One of the reasons marriages fall apart is seeing too much of one’s spouse. Seriously! When you’re dating, you see the other person only for limited time spans. Then you go home. You only see each other when you are at your best. When you’re married, you see each other all the time, and you soon figure out that your spouse has a long way to go in certain departments. Well, what do you do when those hard realizations dawn on you?
First conclusion: humility. Realize that you’re not always a prize to be with. Second, your spouse is a work in progress. Cut him or her some slack. You are God’s agent to help your spouse grow and develop. “Love is patient,” said St. Paul (1 Corinthians 13:4). It sure is. The question is, are you patient?
Patience means that you take the time to explain your point of view to your spouse. Patience means that you take God’s view of time and play the long game. Think how long God has been working on you. You probably don’t see eye to eye with your spouse on money management, rate of saving, time management, defining what is “clean enough” and what is “tidy enough.”
Take the time to explain patiently what you want and expect. As you wish to be heard, so open your heart to let your spouse straighten you out on a few things—your spouse just may be God’s change agent in your life!
Don’t wait till you feel it. Go first.
Pastor Mark Jeske brought the good news of Jesus Christ to viewers of Time of Grace for 18 years. He is currently the senior pastor at St. Marcus Church, a thriving multicultural congregation in Milwaukee, Wisconsin. Mark is the author of several books and dozens of devotional booklets on various topics. He and his wife, Carol, have four adult children.
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