Tag Archives: Marriage Guidance

Marriage Advice … for All

Whoever belittles his neighbor lacks sense, but a man of understanding remains silent.
Proverbs 11:12, ESV

Today happens to be my ninth wedding anniversary.

Any good husband will tell you there is a time when you should just keep your mouth shut and listen to your wife.

Honestly, it is advice that can go both ways. Neither partner should be so prideful as to assume you know everything better than the other. Mutual communication benefits both!

Conversely, it is unwise to speak down to the other. Belittling – literally causing someone’s ideas and character to seem small and meaningless – only creates pain and bitterness. It is no longer a partnership but a tyranny, and even more confusing when both are guilty of this. Whoever belittles attempts to control the other, and this means slavery and problems.

It is best to work together and be willing to hear each other out.

And, yes, I may be talking about married couples, but this advice applies to any relationship, even with strangers.

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Blessed

Proverbs 31:10, 28 

Who can find such a virtuous woman? For her price is far above rubies….
Her children arise up, and call her blessed; her husband also, and he praiseth her.

This last chapter of Proverbs has provided the male contributors to Proverbial Thought with several opportunities to reflect on the blessing of a good wife. Perhaps that is something all husbands should do more frequently. Perhaps by taking stock more often husbands would be prompted to praise their marriage partners instead of taking them for granted.

This challenge applies to our children too. How often do children fall into the same trap as their father and fail to appreciate just how blessed they are by their mother? This does saddle fathers with additional responsibility. If children see their father taking their mother for granted then it seems inevitable that they will fail to truly value the blessings they receive from their mother.

Marilyn and Reuben copySo here in my final entry as a contributor to Proverbial Thought I want to take the opportunity to thank my wife Marilyn. It is difficult to adequately express my gratitude. In two months we will celebrate our thirty-fifth wedding anniversary. As I look back on those thirty-five years I know that God has blessed me beyond anything I have ever deserved in a wife, and I thank Him for what I consider to be an arranged marriage. When God chose us for each other He knew what He was doing. He always does.

Some Pharisees came to him to test him. They asked, “Is it lawful for a man to divorce his wife for any and every reason?”

 “Haven’t you read,” he replied, “that at the beginning the Creator ‘made them male and female,’ and said, ‘For this reason a man will leave his father and mother and be united to his wife, and the two will become one flesh’? So they are no longer two, but one flesh. Therefore what God has joined together, let no one separate.” (Matthew 19: 3-6 NIV)


Marriage Guidance

Proverbs 21:9 

It is better to dwell in a corner of the housetop, than with a brawling woman in a wide house.
It’s better to live alone in the corner of an attic than with a quarrelsome wife in a lovely home. (NLT)

I have been married for thirty-four years and I am pleased to report that my wife is neither a brawler, nor quarrelsome. I can’t imagine what it must be like to be in such a marriage, and I can’t believe that a marriage would survive for very long if either marriage partner behaved in such a way. But I can understand that it would be preferable to live alone in the smallest and dirtiest of places, rather than share the most beautiful of homes with a contentious marriage partner.

While this proverb points the finger at a woman, it could just as easily be a man. Regardless of whether it is husband or wife whose behavior in their relationship is unacceptable, the fact remains that it generally takes two to tango! Where there are problems in a relationship both partners may need to examine their behavior and consider whether they have played a part in provoking such an extreme reaction.

IMG_4624This weekend I spent two days camping in a field in the south of England with 1,000 other men while attending an event arranged by Christian Vision for Men (CVM) called The Gathering. There was only one female speaker, a lady called Tania Bright-Cook. The fact that Tania is a very special lady was evident in the number of men who attended her seminar, which was entitled ‘What Women Wish Men Would Do.’ One aim of the seminar was to enlighten menfolk, thereby reducing the possibility of marital tension. Here are some of the points Tania raised:

  • Admit vulnerability.
  • Keep promises.
  • Rate the art of loving deeply.
  • Be emotionally honest.
  • Model discipleship.
  • Be affirming.

The question to all of us is what could we be doing differently or better in our relationships with our husbands, wives, children, friends, etc.? Or would we rather be holed up in a small corner of the attic because a relationship is not working?


Blessed

Proverbs 31:10, 28 

Who can find such a virtuous woman? For her price is far above rubies….
Her children arise up, and call her blessed; her husband also, and he praiseth her.

This last chapter of Proverbs has provided the male contributors to Proverbial Thought with several opportunities to reflect on the blessing of a good wife. Perhaps that is something all husbands should do more frequently. Perhaps by taking stock more often husbands would be prompted to praise their marriage partners instead of taking them for granted.

This challenge applies to our children too. How often do children fall into the same trap as their father and fail to appreciate just how blessed they are by their mother? This does saddle fathers with additional responsibility. If children see their father taking their mother for granted then it seems inevitable that they will fail to truly value the blessings they receive from their mother.

Marilyn and Reuben copySo here in my final entry as a contributor to Proverbial Thought I want to take the opportunity to thank my wife Marilyn. It is difficult to adequately express my gratitude. In two months we will celebrate our thirty-fifth wedding anniversary. As I look back on those thirty-five years I know that God has blessed me beyond anything I have ever deserved in a wife, and I thank Him for what I consider to be an arranged marriage. When God chose us for each other He knew what He was doing. He always does.

Some Pharisees came to him to test him. They asked, “Is it lawful for a man to divorce his wife for any and every reason?”

 “Haven’t you read,” he replied, “that at the beginning the Creator ‘made them male and female,’ and said, ‘For this reason a man will leave his father and mother and be united to his wife, and the two will become one flesh’? So they are no longer two, but one flesh. Therefore what God has joined together, let no one separate.” (Matthew 19: 3-6 NIV)


Marriage Guidance

Proverbs 21:9 

It is better to dwell in a corner of the housetop, than with a brawling woman in a wide house.
It’s better to live alone in the corner of an attic than with a quarrelsome wife in a lovely home. (NLT)

I have been married for thirty-four years and I am pleased to report that my wife is neither a brawler, nor quarrelsome. I can’t imagine what it must be like to be in such a marriage, and I can’t believe that a marriage would survive for very long if either marriage partner behaved in such a way. But I can understand that it would be preferable to live alone in the smallest and dirtiest of places, rather than share the most beautiful of homes with a contentious marriage partner.

While this proverb points the finger at a woman, it could just as easily be a man. Regardless of whether it is husband or wife whose behavior in their relationship is unacceptable, the fact remains that it generally takes two to tango! Where there are problems in a relationship both partners may need to examine their behavior and consider whether they have played a part in provoking such an extreme reaction.

IMG_4624This weekend I spent two days camping in a field in the south of England with 1,000 other men while attending an event arranged by Christian Vision for Men (CVM) called The Gathering. There was only one female speaker, a lady called Tania Bright-Cook. The fact that Tania is a very special lady was evident in the number of men who attended her seminar, which was entitled ‘What Women Wish Men Would Do.’ One aim of the seminar was to enlighten menfolk, thereby reducing the possibility of marital tension. Here are some of the points Tania raised:

  • Admit vulnerability.
  • Keep promises.
  • Rate the art of loving deeply.
  • Be emotionally honest.
  • Model discipleship.
  • Be affirming.

The question to all of us is what could we be doing differently or better in our relationships with our husbands, wives, children, friends, etc.? Or would we rather be holed up in a small corner of the attic because a relationship is not working?