Conflicts happen in the happiest homes because iron sharpens iron and sometimes sparks fly.
And in many marriages husbands and wives are opposites which more easily predispose them to conflict when they seek their own way above the greater good of their union.
But when handled with love and respect differences actually help partners grow towards God as they realize their need for grace to overcome and live in harmony and mutual submission with each other.
My Michael and I — while rock solid alike in our commitment and love of Christ, our love of each other and our desire to finally be successful in marriage — are different in many ways. And if we are not careful with our love those differences can and have lead to fire-y disagreements.
But we have found that conflict resolved breeds intimacy when two hearts keep looking up together. And that strengthens the marital bond. Jesus is the Prince of Peace and God wants us to live peacefully together in unity. And no matter if your marriage is young or old, you can at any given moment decide to obey God more fully.
Let it be your ambition to live at peace with all men and to achieve holiness “without which no man shall see the Lord”. Be careful that none of you fails to respond to the grace which God gives, for if he does there can very easily spring up in him a bitter spirit which is not only bad in itself but can also poison the lives of many others. Hebrews 12:14-15
Here are 10 proven tips that can help you and your husband resolve conflicts in your marriage and create lifelong bliss together.
1.>>Ask God to reveal to you the error of your ways. Then repent asking for grace to hop over the pit you slip into from time to time. Change in the human heart is absolutely possible when you surrender to God, admit you are helpless and need Him to work these changes in you. However, you must cooperate. God will not wave a magic wand and poof…perfect wife or husband.
2. >>Woman up and take responsibility for your wrongs without blaming your spouse. Or shaming him. It takes two to tango. Yet it takes only one to stop a fight. So be the one. Call a time out with mutually-agreed upon boundaries and cool off. Go to separate corners and pray with a heart that may still feel angry but is willing to surrender — not in defeat, but victory. For when you choose to rise above the petty differences that momentarily put you at odds you prove that you are more than a conqueror.
3. >>Humble your heart and pursue your spouse. Be the first to ask forgiveness. If your offer is rejected, go back to God and try a again later. If your heartfelt offer is still rejected then that is your partner’s issue and only they can work with God to resolve any deep-seated sinful brokenness. Pray against whatever may be holding them hostage such as pride or hurt.
4. >>Accept that you cannot change your spouse so stop trying and let them be. There are certain differences that spouses must receive with grace and overlook with love. But when at an impasse with your mate trust God and let go of controlling. Take your wounded heart to the One who truly and unconditionally loves you — your bad and your good — and let Him fix you. And most often as you get better your marriage follows. Be the change that you would like to see in your marriage.
5.>>Confront with grace when needed. Sometimes a spouse must choose to lovingly and graciously be brave and confront their mate about how their words and actions hurt them and the marriage. But do so only after you have prayed and your heart is resting in Father’s. Then share your words gently, but always be direct. Choose to have no fear even if you have experienced increased anger from your mate when their poor behaviors are spotlighted.
6. >>Focus on the current issue between you. Don’t rehash old disagreements. If a past conflict has been resolved and forgiven then forget about it. Bringing up a laundry list of complaints each time you find yourself at odds with your man will impede progress in your marriage and you will ride a miserable merry-go-round of conflict that will make you sick.
7. >>Don’t be a mind reader. Only God knows the real reasons behind what you or your spouse says or does. So never assume. And try to ascribe to your spouse’s heart the best and highest motives. Giving them the benefit of the doubt and looking on the better side of things helps even if circumstances ultimately prove it false. Since you are not omniscient, ask firm yet respectful questions to help determine what is going on.
8. >>Dig deep. The core of the current conflict often has long, sticky roots reaching back to childhood where you may have first encountered dysfunction and pain. Yet a broken past like ours does not make you a prisoners of the past. Forgive those who hurt you earlier whether a parent or priest, friend or ex. Let go and forget what haunts you. You have a new and better life now. Don’t ruin it by continuing to live and react in pain and fear from your past.
9.>>Keep a good list. Determine to write out all that is best about your husband when your heart is full of love. Check your list — I keep mine in my iPhone — when you feel your blood beginning to boil. Reminding yourself of all that you love about your precious man can soften your heart making it easier to see clearly that this too shall pass.
10.>>My Michael’s last resort tip. Super soakers at 20 paces!!
Need I say more??
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