Sep 01

Lessons from Love & Respect

READ TO FEED YOUR MARRIAGE – GREAT MARRIAGES REQUIRE HEALTHY FOOD.


Read to Feed Your Marriage allows you to read a great marriage book by a world renowned marriage expert and you get a licensed counselor to give you weekly tips and challenges to transform your marriage from average to amazing.Join us from June 2nd to September 8th as we read Love & Respect: The Love She Most Desires, The Respect He Desperately Needs by Dr. Emerson Eggerichs.

GET THE BOOK TODAY

Chapter 23 – The Real Reason to Love & Respect

 

Why Should You Give Love& Respect to Your Spouse?


It is comprehensible that love and respect can be hard to express when couples are facing hard time. These hard times can range from lack of trust, fear of the unknown, fear of being taking advantage by their spouse, past childhood trauma to severe emotional and physical abuse. 

With so many issues that can threaten your marriage why should you seek to really increase love and respect in your marriage? It is simple the benefits outweigh the costs. Now, I want to be extremely clear; I am not making light of trauma and abuse. I truly believe those spouses that are facing abuse should seek protection and stability before working on the marriage. If you are afraid for your life, you cannot really be present in the marriage. Get help. Don’t allow abuse to take your marriage hostage.

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Photo Courtesy of Photostock under freedigitalphotos.net

The benefits of giving unconditional love and respect in your marriage can be endless once you move past the marriage issues. Just to list some:


Getting out of the crazy cycle with your spouse

Being present in your marriage instead of just existing

Your marriage manifest a Godly purpose

Let your marriage be a mission to other couples

Let your marriage be a legacy to your children

Having peace in your marriage instead of bumping head with your spouse.

Moving from marriage issues to giving full love and respect to your spouse require you to keep your marriage health at the forefront of your mind. Most couples pledged for better and for worse, but do not work to prevent the worse from happening. Take the small victories and keep focusing on the positive feedback you receive from your spouse. Keep in mind that it took awhile for conflicts to grow in your marriage, be patient and allow your spouse a chance to increase love and respect.

 

Challenge of the WeekIf you can dream it, it can happen. It is time to move from constant  marriage issues to a marriage health full of love and respect.  See the benefits you can reach in your marriage.


This week dream big for your marriage. List the benefits you will get if you give unconditional love and respect in your marriage

Thank you for reading

Aug 29

5 Reasons You Should Lean Into Your Marriage Conflicts

For many couple facing marriage conflicts is like walking on egg shells. Deep down inside, there is a desire to have a healthy marriage. However, most couples look the other way instead of getting acquainted with their marriage problems. Consequently, you see two individuals dancing a game of marriage doom.

On one of my recent talks about marriage, I addressed the benefits of leaning into marriage conflicts. I was surprised that many spouses saw leaning into marriage conflicts as just getting to a solution. Leaning into marriage conflict is more than just facing the hard issues. Leaning into your marriage conflicts is not accepting the conflict as a final solution; it is not immersing or participating in the conflict. Most importantly leaning in your marriage conflicts is not tolerating the conflicts. Leaning into your marriage conflict is about taking actions to move your marriage from struggling to healthy. Leaning into your marriage conflicts is about taking your marriage from average to awesome. So, here are 5 Benefits of leaning in your marriage conflicts.

David Dominici Castello - FDPPhoto Courtesy of David Castillo Dominici under freedigitalphotos.net

You learn how to move from avoidance to resolution – Many spouses who are facing marriage issues are usually guilty of a major marriage killer – AVOIDANCE. Avoidance leads more couple to divorce than any other marriage killers. By avoiding issues in your marriage, you allow them to grow. When you are trying to face them, they look like giants. That avoidance leads to anxiety. Consequently, you feel paralyze. Avoidance left unconquered leads to inaction. By leaning into your marriage conflicts, you chip away at your anxiety, you are facing yourself, you see your reality and you’re facing your marriage and your spouse. Don’t run away. Lean in and lean in with support from others if needed.

You learn how you are contributing to the conflict/s – I have counseled many spouse who really thought they were completely innocent of the conflicts that are in their marriage. However, once they looked closer, they could see how they have participated in self sabotage, dysfunctional and vicious patterns, escalated the conflicts, gave into false resolution and much more. This is such a powerful benefit for you and your spouse because it brings awareness. You get to know yourself at a deep core level. You can only control the person in the mirror when you are willing to accept how you are contributing to the conflicts and how you are going to change that. Lean into your marriage conflicts to learn how to stop contributing to the madness. 

You learn how you can support and help your spouse – Notice I say support and help – not change your spouse. When you are leaning into marriage conflicts, your mission is not to change your spouse. If you are facing a conflict and you are attempting to change your spouse, you are likely putting more gasoline on fire. I guarantee you, your spouse will feel judge and invalidated. Supporting and helping your spouse is about managing your emotions to not pour more fuel in a heated conflict. Leaning into your marriage troubles is about trying to understand where your spouse is coming from. Leaning into your marriage conflicts is about really validating your spouse’s emotions of fear, anger, disappointment, etc. Leaning into your marriage conflicts is about giving encouragement, offering empathy, offering welcome and solicited insights/recommendations and having a willingness to forgive. 

ID-100156155Photo Courtesy of David Castillo Dominici under freedigitalphotos.net

You learn to take 100% responsibility for your marriage – I know that there are two individuals involve in a marriage. However, I have found that couples that have the faulty belief that the husband is responsible for 50% of the marriage and the wife for the other 50% get trapped in the blame game. The 50-50 % mindset does not work in marriage because it leads to spouses pointing the finger. What type of husband or wife do you want to be? The type of spouse that point the finger or the spouse that fights to resolve the issue by having the 100% ownership mindset. When I speak to married groups, I usually ask husbands and wives to focus on their roles. If you make a point to focus on your role in a healthy manner 100%, you are more than halfway into marriage success. I can truly attest that most couples that grow and succeed in resolving marriage issues had taken personal responsibility for the marriage.  

You reach win-win solution – Arriving at win-win solutions is one of the most powerful experiences a couple can share in marriage. Each win-win solution allows you to grow in intimacy, conflict resolution and togetherness. Each conflict that is resolved goes on your love bank shelf as marriage success. When a new challenge is faced, you know you and your spouse did not run away from your conflicts, you can flex your muscles together to win again and again and again. 

Leaning into your marriage troubles might sound counterproductive, but in reality this is one of the best ways you can build a strong marriage. Rome was not built in one day, so it will take time and commitment to build your marriage to a healthy state. Take action and start leaning into your marriage conflicts. 

 

Questions: What would it take for you to lean into your marriage troubles?

 

Thank you for reading

 

Aug 27

Are You Going to Stay There?

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The first time I came across this quote I decided to use it as a personal motivation quote. The more and more I read and used it, it became the perfect quote for my marriage. When we had issues that were difficult to discuss, this was the quote that reminded I need to take action. When I know I needed to make my words match my actions in my marriage, this was one of the quotes that I used.

Married couples around the world do not stay in conflictive marriages because they like it. At times, we do not take the first step because we have not made the decision to leave where we are. It can be fearful for you to decide that you are no longer going to stay in the muck. As hard and painful the emotions of dealing with a hurting marriage might be, it is more painful to sit and watch your marriage deteriorate.

So, this quote has been in my arsenal for awhile. Today, I offer it to you to motivate you to take actions that will help you to create heartfelt emotions in your marriage. My hope is for you to move forward to a healthy and happy marriage.

Probably one quote will not change your marriage in one day. However, if you are tired of t having the same fights and you are ready to build intimacy and rebuild trust this is the perfect quote to motivate you. Don’t leave your marriage in that phase. Act today.


Question: What have you used as motivation to move your marriage to a better place?

Thank you for reading

 

Aug 25

Lessons from Love & Respect

READ TO FEED YOUR MARRIAGE – GREAT MARRIAGES REQUIRE HEALTHY FOOD.


Read to Feed Your Marriage allows you to read a great marriage book by a world renowned marriage expert and you get a licensed counselor to give you weekly tips and challenges to transform your marriage from average to amazing.Join us from June 2nd to September 8th as we read Love & Respect: The Love She Most Desires, The Respect He Desperately Needs by Dr. Emerson Eggerichs.

GET THE BOOK TODAY

Chapter 22 – The Energizing Cycle Will Work If You Do Relationship

 

 Are You Working in Your Marriage


The first time I picked up Love & Respect I was turned off by the message. The person who rejected the book was the guarded wife. Deep down inside, I think I was afraid the message would be another message. The type of message that confined Christian wives to a forceful submission. I was completely wrong. I was challenged to master my emotions, to be obedient to the scriptures, to communicate loving and quickly with my husband. I started seeing all the benefits of giving my husband respect when I made the decision to work in my marriage.

I encounter the same guarded behaviors I had in so many marriages. Some husband s wonder – why should I give love to my wife if she is not meeting my needs and I have many wives question the reason to give respect when they feel their husbands are not respectable.

If you are facing a hard time accepting, the love and respect message, I understand you. As human being we have feeling and that is one of the most powerful differences we have over the other species. It is quite beneficial to feel. At times, it is those same emotions that lead us to put up a wall. It is our innate tendency to guard, protect, defend and keep ourselves safe. Guarding, defending and protecting ourselves from our spouse defeat the purpose of being one. For a healthy marriage to be present between two spouses, the walls must come down. I have been down that road. I had a good marriage but it would not be what it is today, if I was not willing to let down my walls.

Husbands – Are you putting your walls down? Are you spelling love to your wife? Does she get closeness from you? Do you communicate your thoughts with her to a level that she gets true openness? Are you understanding? Are you promoting peace in your marriage? Does your wife feel secure in your loyalty toward her? Does she feel esteemed?

Witthaya Phonsawat FDPPhoto Courtesy of Witthaya Phonsawat under freedigitalphotos.net

 

Wives – Are you putting your walls down? Are you spelling respect to your husband? Do you respect his authority? Do you seek his insight? Do you understand his desire to have hierarchy? Do you underhand his need to conquest? Do you meet his sexual needs? Do you understand and meet his need of shoulder to shoulder relationship?

Don’t let your walls prevent you from seeing that love and respect can truly work in your marriage. Focus on the ways your spouse have been meeting your needs. Dr. Emerson reported that a wife wrote to him and mentioned that she realized – it was not that her husband was not showing her love or trying to understand her, but that the efforts he made to love her was not the exact ways she wanted, so she dismissed all loving actions he poured out to her. That was her wall. When she realized that she appreciated her husband s for his loving actions and communicated with respect to request love. What is your wall/s and are you willing to work on breaking your wall/s to have an energizing marriage.

 

Challenge of the Week – Are you working in your marriage? We have the the tendency to protect, guard and defend ourselves. That is great when we are in danger.


But at times, we guard our hearts from the only person we are suppose to open our heart to. This week work in your marriage. Put down your walls. Write down 3 barriers that are keeping you from working in your marriage and list down what actions you are taking this week take to break down those walls.

 

 

Thank you for reading

Aug 20

Are You Making a Daily Choice For Your Marriage?

If you have told me we would have had our first argument within the first month of marriage, I would have laughed. The wedding festivities had me on an emotional high. I couldn’t image that we would hit our first bump so early. Looking back, I’m glad that we had our first argument within the first month of marriage. This is one argument that helped me set our marriage for success.

I have always heard that marriage is about making daily personal choices. It can even seem so silly to say make your marriage by making daily choices. After all, marriage involves two individuals. Well, it is true. But, if I wait on my husband to apologize when I can fight for our marriage, I ‘m not making a daily choice to fight for our marriage.

Even saying” making the daily choice” is easier said than done. When my couple and therapist friends warned me the honeymoon would wear off, due to life, I understood the warning. I just expected it to come way later. Life just doesn’t happen in marriage. It is reality. Your wife is tired: you‘re tired. Both of you would like to just be left alone. 

Who wants to give emotionally after the 5 o’clock traffic?

NIKON D700, AF Zoom 24-70mm f/2.8G f/2.8, 1/1600, ISO 320, 24mmPhoto Courtesy of Sean McGrath under Flickr Creative Commons


That was exactly what I was faced. After our argument was resolved, I realized that I must make a daily choice to fight for our marriage even if my husband did not want to fight. For me, that meant making 4 daily choices. Having daily conversation with my husband even when I feel tired. Making a point to connect before he leaves the house and when he comes home. Making a daily choice to fight for our marriage also means that would be intentional about encouraging my husband by meeting his emotional needs. I was challenged to look at my heart and make a daily choice to forgive when I feel that I was wrong.

These choices have not been easy. However, they have helped me to continue build a healthy marriage with my husband. We have failed many times, but we continue to be each other’s number one fan


Question: How would you daily choice to fight for your marriage look like?

 

Thank you for reading

 

Aug 18

Lessons from Love & Respect

READ TO FEED YOUR MARRIAGE – GREAT MARRIAGES REQUIRE HEALTHY FOOD.


Read to Feed Your Marriage allows you to read a great marriage book by a world renowned marriage expert and you get a licensed counselor to give you weekly tips and challenges to transform your marriage from average to amazing.Join us from June 2nd to September 8th as we read Love & Respect: The Love She Most Desires, The Respect He Desperately Needs by Dr. Emerson Eggerichs.

GET THE BOOK TODAY

Chapter 20 – Relationship – Appreciate His Desire for Shoulder – to – Shoulder Friendship

Chapter 21 – Sexuality – Appreciate His Desire for Sexual Intimacy

 


Can We Really Be Friends & Lovers?


Marriages do not fail due to lack of love. Most couple enters the marriage with heart full of love. However, little by little bit, they compromised the deep love by putting their friendship on hold. And some couple even takes friendship out of the equation. Looking back at dating lives, a wife would spend time with her husband doing activities. This is the same couple that would go to basket ball games, bike riding, etc. Marriage enters the picture the wife stops playing with her husband. The husband has his own activities and the wife has her own activities. Couple that plays together stays together. Friendship leads right to the door of sexual intimacy. Couple that builds deep friendship is the couple that will be able to learn and give to each other sexually.

I encourage wives that come to my office complaining of lack of intimacy to look back at their dating lives. Most of these wives reported that they felt connected when they spent time doing activities with their spouses.

What happened after marriage? LIFE

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Consequently, it is very important for couples that want to be friends and lovers to work at friendship and sexual intimacy simultaneously. About 1/3 of married couples reported being unsatisfied with their sex life. Shoulder-to shoulder friendship cannot happen without sexual intimacy and sexual intimacy cannot happen without friendship.

Here are some tips that wives can use to build a friendship and deep sexual intimacy in their marriages.

Spend time just doing activity that you and your husband enjoy

Understand that your husband is a visual creature

Do not use sex as a weapon

Understand admiration for your husband will lead to deeper friendship

Initiate sex

Don’t withhold sex to get emotional intimacy

Your husband craves your friendship and your sexual intimacy

Sexual intimacy for men leads to emotional intimacy

Spend time being with each other

If you want your marriage to last build a strong friendship and great sexual intimacy.

Challenge of the Week Are you  a friend and a lover to your husband?

Lack of love is not the reason for divorce. It is the lack of deep friendship. The kind of friendship that lead to emotional and eventually sexual intimacy. This is the week to be friends and lovers.

This week play with your husband.  For friendship, do an activity  with  your husband that you know that he will enjoy and for sexual intimacy initiate sex.

 

Thank you for reading

Aug 15

What Will Your Kid Say About Your Marriage?

Your kid will tell a story about your marriage. What will be your story? Your know children are like sponges; they soak up everything that they see and hear. My son will turn 2 years old next month and it is so funny to see him imitating me and my husband. If we hug, he wants a hug too. He usually run to us and say in his toddler one or two words sentence “hug or want hug” while raising his hands in the air. We usually proceed by picking him up or coming down to his level to get the most loving hug you can imagine.

In the same manner we model love, we are aware that he is watching us. I’m not saying he will be a robot because he will probably listen to different music or have different hobbies than we do. We know we will make mistake and we hope he will learn from them. However, one thing I know for sure, there are core values and beliefs we live by and we want to instill in him. Especially the way we treat each other.

There are adults who choose not to get married because of the marital destruction they witnessed as a child. If you take a moment and think, you might know one or two friends who lived a childhood of relationship chaos and would not dare try it. Sure, once you are an adult, it is your responsibility to heal those past wounds and move on. But at times, it is easier said than done. 

Jannoon028 FDPPhoto Courtesy of Jannoon028

During a recent conversation I had with a girlfriend, she informed me that she is ending her relationship because she did not want her daughter to think that emotional abuse was normal. The situation saddened me because I knew staying in the relationship without a change will hurt the child and leaving the relationship will hurt the child. All parties in this relationship are suffering and will continue to do so until the story is change.

In the above story, you have a dad who loves his daughter and work hard to provide for his family, but he is totally blind about the consequences his behaviors will have on his daughter. This is a man who would be furious if a guy addresses his daughter in the same manner he addresses his partner. He wants only the best for his princess. Yet, he put a veil of denial over his eyes about how his actions hurting his princess.

Don’t be naïve. Your words and actions are powerful. You can say don’t yell at your mother all the day long, but if you are yelling at your wife, why would your child behave differently? Sure, you tell your daughter not to talk her father in that tone, but you were just talking to your husband in the living room the same way. What the difference? You an adult and they are children?

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Well, there is no difference. If you honor your spouse, your children are more likely to do so. And the scary thing is you might be modeling the type spouse they will look for. Convey respect, they will do so. Convey emotional abuse, they will need to fight it intentionally not to repeat the same story.

Imagine your child is telling your marriage story, what will be your story? Are you confident, you are modeling the character of the spouse they should be looking for?


Question: What is one thing that you are modeling or want to model in your marriage for your children?

 

Thank you for reading

 

Aug 13

Is Your Marriage Operating on Short-Term Gains?

A husband had an argument with his wife. He decided to leave their house right after the argument to “teach her a lesson.” Since his wife did not respond the way he wanted, he proceeded to not come home that night. The D-word (Divorce) was discussed; they ended in my office. This couple engaged me to start an intensive marriage makeover because the D -word was being discussed. Sadly, this is not an uncommon practice in many marriages. So many couples live out their marriages on short term gains and when the consequence is the end of the marriage, and then they seek help.

Now, I truly applauded the above couple for fighting for their marriage. The D- word was the ultimate consequence that helped them see that short terms gains always lead to bad consequences. You might argue that your marriage is not near divorce. But, why play with fire and burn a lifetime relationship piece by piece? 

Peeling the layers of the above marriage and many other marriages in my office, a common pattern always come up in marriage that are operating on short term gains – continual unresolved conflicts mix with one spouse winning. In the above case, the short-term gains for this husband were to teach his wife a lesson and not come home. Sure, his actions hurt his wife, but at that moment he felt he got his way, he won. The marriage took a severe blow. This particular unresolved conflict could have ended their marriage. Marriages that function on short term gains suffer from trust issues, because each time a spouse win at the expense of the marriage the unresolved wounds are reopened. 

Imagerymajestic FDPPhoto Courtesy of Imagerymajestic

If you are looking to break the short term gains patterns in your marriage, here are 4 tips that will help you. 

Manage your emotions – When a word leaves your mouth, you cannot take it back. Control your thoughts before you say or commit actions that will your spouse or your marriage. If you feel that you are too upset, inform your spouse you will take a breather (15 minutes to regulate your emotions) and then commit to come back and resolve the conflict when you have calmed down. 

Set up guardrails to protect your marriage – Keep at the forefront of your mind tips and rules that will help you and your spouse to be successful when resolving conflicts. Think of the long term effects and gains of your conflicts. Some guardrails to consider – no use profanities, no use emotional blackmail, no aggressive behaviors, do not abandon your home, do not threat divorce, do not involve the children, do not threaten your spouse with divorce, etc. Sit down with your spouse and really discuss what will protect the marriage for the good.

Resolve ALL conflicts – Many couples avoid facing conflicts to keep the peace. When unresolved conflicts are lurking around your marriage, there is no peace. If you cannot resolve conflicts with your spouse, get help. Sweeping marriage conflicts under the carpet will lead to destruction. Sure short terms gains of not addressing your conflicts; you are not facing with the anxiety of facing each other or a possible blow out. However day by day, you are watching your marriage dies slowly. 

Focus on the marriage health – When you seek resolution for conflicts, keep your marriage as the priority. Pick a win-win solution that will benefit both of you.


Fight for your marriage not each other. Fight to have long term gains that will lead you to a healthy and happy marriage.

Questions: What can you do to increase your marriage to long-term gains basis?

 

Thank you for reading

 

Aug 11

Lessons from Love & Respect

READ TO FEED YOUR MARRIAGE – GREAT MARRIAGES REQUIRE HEALTHY FOOD.


Read to Feed Your Marriage allows you to read a great marriage book by a world renowned marriage expert and you get a licensed counselor to give you weekly tips and challenges to transform your marriage from average to amazing.Join us from June 2nd to September 8th as we read Love & Respect: The Love She Most Desires, The Respect He Desperately Needs by Dr. Emerson Eggerichs.

GET THE BOOK TODAY

Chapter 17 – Hierarchy – Appreciate His Desire to Protect and Provide
Chapter 18 – Insight – Appreciate His Desire to Analyze and Counsel

 


Should a Husband be The Leader in His Marriage?


Husbands arecalled to be the leader in marriage. This leadership has been misconstrued especially by bad feminist leaders and domineering men. Consequently, in many marriages, the husband’s role as the leader is being abused, crippled or it is nonexistent.


In cases where the husband is domineering, the forceful control is just a fascade for fear and lack of self-esteem. In some cases, these husbands even get emotionally and physically abusive. However, these husbands are not leaders; they are tyrants who are afraid. These domineering husbands are in fact emotional little boys in grown men bodies. Unless, both wife and husband get help, the marriage will fail.

In cases where the husbands are crippled leaders, the leadership has no direction. These husbands are unsure of themselves. They are afraid to make decisions. In some cases, the crippled leader wants his wife’s support but what he gets his constant nagging or his leadership is undermined. Little by little, the desire to be a leader dies. Consequently, both wife and husband need to get help in order to have a healthy marriage.quotescover-PNG-85

In cases where the husband’s leadership is completely absent, there is a lack of hope in the husband’s corner and completely tiredness and sometime contempt in the wife’s corner. The husband is no longer emotionally available in the marriage and in some cases; the husband is not available physically. The wife is left to be the leader and the helper. Consequently this is a perfect recipe for disaster. Two are better than one when two are interacting in unison. Some wives try to motivate their husbands by pointing his flaws, this tactics backfire. When a man feels down, pointing out his flaws will make him feel worse.

Some wives are afraid of being taking advantage of and being controlled and as a result, these wives undermined their husbands leadership, use manipulation to get their ways. This tactic is solely base on fear. I encourage these wives to be open and honest about their emotions instead of letting lack of trust govern their marriages.

Should a husband be the leader in his marriage?


Yes. Not a tyrant leader. Not a crippled leader. Not an absent leader. But a servant leader. A leader who would be willing to die for his family and for his wife. A leader who makes decision not out of selfishness but for the good of his family. A leader who have the gift of analyzing and counseling his family. Sadly, many husbands have believed the lies of bad feminists, domineering men, nagging wives, and the destructive media have told them. Consequently, many husbands have given up their position as leader without a fight.

Ambro FDPPhoto Courtesy of Ambro under Freedigitalphoto.net

So, if you are a wife who wants to motivate your husband to be a leader, apply the following tips:


Allow your husband to be the leader

Support his decisions without complaining and manipulation

Praise his good decisions

Treat him as a leader instead as the center of all the problems.

Be gracious when his decisions do not come out the way he desired

Do not attack his leadership

Give his ideas worthy considerations

Do not ridicule him

Don’t be self-righteous or a know it all

Be a loving peacemaker

Appreciate his insights

Treat him with respect instead of contempt and criticism

Share your concerns about his decisions respectfully

A thing with two heads is called a monster. Husbands Be the servant leader that your role require. Wives – Appreciate your husband desire to serve and lead.

 

Challenge of the Week Are you allowing your husband to be the leader he is called to be?

In a healthy marriage, the husband is the leader. Leadership does not equate to dictatorship. Many wives fear their husband’s leadership and some wives accept to be doormat. Real husband leads with the heart of a servant.

This week what actions can you take to propel servant leadership in your husband. Start now.

 

Thank you for reading

Aug 08

Is Your Work or Calling Destroying the Viability of Your Marriage?

I was having a conversation with my husband and he mentioned to me that recently he has encountered many spouses who are placing their marriages at risk. He proceeded to tell that he would never sacrifice the health of our marriage for anything. Needless to say, once again, I felt grateful that God has blessed me with a wonderful man. Ensuring that our marriage is healthy did not happened by surprise. From the day we got engaged, we have been working to keep our marriage healthy. Are we a perfect couple? No. Actually far from it. Yes, we do have arguments even though I am a marriage counselor. We worked daily to ensure the viability of our marriage.


The common factor that my husband saw in these spouses – they have a great heart. However, these husbands were chasing the dollar. I am all in for husbands and wives providing for the family. However, if you are chasing the dollar by sacrificing your marriage, you will end up without a family. I have repeated the following message to couples over and over again. If you are chasing the dollar, you are telling your spouse and children the dollar is more important.
In my counseling work with couples, I noticed that men and women who are chasing the dollar at worst  did not have a calling and at best the “calling” was unrealistic. Most of these spouses actually hated their jobs. It is not a dream job; it is more of a curse. Working with the husbands, they reported more arguments about not spending quality time with the family. Working with the wives, they reported arguments about sacrificing family life and some even motherhood. A work or calling that is causing division in marriage is not a calling at all.

Jenifer Correa FCCPhoto Courtesy of Jenifer Correa under Flickr Creative Commons


Sadly, the same issue is attacking men and women of faith; specifically men and women who are in church ministry. The Bible has been misconstrued to keep men and women in chains. Yes, if your work for the Lord is a constant burden, you are no longer working for the Lord. You have official put yourself in chains. I completely agree that ministry can be challenging. And yes, you will experience hard times with your marriage. Face it, we are not in heaven yet. However, if “serving the Lord” is causing constant marital discords, you are never at home, or you can hardly feed your family, are you really doing The Lord’s work?


Not all of us were born and instantly know what we want to do as a career or what our calling is. Time, experiences, age and life successes and failures can lead us our passion. For some of us it comes naturally and some of us have to seek it out.

Terrell Woods FCCPhoto Courtesy of Terrell Woods under Flickr Creative Commons

So if you are working on finding your passion or you been stuck in a job arguing with your spouse here are some questions to consider:


Is my career a calling or a curse?

Can my work and my calling be two different things?

Does my job help or hurt my marriage?

Does my work/calling promote a positive living in other areas of my life?

Am I sacrificing my marriage for an unrealistic /unplanned goal?

Do I share my calling/career choice with my spouse?

Am I living out my purpose?

Does my spouse support my career choice?

Is my career/calling causing me to steal time, money, energy on an ongoing basis from my marriage?


For my Christian spouses


Does my work please God?

Is my ministry giving God a bad name?

Am I working as if am working for the Lord?

Am I ministering to family first?

I encourage you to protect the health of your marriage. If your calling is to be a full time mom, a businessman or businesswomen, go for it. Under no circumstances should you put the health of your marriage at risk. Two are better than one for a specific reason. In a lifetime the normal married couple will face  challenges like death of love ones, financial issues, sickness, parenting issues etc., why not make a career choice or choose a calling that lessen conflicts?


If you don’t know what you are passionate about, work to know yourself. Dare to dream and put it into actions. Don’t keep chasing the dollar or some unrealistic goals. It would be sad to realize at ninety years old, you settled for less and sacrificed your family for something you never loved. Start by seeking out your passion. Your spouse does not deserve to be condemned to life of marital unhappiness due to your work choice or calling. Ask yourself, am I really protecting the viability of my marriage?

Question: How have your career choices helped your marriage?

Thank you for reading

 

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