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Jan 26
2015

Happily Ever After - Staying in Love

Posted by admin2  filed under Staying in Love   0 Comment(s)    Add a Comment  comment-icon.png

Here we are week 2 of 4 and I want to look at STAYING IN LOVE!

 

Last week we discussed that Love was not Chemistry…Chemistry blows up!

 

What does the Bible say Love is? Behavior, Action, Pattern, Habits!

 

You can tell someone you love them but until you show it, they are just words.

 

1 Corinthians 13:4-8a

Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. 5It is not rude, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs. 

6Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth. 7It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres. 8Love never fails.

 

Paul lists 16 Behavior, Action, Pattern, Habits that are necessary if a couple is committed to Staying In Love!

 

  • Patient - Does not pressure
  • Kind - Takes into consideration the feelings of others, uses nice overtones. (Saying yes but meaning No)
  • Does Not Envy - Not bothered if their spouse outshines them.
  • Does Not Boast - Not preoccupied with making yourself look good by putting your spouse down. Not allowing others to cause highlighting in your marriage!!
  • Is Not Proud - We cheer on our spouse.
  • Is Not Rude - This is nothing more than common courtesy. People tend to think that common courtesy goes out the window when we get married. Please and Thank you and excuse me NEVER go out of style and are never outdated.
  • Not Self-Seeking - We place our spouse needs above our own!
  • Not Easily Angered -  We cannot cause our spouses to feel like they need to walk on egg shells. This discourages honesty.
  • Does not keep records of Wrongs - forgive and work toward oneness. Remember your sins are no wore than your spouses. The ones you have acted out and the ones you have thought about acting out but never did.
  • Does not delight in Evil - Maintaining the upper hand - We keep our spouse suppressed because of their mistake.
  • Rejoices in the Truth - It hurts to hear the truth but it needs to be said. The best thing for a person is to be caught in their sin. It allows for everything to come out in the open!
  • Always Protects - Cover your spouse in prayer and do not allow people to speak badly of them.
  • Always Trusts - It is not naive but is full of grace. It is not naive of past failures but is willing to be vulnerable again all for the sake of oneness. When a spouse openly does not trust it causes the other spouse remain in a Sneaky Mode. Not healthy!
  • Always Hopes - It remains in an attitude that it is possible that change is possible.
  • Always Preserves - Not bail at the first sight of trouble! (Jumping ship during a storm)
  • Love Never Fails - It’s tough  - says things that maybe harsh but when they are said in Grace they are appropriate.  

 

Paul says that these 16 items are the Behaviors, Actions, Patterns, Habits of Love.

 

These patterns of behaviors must be present if a couple is going to make it, if they are going to Stay in Love.

 

Here’s the Question?

HOW??

How do we go about it? How do we go about maintaining the Behaviors, Actions, Patterns, Habits of marriage?

 

Solomon Speaks to this in:

Proverbs 14:8

The wisdom of the prudent is to give thought to their ways,

      but the folly of fools is deception.  

 

The prudent are to give thought to their ways - WAYS are the Behaviors, Actions, Patterns, Habits of a person!

 

WAYS - Give you the ability to predict or know the direction of an argument.with your spouse. You know because you have been there done that! 

You know the WAYS (the Behaviors, Actions, Patterns, Habits) of the argument because there has been an establishment of a Behavior, Action, Pattern, Habit. 

 

There is a phrase in the investing world mainly with stocks that states: “Past performance does not guarantee future performance (Gain).” - This is true in the investing world BUT NOT in the world of marriage.

Not in the world of people! The best way to predict or gain insight to a persons behavior is to revisit their past behavior. 

Want to know how you are going to do going forward? Look at how you behaved in the past.

Unless there was a profound change the pattern will remain the same. This is not a curse on you it is a warning and a wake up cal and a glimpse of understanding.

Looking at the second part of the verse in Proverbs 14:8 it talks about a folly of fools is deception!

 

A folly of fools do not pay attention to their own WAYS! (Behaviors, Actions, Patterns, Habits).

A folly of fools do not pay attention to their spouse’s ways!

 

A folly of fools deceive themselves. - Rationalize their own Behaviors, Actions, Patterns, Habits - Their ways!

 

Proverbs 14:15

   15A simple man believes anything,

      but a prudent man gives thought to his steps.

 

Simple = Foolish

 

Foolish person takes things at face value.

 

Wise person pays attention to the Ways (The Behaviors, Actions, Patterns, Habits) of a person. 

Sadly in our culture/church we have convinced ourselves of the idea that we can “promise” our way into a new way of behaving.

 

A foolish person will settle for “If you promise me you will change then that it good enough for me.”

A foolish person says if you promise me that you will not:

  • Hit me
  • Stay drunk
  • Be abusive
  • Be angry
  • Cheat on me
  • Disrespect me

And if you promise to:

  • Love me
  • Respect me
  • Treat me with the 16 principles that Paul lays out

 

If you promise all this, then on your word alone Its all good enough for me!!

People That is a fool! A fool promises and a fool accepts the promise!

 

What happens when they break that promise? Because they are going to! Let me remind you: Marriage is a fallen person joined together with a  fallen person living in a fallen world.

 

This is not just with couples either! I have heard parents do this with their kids! I you behave in the store I buy you something…Promise you will be have….

I don’t have to tell my kids to behave in the store because I have already set an expectation that they will be punished if they don’t. No need for bribery!

People who are dating do this promise thing! “They promised to change when we get married!” HELLO!!!! If they are not willing to change now, do you really think they are going to when you get married?

People love to explain away the “WAYS” of the loved ones! They justify their sin! That’s why the world is in the mess that it is in!!

 

Well Should we get divorced? Divorce is not a one shoe fits all!

 

I say do what Solomon says: Give thought to the persons WAYS Behaviors, Actions, Patterns, Habits!

Are you in an abusive behavior? - Get help! Get out! Start with a separation and counseling then if it continues….I am a firm believer that God is hates divorce but I also believe that He is a loving God and does not want you in an abusive relationship either!

Do you keep marring JERKS? This is a pattern of behavior in and of itself! Start by looking inward. You attract those whom you are like! - Just food for thought!

Are you living with a run-around-Sue? Get help! Get out! Start with a separation and counseling then if it continues…

 

In all of theses situations use divorce as a last resort. I always counsel people that yes divorce is an option but as a last resort if reconciliation cannot happen.

People do not head Solomon’s wisdom and they try to minimize their problems:

I married the wrong person

I married an alcoholic

I married an abuser

All of these maybe true but there had to have been some past issue that led them to their actions. There must have been some “WAYS” in there past that they do not know how to deal with and that needs to be addressed!

Doesn’t Love always TRUST? Yes But:

There is a difference between I believe you can change and I believe you have changed!

Solomon says that it is a fool who believes someone has changed because they promised to!

God can make all things new, not because we promised to!

God wants to establish new “Ways” - Behaviors, Actions, Patterns, Habits - in us!

 

Staying in Love is NOT promising to….

Staying in Love is acting out the 16 actions Paul outlines for us in 1Corinthians 13.

Point of tension:

    There are spouses that are not willing to let there spouse change!

This is a good example of pouring gas on a fire that you are trying to extinguish!

 

How to deal with your WAYS and work on Staying in Love:

 

1 - Deal with your own stuff

    Marriage will NOT solve your problems, as a matter of fact the general consensus is that whatever problems you have as a single person will be enhanced when married!

 

2 - Expect your spouse to do the Same!

    Nothing worse than a spouse trying to get their loved one to fulfill a role that they are not intended to fill!

        Wives you are not his mother

        Husbands you are not Her father

SO STOP TRYING TO FILL THOSE ROLES!!

You are not meant for that role so you are not going to a good job at it!! You will kill your marriage!

 

Look at your spouse and say: I love you But I am not your mother/father I cannot and will not fill the role! I will be here for you as you work through this WAY in your life but I will do it as your spouse!

 

3 - To those of you that are single - This is a little uncomfortable but Avoid Living together!

  • Not a path to Happily ever after
  • Statistics of people who Live together and are sexually active before marriage are not pleasing. The divorce rate is higher….Not impossible but marriage is hard to begin with, why add the strain of starting off the wrong way.

If you want to Stay in Love and walk on a path to a happily ever after and receive God’s Blessing then commit to yourself and God to remain morally pure before marriage!


 
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