Growing up as a kid, Smokey the Bear was one of the most prominent commercials being broadcasted. Especially in California. For those of you who don’t know Smokey, he was famous for his line, “Only YOU can be prevent wildfires.” Smokey was advocating that 9 out of 10 wildfires could be avoided. How? Simply by people taking precaution. Most wildfires were breaking out due to careless acts (campfires being left unattended, burning debris, discarded cigarettes, etc). Smokey was telling us that refraining from carelessness would easily prevent most wildfire disasters from breaking out.
Imagine how true this could be for marriage!
Think about it. Most marital issues break out due to the carelessness of one or both spouses. Cheating, lying, arguments, bitterness, anger, financial instability — these are all fires that break out due to carelessness! What if you and your spouse both treated your marriage with extra care? Wouldn’t you be able to avoid most of the issues that are burning and deteriorating your marriage? Absolutely!
If you and your spouse take the extra precaution — your marriage would thrive like you want it to!
From this point on remember: Only YOU and YOUR SPOUSE can prevent marital fires.
What are you doing to keep fires from breaking out in your marriage?
My 15 month old son has a new habit. Every time he wants to divert your attention to something, he sticks his little index finger out and points exactly where he wants you to look. It should come as no surprise that he often likes to point at people. No shame, no guilt. But, of course he doesn’t have any shame or guilt. He still doesn’t know that it’s rude to point at people.
As adults, we understand that it’s rude to point our finger at other people (at least in American culture). Why? Because pointing usually indicates that you’re talking about the person. In most cases if the person catches you pointing at them, they’ll perceive that you’re talking about them negatively.
Do you know where “pointing the finger” is especially common?
When things go wrong in marriage, husband and wife both love to “point the finger” at each other. The goal is to take “take the attention off of myself and divert it to my spouse,” or “let me put all the blame on you.”
Are you guilty of this?
Look at what Jesus has to say:
Why do you see the speck that is in your brother’s eye, but do not notice the log that is in your own eye? 4 Or how can you say to your brother, ‘Let me take the speck out of your eye,’ when there is the log in your own eye? 5 You hypocrite, first take the log out of your own eye, and then you will see clearly to take the speck out of your brother’s eye. – Matthew 7:3-5 ESV
Have you considered that you’re the problem or at least part of the problem in your marriage? Before you go and “point the finger,” ensure that you’ve fixed yourself first.
I know. I get it. Sometimes it can be hard to forgive your spouse. Really hard.
But is that any excuse to hold on to grudges? Absolutely not!
I know how you feel all too well. Whatever your spouse did to hurt you, upset you or irritate you is just flat out unforgivable. They don’t deserve your mercy. You’d rather continue to hold your partner’s wrong over his/her head and continuously remind your spouse how stupid and messed up he/she is.
But what is that really doing for you?
Don’t you know that holding a grudge is more damaging to you than it is to your spouse? When you hold onto grudges, you keep yourself in a negative state of mind, because you constantly think about what your spouse did. When you’re in this type of mind frame, you’re unable to live your life normally.
I know you’ve been there before.
Do yourself a favor and stop holding a grudge against your spouse. Forgive your spouse and release yourself from the bondage. Lacking the ability to forgive will only keep you weak. Furthermore, it will destroy your marriage.
Can you find the strength, courage and mercy to forgive your spouse? When is it the hardest to forgive your spouse? Is there ever a time when your spouse absolutely should not be forgiven?
I want to read your input. Leave a comment below!
I’m officially convinced that marriages from the 80’s and back had it much easier than marriages of today. Sure, they had their issues — but nothing in comparison to what occurs now. Marriages today have way too many distractions. You know what one of the biggest distractions is?
Don’t believe me?
Practically anywhere you go, you’ll see couples (especially under 40 years old) barely interacting with each other. Instead, they’re interacting with social media. Restaurants, parks, malls, beaches, home — anywhere a couple goes to hang out or go on a date — you’ll surely find at least a few of them disengaged with each other and hyper-engaged with social media.
Wake-up call people:
You’re not married to social media. You’re married to your spouse.
It’s time to stop giving so much time to social media and start giving that time to your spouse. Your partner deserves your time, not social media. Think of the things you could be doing with your spouse, instead of being on social media 24/7:
- Making each other laugh
- Making out/sex (not in public of course)!
- Creating something together
- Planning your future
- Playing games
- The list is practically endless…
Please, don’t act like you’re married to social media (by giving it all your time). Instead, engage with the person you’re really married to (your spouse)!
Challenge: The next time you and your spouse are together, try to resist the urge to get on social media. Connect with your spouse instead!
Is too much social media a challenge in your marriage? What are some other ways to resist using social media too much? Drop your thoughts in the comment section below!