Today we continue working our way through the Love Dare. First off, I would like to know how you ladies are doing. Are you doing the dares each week? How is your husband responding? How are the dares changing your own heart? Share your thoughts with us!
"If a house is divided against itself, that house will not be able to stand." Mark 3:25
Like it or not, conflict in marriage is simply inevitable. When we marry we are joining two completely different hearts, minds, fears, hopes, thoughts, likes, dislikes, histories, families, and backgrounds. That is a lot to put together and expect perfection. Even those with the closest and strongest of relationships, will at some point disagree on something.
Life happens. We have health issues, money problems, in-law feuds, the stress of work, and so many other things that pull on us. These things can all test us and if we are not careful, can bring us down. They can make us moody, testy with those we love.
But love steps in and changes things. Love reminds you that your marriage is too valuable to allow it to self-destruct and that your love for your spouse is more important than whatever you are fighting about.
Married couples who learn to work through the conflict tend to be closer, more trusting, more intimate, and enjoy a much deeper connection afterwards.
So we know that conflict will come. We know that those who deal with conflict the right way and fight fair are stronger. But how do we do that?
The Love Dare tells us to set boundaries. We need to have "we" boundaries and "I" boundaries.
- "We" will never mention divorce. Ever.
- "We" will not bring up old, unrelated items from the past.
- "We" will not fight in public or in front of our children.
- "We" will call a "time-out" if conflict escalates to a damaging level.
- "We" will never touch one another in a harmful way.
- "We" will never go to bed angry with one another.
- Failure is not an option. Whatever it takes, "we" will work this out.
- "I" will listen first before speaking. James 1:19
- "I" will deal with my own issues up front. Matthew 7:3
- "I" will speak gently and keep my voice down. Proverbs 15:1
Remember love is not a fight, but is worth fighting for.
Talk with your spouse about establishing healthy rules of engagement. If your mate is not ready for this, then write out your own personal rules to "fight" by. Resolve to abide by them when the next disagreement occurs.