Christlife Posture: Loving Like Jesus

Topic: Getting Along with My Spouse

Suggested Approach: Choose 1 thing from each of the three boxes

OR Choose 1 from Media or Reflection + 1 from Scripture 

Media Excursions (Watch/read/listen and be ready to discuss Q's)

Photograph

  •  A Married Couple and Portrait Of A Married Couple (Sir Anthony van Dyck) These two portraits of married couples are by the same artist.  What do you notice as you compare the paintings? Does one couple look like they get along better than the other? Why? What would a portrait of you and your spouse show? 

Video Clip

  • Communication in Marriage (Funny) (Christian Marriage Teaching - Art of Marriage) Just enjoy this for a laugh. If you are struggling to get along with your spouse you probably need a laugh!  

  • Romantically Challenged (Skit Guys) Do you and your spouse struggle with the "fix it" vs. "just listen" issue? How can you serve each other better there?  What does it mean to consider how to bless your spouse each day? 

Song

  • Let Love Win (Andrew Ripp) Which sentiments in this song can you relate to? Which ones do you wish you could relate to? What do you think it means to "let love win"?

  • Broken Together (Casting Crowns) How could healing come from being "broken together"? What lyrics or truths stand out to you from this song? 

Articles 

  •  If Opposites Attract, How Can We Get Along?  (Patricia Crane Ennis LMSW) What are the "opposite" things that attracted you to your spouse? Which of the three suggestions is most helpful for you? 

  • 6 Tips to Get Along With Your Spouse that Work (Robert Chen) Which of the three reasons for reading this article best described you? Would you say you struggle more with respecting, appreciating, or admiring your spouse? What advice does the author give that might help you with respecting, appreciating or admiring your spouse?

  • Your Husband Can't Make You Happy (Sheila Wray Gregoire)  Do you agree with this author's perspective on marriage? What marriage story was most helpful for you to read?

Reflection Options  

Journal  (Reflect on one or more of these questions)

  • Write a list of the commonly occurring disagreements, stress points or disappointments you face in your marriage.  Look for underlying patterns.  Rank them in order of importance.  Lift them up to the Lord and ask him to help you gain a different perspective in the areas where you struggle to get along with your spouse. 

  • What are the things that attracted you to your spouse in the first place?  What are the things that keep you from appreciating those things now about your spouse?  Think of ways to regularly ponder on the positives in your relationship/spouse and spend time thanking God for them. 

  • Ask God to reveal to you how your attitude, actions, or words are contributing to tension in your marriage.  Which things might you need to work on or ask forgiveness for? 

Quote Interaction (Agree, disagree or otherwise engage with the quote/quotes)

  • The biblical union of two people into one flesh did not involve the annihilation of personal identity. The unity of marriage is not to be monistic but a unity in duality.  (R. C. Sproul)

  • When I have learnt to love God better than my earthly dearest, I shall love my earthly dearest better than I do now. (C. S. Lewis) 

  • To have peace and love in a marriage is a gift that is next to the knowledge of the gospel. (Martin Luther) 

  • [Regarding marriage:] First, he must choose his love, and then he must love his choice. (A Puritan Golden Treasury) 

Reading and reflection on Shaping The Journey of Emerging Adults

  • Read "The Development of Emerging Adults" (pp. 26-29).  Do you relate more, internally, with the description of the pre-adult, provisional adult or functional adult stage? What do you think your spouse relates most to? How does your perception of your stage of development affect the way you relate to your spouse?

  • Read about Lisette and Roger's story in "The Landscape of Emerging Adults" (pp. 29-33--note the section on "Instability").  What kinds of instability do you experience? How does that instability produce tension in your marriage? How have you navigated that tension? 

  • Read "Trusting God's Self-Portrait" (pp. 173-176).  What tension exists in your marriage with regard to sex? How strong is your and your spouse's vision for biblical sexuality? Do you have different understandings of the meaning or purpose of sex in your relationship? What conversations do you need to initiate around that? 

 Explore Scripture

Meditate on one or more of the following passages. Always look them up in context.  Take some time to really explore the verse in relation to this topic.  Look for insights regarding marriage or regarding getting along well with others. Make a note of what you discover to share later.  See "Learn More About Ways to Study Scripture" below for help in getting the most out of the verse.

  • Psalm 37:4

  • Proverbs 15:1

  • Proverbs 17:1, 9, 14, 19, 27

  • Proverbs 18:2

  • Ecclesiastes 4:12

  • Matthew 5:9

  • Matthew 7:3 

  • Matthew 19:4-6

  • Mark 10:9

  • 1 Corinthians 1:10

  • I Corinthians 13:4-8

  • Ephesians 4:2-3

  • Ephesians 4:26-27

  • Ephesians 4:29

  • Ephesians 5:21

  • Colossians 3:18-19

  • I Peter 4:8

  • James 1:19-20

  • James 3:13-16