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Don’t Mess Around!

By: Donna Martin

The music was beautiful, the scenery was amazing, and the acting was superb.  It was a great production; however, as we were leaving the theater I overheard one lady say, “I don’t think it could have been more depressing.”  We have seen the plot in movies and plays many times - an unfulfilled housewife, a busy husband trying to care for the family, a chance meeting, and an adulterous encounter.  Although, it was a great production, it was a depressing plot.  But the most depressing thing about it to me was not the play, but that this plot is played out in real life over and over.  And another depressing thought was that many people think the wife’s affair was permissible. 

Marriage is not always romance, exciting adventures, and candlelight dinners. If it was, how would the laundry and house work ever get done?  How would the bills get paid?  Who would care for the children?  Marriage is not about two selfish people pursuing their dreams at the expense of the rest of the family.  A strong marriage develops when two selfish people learn to put the needs of their spouse before their own needs.  A strong marriage develops when two imperfect people work together to help each other  grow into the person God intended for them to be.

If you find yourself dreaming about a life that might have been, if you find yourself noticing more faults in your mate than attributes, if you start to imagine that life would be better with the handsome guy at the office who sometimes flirts with you or the pretty young woman who seems so carefree, then pinch yourself back into reality.  That handsome man and beautiful woman are imperfect, selfish people just like your spouse.  Over time, their faults will outweigh their attributes and you will be right back in the same situation.

Instead of focusing on the bad things about your marriage, try focusing on what is good.  List the qualities in your spouse that attracted you to him in the first place.  Plan a night out; talk to each other about dreams and goals.  Do something to spice up your relationship. Go back and reenact your first date. Visit one of your favorite places that brings back good memories.  Make date night a priority.   If you feel neglected or like your marriage is in a rut, set a time to talk and express your concerns in a loving way to your spouse.

 If you are a follower of Christ, your marriage is one of the best places to be a witness for Christ.  In his book Sacred Marriage, Gary Thomas says, “In a God-centered view (of marriage); we preserve our marriage because it brings glory to God and points a sinful world to a reconciling Creator.”  God loved us so much that he gave His Son, Jesus, so that we can be reconciled to Him.  When we put Christ first in our marriages, then our goal in marriage will be to proclaim the reconciliation of God to a lost world.  Having this God-centered view of marriage is the first step in preserving our marriage and making it last a lifetime.

The Martins currently present “Happy Together” Marriage Enrichment Events for churches and organizations.  To schedule an event call Michael at 940-735-1515. They are certified “Prepare/Enrich” Facilitators and are available to work with couples on an individual basis using the “Prepare/Enrich Assessment.”  They publish a weekly “Happy Together” Blog about family and marriage issues.  You can order copies of their new books Dancing With Death and 366 Tidbits We Have Learned in 14,610 Days of Marriage, read, and subscribe to their “Happy Together” Blog by logging onto the Martin’s website at

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