Phone: 701.636.5701
204 Caledonia Avenue East, Hillsboro, ND

Sr Pastor Joe Johnson 701.430.3787 

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This time of quarantine can be challenging for relationships. In today’s sermon, Amanda and I presented some tools we have found helpful in our marriage. These tools can be helpful not only in marriages but any relationship. I said I would post these ideas. Here they are…

 

Do 70% of the work!

If you feel like you are contributing about 70% of the work in a relationship, you are probably doing the right amount of work. Chances are, you are not doing as much as you think, and your significant other is probably doing more than you realize.

Communicate the movie you want to watch!

A few years ago, Amanda and I were deciding what movie we wanted to watch. I suggested a movie I thought she would want to see. Amanda suggested a movie she thought I wanted to see. In the end, we watched a move neither of us wanted to see. The point here is, be clear about what you want. Whether that has to do with movies, restaurants, intimacy, space, or recreation.

Enjoy the movie!

When we have been clear about what we want, and it differs from our spouse, one person is not going to get what they want. In the scenario that you are the one who honors what you spouse wants, it’s important to enjoy what your partner wants to do. If you go to the movie your spouse wants to see, it doesn’t do your relationship any good to have a bad attitude about it.

Assume the best!

If your spouse does or says something that is upsetting, start with the assumption that your spouse is not trying to intentionally hurt you. Communicat with your spouse what you are feeling and thinking. Martin Luther’s explanation of the 8th commandment says we should speak well of others and explain their actions in the kindest way.    

Have direct communication!

“If another sins against you, go and point out the fault when the two of you are alone.” Matthew 18:15

If your spouse does something to upset you, tell them. All too often we tell friends of other people about what is not working in our relationships but fail to tell the one who is actually in the relationship. If you are not able to reconcile, invite and 3rd party into the conversation. This 3rd party could include a theorpist, counselor, life-coach or pastor.

Communicate in private!

“If another sins against you, go and point out the fault when the two of you are alone.” Matthew 18:15

There is a time and a place to address issues and problems in a marriage. I’m not suggesting that we keep our problems a “secret”. In fact, this message is exactly the opposite. I’m encouraging us to name and address our problems and not pretend they don’t exist.

Know triggers!

Pay attention to the things that trigger your anxiety and discomfort. Pay attention to what triggers your spouse's anxiety and discomfort. 

Repeat back what you are hearing!

Be an intentional listener. Listen to your spouse and repeat back what you are hearing by saying,

          “What I’m hearing you say is…”

          “What I hear is important to you is…”

 

I hope you find this helpful!

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