery, addictions, abusiveness, etc? Genuine repentance of the offending spouse must happen. Godly sorrow worketh repentance. True repentance is a heart-felt change of turning around and pursuing a renewed relationship with God. These things must follow:
- There must be a humble spirit and attitude. Sin can never be blamed on someone else. Each person must take ownership of his/her actions. Being humble in spirit is showing a total dependence upon God. If someone has a haughty attitude, it shows there is no genuine repentance.
- Broken trust in marriage is a major issue with any of these sins. It takes a process of time, continued consistent godly actions and attitudes toward the offended spouse that will bring healing. We are an open book read of all men. We are ‘read’ by others through our words and actions.
- There must be qualified godly counseling to help the couple look at what was happening in the marriage that showed signs that the ‘oneness’ of the marriage was being pulled apart.
- Forgiveness is a major key for the healing, but it does not mean to ‘sweep the sin under the rug’ and try to go on in the marriage as if the sin had not happened.
- Forgiveness is a gift the offended spouse gives to self so they are not destroyed by unforgiveness. The offended spouse can only forgive the emotional pain caused by the sin of the offending spouse. The offending spouse must seek their own forgiveness of their sin with God through continual submission to God regarding all they do.
- Selfishness must be crucified daily in Christ Jesus. For the marriage to heal, God must be in the center of all actions and decisions. “Love is patient and kind. Love is not jealous or boastful or proud or rude. It does not demand its own way. It is not irritable, and it keeps no record of being wronged. It does not rejoice about injustice but rejoices whenever the truth wins out. Love never gives up, never loses faith, is always hopeful, and endures through every circumstance.” – 1 Cor. 13: 4 – 7 NLT.
- There are core reasons for a spouse to pull away from the marriage. They must be faced with a godly counselor to help both spouses to be fully responsible to God in their thoughts, feelings, and actions. The only hope for healing a marriage is being accountable to God in all areas of life.
If you want your marriage to avoid these sinful pitfalls, God has a plan in His Word. My book, God’s Design for Marriage, is the ‘blueprint’ for a healthy marriage. God designed marriage for total fulfillment spiritually, emotionally, sexually, and relationally. An intimate spiritual relationship with God must be number one in your life. An intimate relationship with your spouse spiritually, emotionally, and physically must be number two in your life. When you follow this design, your marriage can be healed or, by submission to God, never be broken!!
© Carol Clemans – May 2020
(636) 448-0121 for counseling/teaching