Proverbs 10:12 NIV
“Hatred stirs up conflict, but love covers over all wrongs.”
Marriage is a choice between two people.Hopefully no one was twisting your arm when it came to saying “I do” on your wedding day. Do you remember the vows that you stated before God and man? Many of us repeated words that sounded like this: “I, ___, take thee, ___, to be my wedded husband/wife, to have and to hold, from this day forward, for better, for worse, for richer, for poorer, in sickness and in health, to love and to cherish, till death do us part, according to God’s holy ordinance; and thereto I pledge thee my faith or pledge myself to you.” You ultimately chose to marry someone who possibly grew up differently than you, someone who has his/her own way of thinking and doing things. Just as you chose your spouse, you have the mutual responsibility to choose words that are founded on the love of Christ.
Psalm 19:14 NLV
“Let the words of my mouth and the thoughts of my heart be pleasing in Your eyes, O Lord, my Rock and the One Who saves me.”
Words hold power. What you speak will pave the way of your next steps. When you spoke your wedding vows, you became responsible for considering and loving your spouse as Christ loves the church. You chose to no longer consider and love only yourself. Remember this? “No longer two, but one,” (Matthew 19:6).
How often does an argument arise from insisting on a certain way of doing things, a past hurt, or an insecurity from your childhood? You are onewith this person. You have the responsibility to consider their weaknesses, their strengths, their hopes, their dreams, and their unique design. This responsibility isn’t founded on duty — in other words, it’s not a requirement that can be met by doing the very least you can and still claiming success. Rather, it requires you to deliberately consider how you can love your spouse by doing the very best by them. [ This is a daily choice. Forgiveness is a daily choice. Encouragement is a daily choice. Peace is a daily choice. Love is a daily choice.
Genesis 2:22-24 NLT
‘Then the Lord God made a woman from the rib, and he brought her to the man.“At last!” the man exclaimed. “This one is bone from my bone,and flesh from my flesh!She will be called ‘woman,’because she was taken from ‘man.’” This explains why a man leaves his father and mother and is joined to his wife, and the two are united into one.’
A marriage cemented in mutual love will have a strong foundation in every season of life. When your marriage is cemented in Christ’s love, your focus is no longer on “what can you do for me?” Instead your focus becomes “what can I do for you?” You have now chosen to consider your spouse, and to base your words upon that consideration, keeping Jesus as the moderator of your tone. This way, when conflict arises, you are able to choose words that heal and nurture rather than tear down and destroy.
Proverbs 15:4 AMP
“A soothing tongue [speaking words that build up and encourage] is a tree of life, but a perversive tongue [speaking words that overwhelm and depress] crushes the spirit.
Answer these questions with honesty and talk them out with your spouse over this month. The goal is always growth. Awareness is a key factor in seeing growth. Take what you have learned and then ask God for help. God loves your marriage. God loves you. God wants to see your marriage thrive.
- What does your tone reflect to your spouse? Words of Christ’s love? Christ’s compassion? Christ’s forgiveness? Encouragement? Kindness? Or words of anger? Malice? Resentment? Criticism? Unkindness?
- Mutual love also celebrates each other’s victories. Are you celebrating your spouse and rejoicing in their daily victories?
- What words are you needing from your spouse today?
- What words can you give your spouse today?
Now do it.If you have been in the wrong or if you have been self-centered or self-seeking with your spouse, ask for forgiveness from God and from your spouse. Start fresh today. Speak life today.
Ephesians 5:25-33 MSG
“Husbands, go all out in your love for your wives, exactly as Christ did for the church—a love marked by giving, not getting. Christ’s love makes the church whole. His words evoke her beauty. Everything he does and says is designed to bring the best out of her, dressing her in dazzling white silk, radiant with holiness. And that is how husbands ought to love their wives. They’re really doing themselves a favor—since they’re already “one” in marriage. No one abuses his own body, does he? No, he feeds and pampers it. That’s how Christ treats us, the church, since we are part of his body. And this is why a man leaves father and mother and cherishes his wife. No longer two, they become “one flesh.” This is a huge mystery, and I don’t pretend to understand it all. What is clearest to me is the way Christ treats the church. And this provides a good picture of how each husband is to treat his wife, loving himself in loving her, and how each wife is to honor her husband.”