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One of the most basic structural requirements of a house is the roof. Its materials range from banana leaves to architectural shingles. It protects its occupants from rain, wind, snow, and sunlight. Your house must have a functioning roof in order to be a house. Likewise, your marriage relationship must have a functioning roof in order to survive as a home. Today, learn three reasons you need a roof in your marriage
I Peter 3: 8-12
1. Your Marriage Needs Protection (1.57 minutes)
The intent of a roof is to protect even though the things it may be protecting from may not be happening at the time. It is designed to protect from potential weather hazards.
The covenant of marriage provides a legitimate place to meet each others physical/ emotional needs. If these needs are being met, you have no need to look anywhere else. When marriage is new, this is easy to do, but as the months and the years pass it can become more like work. This is when your wedding vows take effect, when the covenant of marriage really becomes meaningful. This is when your husband doesn’t seem like prince charming anymore, and your wife doesn’t look like snow white. Also, this is when the fairy tale ends and the grind of real life begins.
You must therefore prepare your relationship for problems that you don’t see right now. Just like a roof is installed when it is not raining, but it is made to protect from rain. You have to take steps to prepare your marriage for things that could happen.
The following are my top seven problems that could happen to your marriage, and ways you can prevent them: (4.58 minutes)
By planning in advance for potential problems of infidelity, you can prevent them from tearing your marriage apart. You can go out of your way to meet the emotional needs of your wife by giving her attention and doing and sayings things that make her feel special and appreciated. Likewise, you can go out of your way to meet the physical needs of your husband by giving him the attention that he desires and needs from you. By meeting these needs within the covenant of marriage, you eliminate the human tendency to find them elsewhere. In doing this you put a protective roof over your relationship.
Marriage is the most intimate relationship on the planet. You know each other in ways that are hidden from everyone else in the circle of people in your life. It is in this aspect of marriage that addiction can be identified and prevented. In completely sharing your lives with one another, you add a layer of accountability within the marriage covenant. The bottom line is not to keep secrets from your spouse. If you are struggling with some temptation, let them know and they will become your accountability partner. Being the person who is the closest to you, they can help prevent you from having this problem if you allow them to.
Losing the feeling of being in love
It happens to every couple at some point and to some degree, you fall out of love. The fall into love is incredibly fast, especially considering the love at first sight scenario. Although it may seem effortless at first, it takes a cultivation to maintain the feeling of love. It is like growing beautiful flowers, you have fertilize, water, and trim off the dead leaves in order for the plant to keep growing and producing new flowers. Likewise, you have to date and pursue your spouse to keep those feelings of love fresh.
Money problems can be a huge stressor in a marriage, but by planning in advance, by putting some shingles up you can prevent them from hurting your marriage. You may not be able to prevent money problems from happening, but you can prevent them from destroying your marriage. Also, your differences in handling money can actually benefit your marriage relationship. The spouse who is more detail oriented may be better at handling the daily cash flow, and the spouse who is the saver, may be better at planning and investing for the future. In working together you make a potential problem a strength in your marriage. Also, understand that having things, is not as important as having each other. Value your love more than your possessions and you will be able to weather financial problems.
We all say it, in some iteration or another in our wedding vows, “for better or for worse, for richer or poorer, in sickness and in health”. Then it actually happens, one spouse cannot fulfill there end of the partnership and the other must pick up the slack. This is the test of real love, it is in giving when the other person cannot give back to you. It is in honor your commitment and your vows when you get nothing in return. It mirrors your relationship with God, who honors his covenant of salvation even when He is getting little or nothing in return. I think of my godly mother, who takes care of my disabled dad who can no longer take care of himself. Go get a ladder, climb up on the roof your marriage, and nail some shingles to the covenant you have made with your spouse.
It is strange that living together, sharing so much personal space, and knowing each other so intimately can produce resentfulness and hateful words, but it can. The subject matter for arguments are innumerable, but usually not worth the hurt and damage they cause. It can be as simple as “where are we going to eat at?” and as complicated as “where did all our money go?”. No one else in the world knows how to push your buttons like the person you share your life with.
Before you raise your voice and say all those things at the top of your mind, and before you give your spouse a piece of your mind, stop and walk away. Agree to discuss the problem later once you have both calmed down. This will also give you time to consider your spouses point of view by imagining yourself in their position. You may also find that you are being selfish in the matter by not considering what your spouse wants instead of just what you want. Then you can both sit down and come to reasonable solution.
Also, consider how consequential or non-consequential your conflict may actual be. It may not be worth world war or event the cold war. It is quite comical to consider some of things that couples argue about. Why fight about something that is really not that important to begin with? If you want to eat healthy, but your spouse really wants greasy fast food fried chicken, instead of arguing about it, get them what they want and grab yourself a salad on the way home.
Consider letting your spouse know what you want instead of expecting them to guess it! In dealing with men, sometimes you just have to come out and say it. Men are not typically good at intuition like women are. It is like wives speak a secret language, and then expect their man to figure it out. Lets just be honest here, men are too primal for that, you have to spell it out to us. We are like cavemen in this way, we like reading the hieroglyphics on the wall instead of reading between the complicated emotional lines. Go ahead and put the roof up on this one in advance.
It is tragic to see a marriage where spouses hit each other, and use abusing language. It absolutely destroys the picture of Christ and the Church (see Ephesian 5: 25) as Christ would never harm His beloved bride. This should never happen in a christian marriage. You may expect it from the world, but not from a saved born again christian couple. The key is to make that commitment that you are not going to hurt one another. Put the roof of protection over your marriage and make it a safe place. To control your temper, use the the power of prayer, the words of scripture, and depend of the Spirit of God. You could also consider a christian counselor to help work through your anger, or an addiction program as substance abuse is often tied to physical abuse.
2. Your Marriage Needs Longevity (20:15 minutes)
Roofs are made to last. According to Wikipedia, you can expect a lower end thin shingle roof to last twenty years, while a slate roof can last up to 150 years. Because they are so critical to a house, roofs must be built to last as long as possible. It is even more important that your marriage be built in a way that will last.
God Intended Marriage to Last a Lifetime
They say unto him, Why did Moses then command to give a writing of divorcement, and to put her away? He saith them, Moses because of the hardness of your hearts suffered you to put away your wives: but from the beginning it was not so.Matthew 19: 7-8
From the beginning God created marriage to be between a man and woman for a lifetime. It is therefore your responsibility within the covenant of marriage to consider the long term impact of your actions on your marriage. Take divorce talk or leaving out of your vocabulary. You stood before God almighty and made vows to be couple not just until things get tough, but through whatever life and circumstances may come your way.
Divorce is not an option for the christian marriage. Work through your problems together instead of running away from them. Jesus does not leave his bride when she is not doing what he wants, instead He patiently continues to pursue her and a resolution to their problems. This what a believing spouse should do- pursue the other and a resolution to your problems. Absolutely refuse to give up on your marriage, just like Jesus absolutely refuses to give up on you.
Learn to Become Adaptable to Changes
Roofs are made to be rigid, but are adaptable enough to protect from any number of elements. You should in a similar fashion, be rigid in your faith but adaptable to changes in you lives together. Overtime your financial situation may change, your health situation may change, or YOU may change. You can strengthen your marriage and love by learning to accept and adapt to these changes.
Here is a big news flash, life is not always picture perfect. When I was little my family would go to a local photography studio each year to get a family photo. On the walls of my parent’s house are pictures of our smiling family with perfectly combed hair. Real life however, is more like those embarrassing annual school photos of mine, with my outdated hairstyles, over-worn t-shirts, and pimpled face. Marriage just doesn’t pan out like the fairy tales! You just never know what is going to happen.
Healing Takes Time
When things happen in your marriage, it may take some time for those things to heal. It is therefore imperative that your marriage be built to last. Tragedies take time to recover from. Trust takes time to win back. Love takes time to restore. Mistakes take time to correct. Don’t yield to the temptation to give up on your marriage when it takes time to heal. God will make your love deeper and more meaningful if you allow Him to change things in time. God cares about you and He cares about your marriage.
3. Your Marriage Needs Support (27:38 minutes)
The roof is a critical structure to a house. It is a part of what is called the envelope of a structure. It works together with walls and beams to hold the entire building together. Likewise, your marriage must work together with other support in order to maintain its structure.
God created the local, visible church in this world for the benefit of you and your marriage. When things get tough in marriage and in life, lean on the church. Stay faithful and in those times of hardship become even more entrenched in faithfulness to His house. The resources you need are there with God’s people.
Use the people that God has put into your life that are a benefit to you spiritual. Your pastor might be a great person you could talk to about problems in your marriage and that can help support you through problems. Godly friends can also encourage and pray for you as you go through things. You have to fight the tendency to withdraw from the people who love you when you are having problems. Those people who love you are the ones who can help you the most.
In seeking help from people, be careful not consult with those who don’t love you, or who may not really be interested in your success. For example, your followers on social media may not have the best marriage advice for you. Your family member who has already been divorced twice may not be the best person to consult about your problems.
Put the roof up on your marriage because you need: