Being Intentional...in Your Marriage
Phillipians 3:12,13 "I press on...I focus"
How much of your life happens by chance or coincidence? Is any of it by chance? How much control do you have over your life? You may not feel like you have much control or say in your life. But the truth is that the few things you do have control of in your life can make a major difference. What power, what change, what can be accomplished in our lives by that which we can plan and control. Deciding that, with the help of God, you are going to take control of your life, will be one of the most powerful things you'll ever do for yourself. God is in charge, but you are in control of your own life. Your choices and your decisions are your responsibility and a privilege God has given you. God will help you make and hold to the best decisions.
Now consider your marriage and how much control you have. You may say "Well my marriage is certainly out of my control.". That is not true. You are not a victim of fate or bad luck. The love and hope you started your marriage with can be restored and revived with a few simple adjustments.
Decide you are going to have a positive attitude about your spouse. Your spouse is not your enemy. Your spouse becomes your enemy in your mind when you decide they are your enemy. You have to choose to not go there. It's a trap that can destroy your marriage. No one has a perfect marriage. If you want a good marriage you are going to have to decide you're going to have a good marriage. But it's not going to just fall out of the sky on you. You are going to have to work hard at it. Don't be a sissy and make excuses that it's just too hard or it's not going to work or it's just not worth it. You have to decide you are no longer going to live by excuses for having a weak or lukewarm marriage. It's your life and your marriage. What are you going to do about it? When you decide you are going to be forgiving, patient and kind to your spouse, giving them the benefit of the doubt, you are going to do wonders for your marriage and yourself personally. A gracious spouse is a happy, peaceful spouse. So are you thinking about it, or is this too drastic a change for you? It's what you signed up for when you said "I do". If your marriage is good, many other things can be against you, but life will not seem to be that bad. If your marriage is weak, it will affect everything else in your life.
Do Something Different
Once you've recognized you're going to do something about having a better relationship with your spouse, you need to have a change of actions. We all want our spouse to change and our feelings to change before we'll do anything different. That's not how it works. When you start to change your attitude and your actions, your feelings will follow. For example, if you're continually complaining and being negative with your spouse, that's a good place to start making changes. This is one of the main areas of attitude and behavior where you can make major improvements. Seriously, if you are a complainer, no one wants to be around you. It's alright to talk about how you feel but sometimes you just have to grow up and let God help you deal with it. Be wise enough to choose the right things and the right time to bring out into the open with your spouse. Find out what practical area of your marriage and life that needs an adjustment. Then make your move. If you don't know what that might be, ask your spouse. But only if you're ready to hear the truth.
You have to keep going and not quit no matter how you feel. We make sacrifices all the time for things that don't amount to two cents. But when it comes to our spouse we don't want to give an inch. Being married is going to take a strong backbone. Being married is going to cost you and it's going to cost you big at times. You're going to feel like you're doing all the giving and all the hurting. There's nothing that will give you the opportunity to grow up more than marriage. So decide now while the going is not too difficult. Make the commitment that you are in this and you are not going to quit no matter how hard it gets. You don't have to solve all of your problems at once. Just make it through this one thing. Work on it. Talk with your spouse. Be gentle. Find out what the problem is and usually you'll see that a practical adjustment will greatly help.
Be intentional. Focus. Decide. Act. Don't quit.