What is the most important minute of the day in your marriage? In Drs Les and Leslie Parrott’s study, Your Time-Starved Marriage, they mention that the most important 60 seconds of marriage is the moment you walk in the door, when you greet each other at the end of the day.
These are the moments that are unplanned and spontaneous. A simple greeting, hug, and maybe a kiss to look each other in the eye to say “Hello” and connect. It doesn’t have to be long, maybe 5 minutes. These moments, or possibly a ritual that you can put into practice to grow your marriage, can be so special. Maximize on them, friends.
Rather than going straight to your office, your phone, your computer, your to-do list, or that few minutes you need to breathe after a long day, take advantage of these ordinary, day-to-day moments with your spouse and kids. This first 60 seconds when you come home, to reconnect, can set the tone for your evening as well.
How can you maximize these moments this week?
To learn more, visit lesandleslieparrott.com to get a copy of the book or to check out other resources to grow your marriage.
2020. New Year. New Decade. Renewed Marriage. Same gracious and faithful God.
God knew in advance the two of you would marry. He chose you
to be together, to live out your life as an example of Christ and his church. What
does this look like in our marriage? How do we live a married life “worthy of
the calling” we have received? We may be obedient in our call as individuals to
do everything in the name of the Lord, giving thanks to God, living in harmony
with others, loving and serving others; but how are we doing this as husband
and wife, as one flesh?
Building a marriage “worthy of our calling” means that we
pay attention to our call, our part, in the most glorious work ever known: the
advancement of God’s kingdom. What if we focused on a portion of Ephesians
4:1-3 to read like this?
I urge you to build a marriage worthy of the calling to which you have been called, with all humility and gentleness, with patience, bearing with one another in love, eager to maintain the unity of the Spirit in the bond of peace.
Author Gary Thomas, calls the advancement of God’s kingdom
the “magnificent obsession.” We bring dignity to our marriage, but we also have
something greater to aim for. Happiness is wonderful, but this magnificent
obsession is even bigger (not fighting our happiness, just bigger).
Humility and Gentleness
As we are creating a marriage worthy of our calling, we are
creating a marriage where the character of Jesus is displayed for all to see.
Our calling is to become more Christlike. We should seek the kind of marriage
that serves our calling, rather than seeking to build the kind of marriage we
want. According to Paul’s words in Ephesians 4, we need to be humble and
gentle. Humble with our spouse, our children, our co-workers, other parents at
the soccer games, other moms at the school, our neighbors, and people we see
and serve at church, because Jesus is gentle with his church. We are to be
humble, because Jesus was humble.
Without God’s word, his instruction, we may never give a
second thought to gentleness or humility. There may be times we don’t give it a
first thought. We may find compatibility with our spouse, in liking the same
Netflix series or the same restaurant. We find security or something as
fabulous as making each other laugh. These things are not wrong, but there is
something wrong when there is a lack of gentleness and humility. I’m guessing
most clients are not requesting to meet with a counselor to learn how to be
gentle and humble in their relationships.
Care For Each Other
So how can we aspire to have a marriage worthy of our
calling? We do not act or speak harshly to each other. We do not pressure each
other, dropping our own expectations or dreams on our spouse. God calls us to
be a servant, mutually caring for one another. This is the best way to model
our calling. When people see the way you treat your spouse, they are reminded
Our culture screams everything but humility, yet Jesus
showcased humility, so we must showcase humility as we proclaim Jesus to the
world. Pride destroys relationships and wrecks marriages. Pride is not worthy
of our calling to proclaim a Savior who “made himself nothing, taking the form
of a servant” (Philippians 2:7).
Do you see the difference? Instead of trying to grow a
marriage we want, a magnificent obsession leads us to seek to build the kind of
marriage that reveals Jesus to the world.
To Do This Week:
Spend some time together. Take a look at your
marriage. Does it reflect the character of Jesus to the world?
Be intentional in the way you act and speak to
each other. What are some humble and gentle ways to communicate and encourage
each other through the craziness of life?
In your Bible study this week, take a look at
the character of
Christ. Pray. How can you put these into practice as you build a marriage
“worthy of his calling?”
Summer is here! While you’ve been busy making plans for vacation and activities, what are you planning for you and your spouse? For your marriage? A weekend getaway? A fabulous cruise? What about plans to grow and strengthen your marriage? Quality time together is definitely a need, but what are doing for your marriage in light of eternity?
We’d like to share a resource with you! We are hosting a Couples’ Study, You and Me Forever, on Thursday nights, beginning July 25 at 7pm. Summer plans will be winding down. School for the kiddos will be right around the corner. Gather with some other couples from NP to learn from Francis & Lisa Chan (via video teaching) and enjoy some small group discussion. There’s nothing better than walking alongside others (of various ages and stages in life) who have the same goal as you–to have a Christ-centered marriage.
In their book, You and Me Forever, Francis and Lisa Chan tell us that marriage is great, but it’s not forever. Remember those vows you said on your wedding day, “Til death do us part?” Marriage is only until death do you part. After that is when the eternal rewards or regrets come, depending on how you spent your life. The Chans go on to say, “While we cannot allow lesser things to destroy our marriages, we also cannot allow marriage to distract us from greater things.”
As we pursue God first and foremost, life begins to make sense, and everything else starts falling into place. We enjoy love, laughter, and intimacy in our marriages because these were created to be enjoyed. There is a way to love our spouse and family without ignoring heaven. It all comes down to our focus.
The Chans believe Jesus was right; perhaps, we have it all backwards. The way to have a great marriage is not by focusing on marriage. You might be thinking, “What?” Many of us believe our priorities should be God, Marriage, Family, Work, etc., but are you really prioritizing and living your life in this order? Let’s get together and learn more. Join us on July 25. Get your book today and read the Introduction and Chapter One before we meet the first week. Invite your engaged and married friends. Help others grow and build Christ-centered marriages.
Joy in Him,
NorthPointe Marriage Ministry
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