Zealously Protect Your Marriage, Part 3, Day 23
Special Note: If you and/or your spouse has committed adultery, please seek professional Biblical counseling. I would highly recommend Affaircare, a community dedicated to committed, godly marriages and offering redemptive help after an affair. Today’s post is Part 3 of a series on faithfulness – see parts 1 and 2. This series is not intended for those of you who have been victims of rape (forcing your spouse to have sex is never okay), abuse, and violence in and/or out of marriage. Please seek professional help!
Over the last two days, we’ve talked about 3 ways to protect your marital fidelity, and today I’m going to add 1 more 11th of a POMEGRANATE.
Establish Healthy Relational Boundaries
1. Make it a practice not to be alone with the opposite sex.
2. If it’s completely unavoidable, don’t do or say anything you wouldn’t do or say if your spouse was right there with you.
Karen Scalf Linamen writes in Pillow Talk,
Use wisdom in making choices and pursuing outside friendships. The ‘letter of the law’ may say there’s nothing wrong with going to lunch with an attractive coworker or making a business trip with a colleague of the opposite gender or getting together with an old flame. Yet don’t allow yourself the trap or justifying your actions with the excuse that, technically, you’re not doing anything wrong. Let wisdom and caution be your guides.
3. Don’t seek counsel or comfort from another man when your man has failed or hurt you. Take your concerns to God first. Try to work through conflict with your husband before involving other people. Always speak positive things about your husband.
Does this mean you shouldn’t ever seek counsel? No. In fact, speaking to a trusted, godly woman friend about something you might be struggling with in your marriage is a biblical idea, but take your concerns to God first.
4. Exercise wisdom and caution in who you speak to about your struggles.
5. Ask your spouse if there are areas in your marriage or people in your life where you need to set healthy boundaries. You can’t always see when someone else may be intruding on your marriage, when someone else has crossed the line from ‘being friendly’ to ‘flirting,’ or even where you yourself have. This is why it’s wise to ask your husband’s advice. Accept his wisdom graciously, and agree to pray together for a solution.
If you aren’t actively practicing fidelity in marriage, you are being selfish. Dare to stay ahead of temptation by setting wise, healthy boundaries in your relationships and life.
Today’s 30 Minute Challenge (Nov 23rd): Zealously Protect Your Marriage
Ask yourself these questions, and consider bringing your husband into discuss these questions also.
- What kind of company am I keeping? Am I hanging around people who tear down marriage and make fun of God’s purpose for marriage or am I spending time in fellowship with those who support and affirm marriage?
- Am I watching what I say? Do I indulge in gossip or do I curb the urge to spill private details about my husband’s life, his family’s, and other people’s?
- Am I drawing unwanted attention to myself? Am I tempting other men with my attire, including my fiancé? Do I dress immodestly or modestly?
- Do I play the comparison game? Do I covet what other women have in their relationships with their boyfriends/ fiancés/ husbands? Do I wish my husband would be more like someone else? Or do I lovingly accept my husband for who he is, flaws and all?
- How have my relationships with the opposite sex changed now that I’m married? Are there any boundaries I need to set?
- Do I affirm my spouse’ dreams, desires, goals, work, and decisions? Do I uplift him with my speech, attitude, and actions? Do I encourage him in his work, to pursue his dreams, and to reach his goals? Do I criticize decisions he makes, or do I respect them?
- In what ways, do we feel protected by one another? In what ways, do we feel unprotected by one another? What areas can we work on to build a hedge of protection around our marriage? How can we better arm ourselves against the attacks of the Evil One?
5 Minute Marathon
Write out today’s Bible verse – 1 Corinthians 4:7 – and pray this verse over your marriage.
Lord, I praise You for Your salvation and for Your Word. Thank You for giving me guiding principles for my life and marriage. I don’t want marriage to be about me, but about glorifying You and exalting my spouse. Make us aware of areas where we need boundaries. Help us to love each other in kindness and generosity. Help me to serve my husband in and out of the bedroom. Amen.
Take it a Step Further
Read my post – 3 Lessons I’ve Learned About Selfishness. It was written for engaged couples & newlyweds, but it applies to all married couples. Then pick one of these exercises:
- Selflessness Reflects Attentiveness: Take a whole day (or half a day) to spend quality time with your husband. Play tourist in your hometown or have a coffee shop date.
- Selflessness Reflects Truth: Write down your expectations for marriage. Discuss these with your husband.
- Selflessness Builds Satisfaction: Surprise your honey with some sacrificial romance. Give up your time, money, or energy to plan something romantic for him and to show you’re willing to be a servant. Consider washing his feet, surprising him with a lunch date, or tickets to something he really wants to go see.
Share with Us
How do you actively fight against selfishness in your marriage?
This post is Day 23 in of the 30 Dates in November Challenge. Today’s challenge included modified material from Driving to the Moon and Back. See related posts – The Most Important Step in Staying Faithful in Marriage, Say YES to Sex, How Selfishness Nearly Cost Me My Marriage, and How to Divorce Proof Your Marriage. Linking up with Fellowship Fridays on Christian Mommy Blogger & Messy Marriage.
- Posted in: 30 Dates in November ♦ Change and Growth ♦ Communication Tips & Techniques ♦ Conflict Resolution ♦ Encouragement ♦ Expectations ♦ Fruits of the Spirit ♦ Intimate Issues ♦ Knowing God ♦ Real Marriage ♦ Sex
- Tagged: 30 Dates in November 2013, Faithfulness, Pillow Talk, Selfishness, Selflessness, Sexual Intimacy Struggles, The Marriage Bed