If your home is centered on Christ, everything about your family will be about Him. Not about you, not about your spouse, and certainly not about your children. It means He is the focus; His expectations of you is the focus; His will is the focus. It means He has the final say and with every decision we take, we ensure it aligns with His Word. When we deliberately make Christ the focus, we begin to behave like Him, His nature finds expression in us and helps us do the things we naturally would rather not do.
So much so that when we speak or in our actions, all we’re thinking about is “would The Lord be pleased with me?” When you make your home all about you, or any member of your family, it creates room for disappointments and frustrations which will ultimately cause divisions/strife in the home.
Strive for a Christ-centered home and let it begin with you. Work towards a deeper relationship with Him which will help prune away negative traits in you. Then help your family members do the same (by praying for them and being a good example) until each person takes their eyes off each other and redirects their focus on where it should be – Jesus. When Jesus is indeed the center of any home, God’s intentions for marriage and the family is expressed with ease! Blessed weekend!
If you want to get your spouse to see something from your perspective, always remember that there is a right way to do so. Sometimes we don’t see the results we’d like because our approach is wrong. If you use the wrong approach, of course you will get the wrong results. Differences of opinion don’t have to lead to fighting, quarreling, or arguing. Don’t accept such things as normal because it would give room for strife, etc if care is not taken (James 3:16). When wisdom is at work anywhere, even those different opinions can be handled with peace, leading to progress. The wisdom from above is peaceable and reasonable (James 3:17). Raising your voice, insulting your spouse, etc just because they are yet to understand your point of view is not only immature but foolish.
If you communicate effectively, the information you’re trying to pass across will be rightly understood and accurately interpreted.
Your spouse may be argumentative but remember it takes two people to argue; instead of joining in, be prayerful and use wisdom (it is better than strength). If you are just an argumentative person, learn to calm down and allow the Holy Spirit to help you be a man/woman of peace. Nobody likes an argumentative spouse; even those who have accepted it as normal, would prefer if it were not part of their relationship.
Discuss, reason together, resolve issues respectfully but don’t fight or argue (leave that for the court of law). Single ladies and gentlemen, please accept this truth also; it’ll help you! Avoiding a fight is a mark of honor; only fools insist on quarreling (Proverbs 20:3). So, work on it until it’s no more part of your relationship/family. That is wisdom!
Throwback to when I took my relationship with the saxophone public! When my dream to learn how to play an instrument reached its peak, I’d picked this beauty up but wasn’t sure I could handle it. I saw it as a tough one to play (aren’t they all?). Last year, I made up my mind to challenge myself and make this relationship work! When we decided to compose a song for my sweet mama in-law’s 60th birthday, I seized the opportunity!
Thanks to a fantastic teacher, within such a short period of time, my love for this instrument deepened and it has taught me so much more about myself! Since the day this picture was taken, I’ve refused to let the sax go. I didn’t know I could produce such beautiful melodies! In fact, I feel like a saxophonist. hmm I shall get there (you better watch out)! This was one nerve-wracking day of my life but I’m grateful God showed me as usual, that anything I commit myself to is as good as done.
Honestly, any relationship that’ll work requires dedication/commitment. No marriage can be built on simply praying, fasting, etc. After that, we must still do the needful: work for what we want! It requires having to stretch ourselves/be uncomfortable but that’s how the beauty of it will show forth. Depending on how we view it; marriage is a great opportunity to learn more about ourselves and tackle certain personal character traits within us that need to get lost.
Many issues in relationships can be easily resolved if both people are willing to calm down, think and talk things through. You may find out that you have the same point but because you’re so eager to get your point across, there is a miscommunication (Prov 18:2). However, once we decide to make it work and are ready to follow the process, it’ll produce a beautiful melody within our homes (get it?)!
Apart from likening this to relationships, I encourage you – Anything you desire to do, don’t wait any longer; do it! Everything we want to succeed at requires the same thing – dedication/commitment, a willingness to challenge ourselves. Don’t forget that as God helps, what you also do, determines what comes out of it!
Oneness in marriage can’t be overemphasized. Any home where the husband and wife are of one mind and they speak the same language (unity), they are able to accomplish anything they set out to do! The power of oneness as found in Genesis 11:6, paints a solid picture. God acknowledged their unity and said nothing would be impossible that they purposed to do from that moment on. How needful is that in a marriage? Learn to work together so you can have the results you desire.
Strengthen your oneness by doing productive things together and talking through everything! Learn to be of one mind particularly on matters of your home and concerning any goals or plans you may have. Lean on each other for ideas and support, and work together to bring those ideas to life. All the enemy needs is for a husband and wife to be divided, because then he can easily do as he pleases in their home. Give him no place!
While we shouldn’t lose our identities in marriage, we shouldn’t also live our lives without taking consideration of how it will affect our spouses and the relationship/family.
There are things that must be handled jointly if we want to have peace and experience progress in the home. Be wise!
Don’t allow a wedge to remain between you and your spouse; that is a costly mistake. Marriage is one of the pleasures and blessings of life but we have to manage it well if we want to enjoy it. And if we don’t maintain a house United, we may miss out on the great things we can accomplish together, to the glory of God.
If you’ve hurt your spouse in any way, humble yourself and apologize. Don’t just apologize, be remorseful about whatever wrong you’ve done and don’t make it a habit. A lot of issues in many homes could easily be resolved if apologies flowed freely and each person accepted responsibility whenever they were the point of offense.
We must strive not to offend our spouses but there are times it will happen (hopefully unintentionally), and when it does, we must be quick to resolve it and reconcile. The longer you refuse to correct your wrongdoing, the greater the damage will be. Nobody should have to plead with you and coerce you to apologize to your spouse, either. Let it flow freely out of you. It takes nothing from you to say, “I’m sorry”, “I didn’t mean it”, “please forgive me”, etc with a matching attitude.
If such simple words and actions will keep your home stable, why not do it? You must give the devil no place! If your spouse indicates that they have been hurt by something you did or said, don’t ignore their feelings. Being apologetic and taking every attempt to make it up, doesn’t take anything from you. Don’t let your pride get in the way and don’t make excuses for your offense; instead make adjustments/corrections.
Please know that if offending and apologizing becomes your trademark in your home, it’ll be hard for peace to reign and it will affect the trust/forgiveness your spouse extends towards you, so again don’t make it a habit. Whatever you do, be a promoter of peace and unity; your marriage needs both (and much more, including apologies) to flourish! Single ladies and gentlemen, take note!
A worthy wife is a crown for her husband, but a disgraceful woman is like cancer in his bones – Prov. 12:4! Strive to be a worthy wife, a woman of noble character, an excellent wife, a virtuous woman. A woman of a meek and gentle spirit (1 Peter 3:4). Who wouldn’t want such a wife? I’m still a work in progress but I’m one crown my husband proudly wears! Don’t be the wife who disgraces her husband. Don’t be the one who doesn’t know how to tame her tongue, a troublemaker, who gossips around town, spreading her husband’s imperfections to anyone who will listen. Those are signs of a foolish woman (Proverbs 14:1).
God created us as helpers so we must not turn ourselves into something we’re not. Be a helper and a supporter. An encourager and an asset! Keep striving to be the best you possible in all departments of your life. Do well outside your home but do better at home. Don’t excel outside the home and fall short within the home. God’s grace is sufficient for excellence in all that we do.
Your husband may not be behaving as you’d like but don’t allow his behavior to bring out the worst in you. Instead, be prayerful and seek help from the Holy Spirit. Be wise when you want issues resolved in the home. If you still have young children, remember you are an example to them; they are watching you closely, and they will speak of what they saw, in the future.
As always, if you feel yours is broken beyond repair, seek godly counsel from those who will do all they can to stir you in the right direction. There’s nothing that can’t be restored as long as God is involved, and as long as we are willing to cooperate with Him. Of course, a husband should also do what is right; it takes two to build a home.
Any husband who is loving correctly (Ephesians 3:25), will provoke positive results in his wife and see the proofs in his home. However this is specifically to admonish us as women to strive to be honorable and exemplary wives, circumstances notwithstanding. And to do all you can to bring out the best in your home! If you’re a single lady, don’t wait, now is the time to work on yourself!
“Make ALLOWANCE for each other’s faults, and FORGIVE anyone who offends you. Remember, the Lord forgave you, so you must forgive others. Above all, clothe yourselves with LOVE, which binds us all together in perfect harmony. And let the PEACE that comes from Christ rule in your hearts. For as members of one body you are called to live in peace…” – Colossians 3:13-15!
If both people are being real, their flaws will show in a marriage but we must make allowance for it and be willing to forgive so we can dwell together in peace and experience progress in our family life! Discuss issues but don’t let issues divide you! This Scripture is a perfect summary of this thing called (a Christian) marriage!
The truth is that in every relationship, we have to be open to taking corrections as often as necessary. You may think you’re the nicest, most mature person around but don’t forget that your spouse or potential spouse is the one on the receiving end. You may not be as gentle as you think you are. I often say that marriage is the ultimate test of our true character and the fruit of the Spirit at work in us. You may consider yourself to be patient, and slow to anger but how you manage yourself when your emotions are tested is what reveals who you really are.
Accept that you are imperfect (aren’t we all?) and be a good sport about taking corrections when your errors are pointed out. Accept that your ideas are not the only good ones available. Accept that you actually don’t have all the answers and compromise when needed. Please, don’t be a fault finder either. Sometimes, a person may claim to be correcting but they are actually just trying to find faults unnecessarily; that’s unwise.
If you need to correct, do so in love (and with a lot of wisdom), not with malicious intent. And if you’re corrected, accept it in good faith and work on yourself; that’s a sign of humility. Don’t get defensive and don’t throw tantrums. If it has been pointed out, just work on it so it doesn’t cause tension in your relationship/marriage. It’s not about being perfect but it is very much about growth. However, growth is impossible if we’re unwilling to accept correction and do something with it!
It’s one thing to know. It’s another thing to do what we know. In our relationships and families, many of us actually know what to do but most of us don’t do it. The gathering of information is not what will cause us to enjoy life or family as God intends. It’s the application of the knowledge gathered that is the difference maker. It’s not enough to read all the books, attend seminars, receive counseling and learn from others. We must be willing to do what we learn in season and out of season; when we feel like it and when we don’t feel like it.
If you know that walking in strife will only further divide you and your (potential) spouse, it’s unwise to allow it to linger. If you know that your temper is getting in the way of an enjoyable relationship, do something about it. If you know your words tend to be more hurtful than helpful, examine yourself and make a change. There’s no point in going after knowledge if you know you’re just going to store it somewhere. Jesus calls such an individual a fool and He states that a wise person is the one who knows (hears) and does (Matthew 7:25-27). That person is the one whose house won’t collapse in the midst of floods or winds blowing heavily, in the midst of crisis, and in the midst of instability.
When you know better, do better. It doesn’t mean you should just stay in an unhealthy or abusive (emotionally and otherwise) relationship. If you believe you have done all you know to do, prayerfully get the counseling you need so you don’t take drastic steps. There just may be one more thing to do that will turn the tide in your relationship or home. If your (potential) spouse knows what to do but they refuse to do it, pray for them.
Ask God for wisdom on how to manage them but never stop doing your part. It’s true that knowledge is power but it’s doing that provokes results. So as we’re bent on adding value to ourselves, we must be ready to put the value gained to work. Until we come to that point, any knowledge we feel we have is irrelevant.
The importance of going after the knowledge and understanding needed to run marriage and family effectively can’t be overemphasised. While wisdom builds a home, understanding establishes it, and knowledge fills the home with rare and precious jewels (Proverbs 24:3). Knowledge brings stability (Isaiah 33:6) and a person who lacks understanding is as good as dead (Proverbs 21:16).
Husbands are told to dwell with their wives according to knowledge (1 Peter 3:7) – I believe wives should do the same. While wisdom is the principal thing, we’re told it must be gotten with understanding (Proverbs 4:7). It’s obvious that the place of knowledge and understanding is crucial for any endeavour in life, including in the home. When a person lacks knowledge or understanding, a journey of 1 year can take 10 years! Resources and energy that could have been engaged in important things are wasted.
Even time that should be invested in being productive is lost. Too many families have been negatively impacted simply because knowledge and understanding is lacking. For every issue, there is a solution. It’s in God’s Word and in Holy Spirit (the most authentic marriage counsellor) inspired resource materials. No matter how long you’ve been married, if things are not working as they ought to, go after what you need. If you’re a single lady or gentleman, arm yourself appropriately. Marriage is not like everything else so you can never have too much information about it. Things won’t automatically change for the better for us without a deliberate and conscious effort to arm ourselves with the information (knowledge) and insight (understanding) that will help bring the best out of us and then out of our family life.
Read books, get counsel if necessary, just do what you need to do to get things right. Whatever you do, don’t wallow in pride and ignorance while your relationship suffers. The solution is readily available. Go after it and engage the truths you find. That is wisdom! Blessed weekend. – Kemi Oyedepo