Thursday, March 3, 2022

Marriage: Vacate, or Renovate?

Thursday, March 3, 2022 Submitted by Donnie O'Fallon

Love is patient and kind; love does not envy or boast; it is not arrogant or rude. It does not insist on its own way; it is not irritable or resentful; it does not rejoice at wrongdoing, but rejoices with the truth. Love bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things. 1 Corinthians 13:4-7

 Marriage: Vacate, or Renovate? 

When Marsha and I came to Weatherford sixteen years ago, the Lord allowed us to have a lovely home in the Saddle Club area. As Adam grew and his friends and our family would come into our home, we realized we needed to expand the footprint of our home to accommodate our needs. After a couple years, we began a renovation to convert attic space. We discovered several things about this renovation project while continuing to live in our home. One, it cost more than we calculated; two, it took longer than we anticipated it would; three, it was quite messier than we ever imagined; but the end product was worth it. We were very pleased.

In every phase of life and especially in marriage, changes occur. There are periods of adjustments with each phase. In Marriages and relationships, you run into difficulties, and you must decide what you will do - “Vacate or Renovate?” We live in a throwaway society today. So many say, “life is too short; just vacate the marriage and look for a better mate.” But God, who is the architect of marriage, says there is a better choice. Renovating a relationship is costly, its messy, time consuming but in the end, it’s worth it. 

As Marsha and I move into the Fall Season or phase of our marriage and ministry, we’re needfully making some renovations to our relationship. Philippians 2:3 -5 says, “Do nothing from selfishness or empty conceit, but with humility of mind regard one another as more important than yourselves; do not merely look out for your own personal interests, but also for the interests of others. Have this attitude in yourselves which was also in Christ Jesus.” That is what every woman wants. Guys, what your wife needs more than anything else, is LOVE and SECURITY. Find ways to be creative in achieving those.

As a man, there are several things I desire from Marsha in all our togetherness these days as we move toward and into retirement. The first is ADMIRATION and APPRECIATION, men need that. I’m not going to tell how to achieve that, but you need to find a way to do so ladies. The second is RESPECT him and his role as leader in your home. You don’t have to resist every decision he makes. Third, do not be HISTORICAL, meaning don’t continually bring up past failures and mistakes. Believe me we know when, where, and how we mess-up! Do not make him a prisoner of the past but move forward in this new phase of your relationship. Forth, stop “MAJORING on the MINORS.” Make sure the battle is worth fighting.

Unfortunately, few marriages can be classified as truly happy these days. Isn’t it sad to think you spend the majority of the years you have here on earth involved in an unhappy or mediocre relationship? I spoke to a man not long ago asking me some questions about marriage. I answered his questions and then asked him this question about his marriage. “How would you describe your marriage”? He stated, “Oh, about average.” My response to him, “Average is the best of the worst and the worst of the best, so which is it?”

God means for us to do more than just endure marriage - He wants us to enjoy marriage. I am finding there is no greater way to enjoy your marriage than to concentrate on meeting the very real needs of the mate that God has given you. Robert Browning penned these words and they are becoming dearer to me day by day: Grow old along with me, the best is yet to be! The last of life for which the first was made: Our times are in His hand, who saith “A whole I planned, Youth shows but half; trust God: see all, nor be afraid!”

PRAYER: “Lord let me not just talk the talk - unable me to walk the walk. And thank you for the help mate you’ve given to me to walk through life together and to serve YOU by serving others, Amen."

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