Saturday, February 10, 2018

Godly Individuals can Create Godly Marriages

Dr. H. Wallas Goddard, in his book “Drawing Heaven Into Your Marriage” tells us that While most people assume that all marriages have discontent and must be processed and dealt with in non-destructive ways for the relationship to work, he believes “that the key to a healthy relationship is being a healthy, saintly, God-seeking person – to be born again – to be a new creature in Christ.” He continues, “When we are more godly, fewer things bother us. And when we run into problems, we are more likely to process them in helpful ways” (Goddard, 2009).
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To me this means bringing God into your marriage. Striving to be more godly we should have charity towards our partners. Instead of being accusative and frustrated we can choose to reconcile our differences with kindness. Instead of saying “Why would you do that! What’s wrong with you!” We can say “That is a different choice that I would make in that situation. Can you tell me your thought process in making that decision?” Of course, this needs to be said humbly with real interest because any comment can be perceived as criticism if it is given with bad body language and the wrong tones of voice.
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Another thing Dr. Goddard points out is that there is a “quirk” in human thinking. This quirk is that we interpret the behavior of others based on their character or what we know of them. We fail to think about the circumstances of the choice. Yet, when we interpret our own behavior, we allow for the circumstances and our own thought processes to justify our behaviors. That is why it is important to seek to understand before we judge or give criticism.

To do this, Goddard suggests switching our mindset from questions like:
  • Why are you doing this to me?
  • What’s wrong with you?
  • Why can’t you get why this is important to me?
To questions like:
  • How can I understand why this is important to my partner?
  • What is my partner really trying to tell me?
  • How can I understand her/his pain?
  • Can God help me think past my own self so that I can better understand my spouse?
  • How does God see my partner?
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John Gottman says, "The key to reinvigorating fondness and admiration is to get in the habit of scanning for qualities and actions that you can appreciate. And then, let your partner know what you've observed and are grateful for" (Gottman, 2015).

God has the power to do anything He wants and we can ask for his assistance in making our own lives and marriages better.

Goddard, H. (2009). “Drawing Heaven into Your Marriage: Eternal Doctrines that Change Relationships”. Joymap Publishing. 3933 W. 9850 N Ceder Hills, Utah, USA.

Gottman, J., and Silver, N. (1995, 2015). The Seven Principles for Making Marriage Work: A Practical Guide from the Country’s Foremost Relationship Expert. Harmony Books Penguin Random House Company, New York.

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