Ask the Pastor

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I’ve decided I must move faster to retire all the leftover questions from our “Hot Seat” Sunday back in August, so today let’s look at four different marriage-related questions

1) How do you get over the pain of infidelity?

  • Obviously, there is NO easy answer to this question, but in my opinion, there are two necessities: (a) the injured party must forgive.  That will probably take time and also require the guilty spouse demonstrating by his/her actions a willingness to regain trust in the marriage, but it’s impossible to get over the pain without forgiveness; and (b) in my experience, it almost always requires counseling from a third-party who can help the couple objectively.  Let me close by encouraging you that it CAN be done, as many couples have proven through the years, and your marriage can be better than before!

2) How do you deal with a controlling and verbally abusive mother-in-law that lives with you? 

  • Wowzers, no softball questions this time, huh.  In a nutshell, it will require tough love and it’s important that both husband and wife are in agreement.  If you need some Biblical support, try Genesis 2:24.  From a Biblical standpoint, there’s no doubt that the marriage takes priority over the parents, so that must be walked out in the home, especially if the in-law’s live with you.

3) How do I become a better listener when communicating with my wife? f

  • That’s a GREAT question, because most often (in my experience) we don’t recognize the need for listening to our spouse.  To answer the question, there are lots of tactics you can employ, such as repeating what you think she said and verifying with her before responding, etc.-but in brief, listening is a skill that anyone can attain by focused effort. Look at her when she’s talking to you (not staring at your phone or the TV); give her your focused attention, and you’ll both be happier!

4) I desperately want to have another child, but my husband is against it. I pray and ask God to soften his heart. Should I continue? 

  • As much as I hurt for you, I must say this is an area where husband and wife should be in agreement.  When my wife and I have disagreed on important issues, I feel that, at the very least, my timing is off.  So by all means, continue to pray – but also be open to God changing your heart.  If God does not change your desires and you still want another child, I would encourage you to pray earnestly again, and then schedule a time to talk with your husband when neither of you is stressed – so that the conversation can be rational and logical, not argumentative and demanding.  Give him reasons why you want another child along with possible solutions to any objections you think he may have in advance. Finally, leave the outcome with God, and don’t allow this to become a point of contention and bitterness in your marriage.

Whew!  I hope those brief answers were helpful.  Would you care to join the conversation?  If so, leave your comments or questions below.

By the way, since all 4 of today’s questions were marriage-related, let me encourage you to join us for our December sermon series at each CLC campus as we look at “Family Christmas” and try to help CLC’ers with the stresses that often accompany this special season – it’s gonna be good!

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