Category Archives: Marriage

http://www.cfcindia.com/ – Bro. Zac Poonen and Annie poonen

http://www.cfcindia.com/

http://www.cfcindia.com/books

http://www.cfcindia.com/sermons

http://www.cfcindia.com/studies

http://www.cfcindia.com/topical

http://www.cfcindia.com/wftw

http://www.cfcindia.com/gospel

http://www.cfcindia.com/apps

http://www.cfcindia.com/downloads

http://www.cfcindia.com/whats-new

The church of believers that meets at Christian Fellowship Centre (CFC) today commenced with a few families that first met together in Bangalore, India in August 1975. Led by Zac Poonen and Ian Robson, they decided to first be disciples of the Lord Jesus Christ themselves, and then to make disciples in obedience to the Lord’s commission in Matthew 28:18-20. They emphasized new birth, holiness of inner life, mutual love, moral purity, financial integrity and sharing God’s truth with others – founding every aspect of their lives on God’s Word alone.

Starting as a small House Church, this body of Christ has grown steadily in the understanding and experience of the New Covenant Life in the Spirit. Right from the start, and through its growth over four decades the same set of distinctives has become the DNA of this Church. We soon felt a burden to share these wonderful truths that had transformed our own lives with others, starting with a monthly paper on the overcoming life and a tape ministry, and conferences for like minded disciples. In 1981 the growing Church moved into a meeting hall constructed at 40, DaCosta Square, in Bangalore. 1982-1989 marked the beginnings of the work of planting churches in other cities and states in India.

1989-1995 was a very productive period in Zac Poonen’s book writing ministry, and in the coming years he published more than twenty books. By 1997 the audio tape outreach had reached many lands. In 1999 at the age of 60, Zac Poonen gave up Eldership of CFC, Bangalore in order to travel with the Word. Our Internet outreach started in 2003 and this period also saw planting of churches in other continents. In 2014, the Church at Bangalore, having completed forty years as a Church, and also having outgrown our old hall, moved into our current meeting hall at Paradise Enclave, Bellahalli, Bangalore

Eldership at CFC Bangalore:

Christian Fellowship Church has always sought to follow New Testament teaching with respect to leadership of a local church (Tit.1:5; Acts 14:23). The word Elders indicated as “Plural” shows the necessity of having multiple elders in a local church to maintain balance in the leadership. At Bangalore, our leadership consists of four Elders- Ian Robson, Newton, Charles Banna and Vettriselvan. As per biblical teaching, the expectation on every individual member of the church is to be subject to the authority of these elders in all matters concerning the local church (Heb.13:17; 1 Thess.5:12-13).

http://www.cfcindia.com/a-short-history

http://www.cfcindia.com/contact-us

 

 

 

 

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“Talitha kum!”

Dear all,

May grace and peace be multiplied to you in the knowledge of God and of Jesus our Lord. II Peter 1: 2

Word: Taking the child by the hand, He *said to her, “Talitha kum!” (which translated means, “Little girl, I say to you, get up!”). 42 Immediately the girl got up and began to walk, for she was twelve years old. And immediately they were completely astounded.

Thought: What role Jesus played in Peter, James and John’s life?

https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=Mark+5%3A37-43

Jesus played a significant role in these peoples’ life. He changed their attitudes, characters, life style and changed their destination in a heavenly way.

Stand firm in Christ

The Journey Team

https://thejourneyinchrist.wordpress.com/

Holy Spirit’s Vision Inscribed In Touch Vs Worldly vision

Be strong in the Lord and His mighty power. Ephesians 6: 10

Word: Matthew 6: 19 – 24 – The Truth about Treasures

“Do not store up for yourselves treasures on earth, where moth and rust destroy, and where thieves break in and steal. 20 But store up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where neither moth nor rust destroys, and where thieves do not break in or steal; 21 for where your treasure is, there your heart will be also.

https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=Matthew+6%3A+19-24&version=NASB

006

Thought: Holy Spirit’s Vision Inscribed In Touch Vs Worldly vision

Spiritual vision is to see clearly what God wants us to see the world from His point of view. But this spiritual insight can be easily clouded and entangled by “selfish” desires and sinful attitudes. The  Bible says a good eye is one that is fixed up on Jesus (Hebrews 12: 1-2).

Have a Victorious walk in Christ

The Journey Team

https://thejourneyinchrist.wordpress.com/

Psalms 90 – A prayer of Moses the man of God

Dear all,
Be strong in the Lord and His mighty power. Ephesians 6: 10
Word
67
Lord, you have been our dwelling place throughout all generations. Before the mountains were born or you brought forth the whole world, from everlasting to everlasting you are God. You turn people back to dust, saying, “Return to dust, you mortals.” A thousand years in your sight are like a day that has just gone by, or like a watch in the night. Yet you sweep people away in the sleep of death they are like the new grass of the morning: In the morning it springs up new, but by evening it is dry and withered. We are consumed by your anger and terrified by your indignation. You have set our iniquities before you, our secret sins in the light of your presence. All our days pass away under your wrath; we finish our years with a moan. Our days may come to seventy years, or eighty, if our strength endures; yet the best of them are but trouble and sorrow, for they quickly pass, and we fly away. If only we knew the power of your anger! Your wrath is as great as the fear that is your due. Teach us to number our days, that we may gain a heart of wisdom. Relent, Lord! How long will it be? Have compassion on your servants. Satisfy us in the morning with your unfailing love, that we may sing for joy and be glad all our days. Make us glad for as many days as you have afflicted us, for as many years as we have seen trouble. May your deeds be shown to your servants, your splendor to their children. May the favor of the Lord our God rest on us; establish the work of our hands for us yes, establish the work of our hands.

Let us then approach God’s throne of grace with confidence, so that we may receive mercy and find grace to help us in our time of need. Hebrews 4: 16
Have a blessed Thanksgiving.
Stand firm in Christ
The Journey Team
thechapelbr.com/adult/counseling
https://thejourneyinchrist.wordpress.com/

What are God’s Principles for Communication ?

The Heart of Marriage

Dennis & Jill Eenigenburg

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9. What are God’s Principles for Communication?

I. Communication functions best in a positive atmosphere. Ephesians 5:33

A. When a husband rightly loves his wife he creates a positive atmosphere for communication.

B. When a wife is rightly respecting her husband she creates a positive atmosphere for communication.

It has been said that men and women breathe different types of oxygen. The wife is sustained by the oxygen of her husband’s love. Her husband is sustained by the oxygen of his wife’s respect. When these elements are lacking, great stress is felt in the marriage as each longs for that which nurtures them emotionally.

II. Communication functions best with the right message and the right methods. Ephesians 4:29

A. It is never appropriate to use words that are crude or hurtful.

B. It is always appropriate to carefully evaluate the need of the moment.

C. It is always appropriate to treat one another with grace.

D. It is always appropriate to speak the truth.

E. It is always appropriate to speak in love.

Before we begin the process toward a more godly style of communication we need to pull out the darts we have inflicted on each other over the years. Sometimes we also add poison to our verbal attacks. We say the words, “always” or “never.” We call each other derogatory names.

Each of us needs to ask our spouse from time to time if they have wounds that need to be resolved. We remove the painful darts when we ask forgiveness and stop repeating the offense. Once the dart is removed the healing can begin.

To prevent future verbal injury, we must speak the truth in love.

III. Communication works best with a Spirit-controlled tongue. (Speaking)

A. The flesh-controlled tongue is out of control James 1:26, 3:6, 3:8

B. The Spirit-controlled tongue is under God’s control. James 3:2, 3:10-11, 1:25

C. The Spirit-controlled tongue expresses itself with wisdom.

1. The Spirit-controlled tongue uses words wisely Colossians 3:16-17

2. The Spirit-controlled tongue measures timing wisely. Proverbs 15:23

3. The Spirit-controlled tongue uses silence wisely. Proverbs 10:19

4. The Spirit-controlled tongue always responds to insults wisely. 1 Peter 3:9

5. The Spirit-controlled tongue is used wisely as an instrument of praise to God. Colossians 3:16-17

6. The Spirit-controlled tongue wisely communicates love. Song of Solomon 4:10

Heart of Marriage Communication Tips:

Experts in communications say that a large percentage of communication is non-verbal. If you wish to communicate effectively consider the following non-verbal communication tips:

• Make sure the tone and volume of you voice is appropriate and pleasant.

• Make sure your body language in not threatening but relaxed.

• If possible make eye contact with your spouse.

• Chose a time and place that is appropriate for the topic discussed.

IV. Communication works best with Spirit-controlled ears. (Listening)

A. The flesh-controlled ears do not hear well. Hebrews 5:11, James 1:22-24

Heart of Marriage Tips:

Negative listening habits to be avoided:

• The habit of pretending to be listening while thinking of other things.

• The habit of interrupting or talking over the other person.

• The habit of refusing to listen to criticism or negative feedback.

• The habit of reacting without seeking to understand the others point of view.

B. Spirit-controlled ears hear well.

1. Spirit-controlled ears are responsive to the Word of God James 1:25

2. Spirit-controlled ears are responsive to one’s spouse. James 1:19

Heart of Marriage Listening Tips:

• Give your spouse your undivided attention.

• Communicate acceptance with friendly body language.

• Ask questions to make sure you understand what is being said.

• Don’t interrupt the other person.

• Make meaningful responses.

• Make eye contact.

V. Communication works best when we adjust for one another’s differences in communication styles.

Communication styles differ based on the temperaments and personalities of individuals. It is not unusual for people with different communication styles to be attracted to each other and marry. In a general sense, we observe some people to be task oriented and others people oriented. Some people live life at a fast pace and some at a slow pace. Some people find it difficult to express their emotions and some find it difficult to suppress their emotions. Some people are very talkative others are people of few words.

COMMUNICATION STYLES

<———————————————————————————————————–>

Fact-Oriented Emotion Oriented

Few Words Many Words

Closed Open

A. What are counter-productive ways to handle differences of communication styles?

1. Do not ridicule or criticize your spouse’s style of communication.

2. Do not try to force your mate to use your style of communication.

3. Do not react to the other person’s emotions with your facts.

4. Do not react to the other person’s facts with your emotions.

B. What are productive ways to handle differences of communication styles?

1. Affirm the strengths of one another’s communication styles.

2. In love seek to accommodate and adjust to each other’s styles.

3. Respond to emotional expression with an encouraging emotional response.

4. Respond to factual expression with positive factual response.

We need to apply love to our adjustment to each other’s communication styles. Philippians 2:4

How does the spouse of “many words” show love to the spouse of “few words?” Love is shown by intentionally coming to the point more directly and limiting the embellishment of the conversation.

How does the spouse of “few words” show love to the spouse of “many words”? Love is shown by intentionally adding more details to give the other person a fuller description of the setting and feeling related to the issue being presented.

C. How do gender differences affect communications in marriage?

1. Women generally have a high felt need for conversation.

This may not be true in your marriage but it is generally true in a vast majority of marriages. The implication is clear. Women usually have a higher felt need for conversation than do men.

2. Men generally do not have a high felt need for conversation.

“You husbands likewise live with your wives in an understanding way” I Peter 3:7

VI. Communications works best when it promotes transparency.

In the exclusive bond of marriage there exists the potential to enjoy the most transparent and intimate of relationships. The physical oneness in marriage is achieved through the joining of two bodies. Emotional and spiritual oneness is the joining of our souls. In order to experience this oneness we need to be more and more open and transparent in our conversations. Harsh, critical and demeaning conversation undermines trust and closes the heart in self-protection. Loving, kind, encouraging words build trust, and promote ever-increasing openness and oneness.

A. Marital transparency can mirror our transparency with God.

There is in the human heart a desire to be deeply known and still be deeply loved. It is yearning that comes from the ideal experience of the first couple that were fully known and loved by God and fully known and loved by each other.

B. Marital transparency increases oneness with one’s spouse.

1. Spiritual transparency is developed when couples converse with God together.

2. Emotional transparency is developed when couples earn trust and verbally open their hearts to each other.

• Verbal openness includes trusting each other enough to share your opinions.

• Verbal openness includes trusting each other enough to share your feelings.

• Verbal openness includes trusting each other enough to share your dreams and aspirations.

• Verbal openness includes trusting each other enough to share your failures and weaknesses.

Emotional transparency allows us to share our most intimate thoughts and feelings with someone who loves us unconditionally and will rejoice with us when we rejoice and will weep with us when we weep.

WARNING: Emotional transparency requires trust. If either betrays this trust, the door of openness and emotional intimacy will close.

What are some ways emotional transparency could be betrayed?

1)

2)

3)

Take it to Heart

List three strengths in the area of communications you enjoy with your spouse:

1.

2.

3.

List three weaknesses that need improvement in your communication with your spouse.

1.

2.

3.

WHAT ARE THE PRINCIPLES FOR A GRACE FILLED MARRIAGE

The Heart of Marriage

Dennis & Jill Eenigenburg

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8. WHAT ARE THE PRINCIPLES FOR A GRACE FILLED MARRIAGE?

I. GRACE-FILLED MARRIAGES FOLLOW CHRIST’S EXAMPLE

A. Husbands and wives need to humbly serve each other. Philippians 2:5-8

B. Husbands and wives need to demonstrate sacrificial love. Ephesians 5:2

C. Husbands and wives need to be committed to unity. John 17:22-23

D. Husbands and wives need be willing to suffer without sinning. I Peter 2:19-20

II. GRACE-FILLED MARRIAGES OBEY BIBLICAL EXHORTATIONS

A. Wives are called to influence their husbands through their Godliness. I Peter 3:1-6

• The wife’s godliness is expressed through submission to her husband’s God give headship in the marriage.

• The wife’s godliness is expressed without words.

• The wife’s godliness is expressed with deeds.

B. Husbands are called to influence their wives through their graciousness. I Peter 3:7

• The husband demonstrates graciousness by being a good student of his wife’s needs.

• The husband demonstrates graciousness by being sensitive to her limitations.

• The husband demonstrates graciousness by honoring her as his spiritual sister.

C. Husbands and wives are called to “out grace” each other. I Peter 3:8-9

1. To sum up husbands and wives “let all be harmonious.”

Harmony is not uniformity. Harmony is produced by complimentary differences. Diferent sounds in music are combined in a way to produce harmony. When a husband and wife both “sing from the Divine music of God’s Word,” they produce harmony with their different strengths and weaknesses in marriage.

2. To sum up husbands and wives, “let all be sympathetic.”

Sympathy is being touched by the feeling of another person. To enter into their joy and sorrow produces emotional support and closeness. Romans 12:15

3. To sum up husband and wives, “let all be brotherly.”

Husbands and wives are to exhibit a family love. Family celebrates the oneness we have with a common Father, a common Lord and a common Life. No longer do we speak of yours and mine. We speak of ours.

Our bond is such that all we have is available for the wellbeing of our spouse. We share one another’s burdens and seek to make the others load lighter.

4. To sum up husbands and wives, “let all be kindhearted.”

Unconfessed sin leads to hardheartedness. The Spirit-filled heart is compassionate and sensitive to the needs of one’s spouse. Caring and sharing are expressions of kindheartedness.

5. To sum up husbands and wives, “let all be humble in spirit.”

Humility is a proper estimation of our inability to do anything worthwhile apart from God’s provision and strength. Pride and self-confidence always result in failure. Humility allows us to tolerate the shortcomings of others, as we are aware of our own.

III. GRACE-FILLED MARRIAGES RETURN GOOD FOR BAD I Peter 3:9

A. Grace-filled marriages never return “evil for evil” nor “insult for insult.”

B. Grace-filled marriages always give a blessing in return for evil or insult.

“Blessings” are verbal or concrete acts of kindness.

C. Grace-filled marriages enjoy God’s blessings.

D. Grace-filled marriages pass on God’s blessings to each other and others. I Peter 3:10-12

Those who wish to “love life” live the “grace-filled” life by:

• Refusing to speak evil against others

• Turning from evil deed to do good

• Seeking peace with others

Those who live the grace-filled life are rewarded by God.

• God’s eyes are on you

• God’s ears hear you.

GRACE MEANS TREATING EACH OTHER BETTER THAN WE DESERVE

TAKE IT TO HEART

1. In what ways does your marriage fall short of a “grace-based” marriage?

2. In what ways does your marriage reflect a “grace-based” marriage?

3. How do you treat your spouse?

Rate your treatment of your spouse:

1= Almost Never, 2 = Sometimes, 3 = Usually, 4 = Almost Always

___ Harmonious

___ Sympathetic

___ Brotherly

___ Kindhearted

___ Humble in spirit

3. How can you return a blessing the next time you feel hurt or disappointed with your spouse?

WHAT ARE GOD’S PRINCIPLES FOR RESOLVING CONFLICT? Week – 7

The Heart of Marriage

Dennis & Jill Eenigenburg

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7. WHAT ARE GOD’S PRINCIPLES FOR RESOLVING CONFLICT?

Introduction

The premise of this study on marriage is that we are to paint a portrait of the relationship of Christ and His Bride the Church. The Bible describes sinful mankind and a Holy God in conflict. Because God is holy he could not ignore the punishment our sin deserved. Because God loves us He made a just way for our sins to be forgiven. This forgiveness is made available through the substitutionary death of the sinless Son of God Jesus Christ. When sinners place their faith in Christ’s death in their place they are forgiven and the conflict with God is removed.

Every married couple experiences conflict on various levels. The issue is not avoiding all conflict. The issue is following God’s example and exhortations for resolving conflict. Conflict can result in separation or in resolution, depending on how we choose to respond. Let us begin by considering the gift of peace from the perfect Peacemaker.

I. RESOLVING CONFLICT IS POSSIBLE THROUGH GOD’S GIFT OF PEACE TO US.

God’s peace expresses itself in three dimensions.

A. We have been given the gift of peace with God. Romans 5:1-2

B. We have been given the gift of peace with others. Ephesians 4:2-3

We are called to “preserve the unity of the Spirit in the bond of peace.” This tells us that the Spirit has already established unity in the relationships of believers.

In the marriage of two believers there is a spiritual unity established by the Holy Spirit based on spiritual realities. As we focus on the oneness we have in Christ we promote oneness in the marriage relationship. When we take our eyes off these spiritual realities, we disrupt unity.

C. We have been given the gift of peace with ourselves. John 14:27

If as believers we have been given the gift of peace and unity why do we still experience conflict in marriage and other relationships? It is helpful to consider the various sources of conflict because the source often dictates the solution.

II. RESOLVING CONFLICT REQUIRES AN HONEST CONSIDERATION OF THE SOURCES OF CONFLICT.

A. Sometimes marriage conflict comes from inappropriate desires.

1. The sources of inappropriate desires are the world, the flesh and the devil. James 4:1-4

James describes the conflict believers have with the world, the flesh and devil. Even though we have been set free from bondage to these influences we still experience temptation. Temptation appeals to the desires of the flesh in conflict with the desires of the Holy Spirit. In this passage we see a variety of desires that put us in conflict with God and in conflict with others.

• Lust is the desire for pleasures that are immoral.

The result of blocked lust is sometimes the destruction of other.

• Envy is the inappropriate desire for the position or possessions of others.

The result of blocked envy is fighting and quarrelling.

• Friendship with the world is expressed by living in its godless ways.

The result of worldly living is hostility with God.

2. The solution to inappropriate desires is repentance. James 4:7-10

• Repentance requires submission to God.

• Repentance requires resisting the devil

• Repentance results in drawing near to God and restoring fellowship.

• Repentance requires putting aside evil thoughts and deeds.

• Repentance includes a grieving over one’s sins.

• Repentance restores the humility that results in God blessing one’s life.

B. Sometimes conflict in marriage comes from natural differences.

1. Couples experience conflict based on different temperaments.

It may be helpful to distinguish between temperament, character and personality.

Temperament is a combination of inborn traits that affect our behavior subconsciously.

Character is one’s natural temperament modified by childhood training, education, spiritual convictions and beliefs.

Personality is an outward expression of ourselves, which may or may not reflect our character. Personality can be façade or a genuine expression of our inner self.

THE FOUR BASIC TEMPERMANTS THEORY

400 years before Christ, Hippocrates, a brilliant Greek physician and philosopher proposed four different types of temperament. While no person is a single-temperament type, each person usually has one type that is predominant over the others.

It may be helpful to read the following descriptions and identify your own dominant temperament and that of your spouse. Place an ”

I” in the space that best describes your temperament and an “S” on the line of the best description of your spouse.

___

Sanguine – The Sanguine are warm, buoyant, lively, receptive, spontaneous and out-going. He never lacks for friends. Feelings rather than reflective thought influence his decisions. He enjoys people and avoids solitude. He has a tendency to speak before he thinks.

___

Choleric – The Choleric temperament is described by the following words: hot, quick, active, practical, strong-willed, self-sufficient, decisive and opinionated. Cholerics are often leaders who are determined, purposeful and willing to stand against the opinion of others for what they believe is right. His least developed area is his emotions. He is often insensitive to the feelings of others because he is task, not relationship oriented.

___

Melancholic – The Melancholic temperament is described in the following words: analytical, self-sacrificing, gifted, perfectionist, sensitive and emotional. Melancholics are often gifted in the arts. A dependable friend but does not push himself on others. His analytical ability causes him to see the dangers and obstacles in any project he is part of planning. He has a strong desire to be loved by others. By nature he is an introvert. He is prone to emotional swings from ecstasy to gloom. He places high value on self-sacrifice.

___

Phlegmatic – The phlegmatic temperament is slow, calm, easy going, well balanced and happy. He enjoys life and has a dry sense of humor. He is rarely angry or depressed. He is steady and often tries to avoid direct involvement. He does not lack for friends because he enjoys people. He is sympathetic, but hides his true feelings. He does not seek leadership but when pressed to do it he proves capable. He tends to be a peacemaker.

2. Couples experience conflict based on different priorities and pace.

Priority refers to what we value.

___ I am task oriented if I value accomplishing a task over nurturing or establishing relationships.

___ I am people oriented if I value nurturing or establishing relationships over accomplishing tasks.

Pace refers to the speed or lack of speed generated by our temperaments.

___ I am a fast-paced person compared to most other people I know.

___ I am a slow-paced person compared to most other people I know.

TAKE IT TO HEART

1. What are some examples of how having different temperaments in marriage can lead to conflicts?

2. What are some examples of how having different priorities in marriage can lead to conflicts?

3. What are some examples of how having different pace in marriage can lead to conflicts?

4. How have these differences led to conflicts in your marriage?

3. Suggestions for resolving conflicts arising from temperament differences include:

 Allowing God to transform your temperament weakness through the fruit of the Holy Spirit. Galatians 5:22-23

 Accepting each other’s differences and learning from each other’s strengths.

C. Sometimes conflict in marriage comes from differences of opinion.

1. Differences of opinion are common because each person is unique.

Many things influence our opinions and preferences. We reflect on previous experiences, the examples of our parents, the way we were raised. Our opinions will also be impacted by one’s personality, preferences and gender differences.

2. Suggestions for resolving differences of opinion include:

•Let each person express his or her point of view without interruption or criticism.

•Ask each other questions for clarification.

•Determine the main point of disagreement.

•Seek for any Biblical principles for or against the views presented.

•Commit to pray for a resolution and unity.

•If an impasse still exists and decision must be made and the issue the husband as leader should be granted that responsibility. (the wife is not obligated to do anything immoral or illegal under her husbands headship)

But I want you to understand that Christ is the head of every man, and the man is the head of a woman, and God is the head of Christ. I Corinthians 11:3

III. CONFLICT RESOLUTION IN MARRIAGE SOMETIMES REQUIRES LOVING CONFRONTATION AND FORGIVENESS.

When a married couple has a difference of opinion that is serious enough to lead to conflict what should they do to resolve the issue?

A. Some couples react to conflict with “fight responses” (DOMINATION) such as:

•Outbursts of anger and loss of self-control.

•Abusive language

•Threats

•Physical assault

The “fight responses” are always inappropriate ways for believers to treat one another. If this is a pattern in your marriage you need to confess your sin before God and ask your mate for your forgiveness. Repentance is also needed. To repent is to change course or manner of behavior.

B. Some couples react to conflict with a “flight response” (ISOLATION) such as:

•Denial and pretending a problem does not exist

•Silence

•Withdrawing emotionally or physically from one’s mate.

•Separation

•Divorce

When a person is in physical danger, the “flight response” is an appropriate way to seek self-protection. In other kinds of conflict the “flight responses” are counter-productive. They deny or delay the need for resolution. They lead to resentment and isolation.

C. Some couples react to conflict with a “forgiving response” (RESOLUTION) which includes:

1. Caring confrontation:

Brethren, even if anyone is caught in any trespass, you who are spiritual, restore such a one in a spirit of gentleness; each one looking to yourself, so that you too will not be tempted. Galatians 6:1

 

“If anyone is caught in any transgression.” (INITIATIVE) — A transgression can be a moral transgression or a relational transgression. It is appropriate to approach someone we know and love if their behavior is offensive to God or to others. In marriage, it is an expression of love to confront wrongs committed by our spouse.

 

“you who are spiritual” — In church relationships the mature believers initiate confrontation. In marriage the caring spouse has that role. It is imperative that one be spiritually up to the task. Before confronting one’s spouse take time to examine your own heart. Be honest about your motivation.

 

“restore such a one in a spirit of gentleness” (AFFIRMATION) — The goal of confrontation is the restoration of the relationship. It is to resolve the offenses and return to marital oneness. Gentleness needs to be conveyed in one’s tone of voice and one’s choice of words.

 

“keep watch over yourself, lest you too be tempted.” (HUMILITY) — One temptation we need to conquer is the temptation of pride or arrogance. Just because we do not have the same weakness or sin of the person confronted is no basis for pride. We each have our own shortcomings and thus should always be humble when confronting one another.

2. Seeking Forgiveness

Therefore if you are presenting your offering at the altar, and there remember that your brother has something against you, leave your offering there before the altar and go; first be reconciled to your brother, and then come and present your offering. Matthew 5:23-24

TAKE IT TO HEART TIPS

When seeking forgiveness always:

1. Confess your offense to God first.

2. Admit your wrong without blaming the other person.

3. State clearly the offense you are confessing.

4. State steps you have taken to avoid this offense in the future.

5. Ask for forgiveness.

6. Offer to pray for the offended person if they so desire.

2. Granting Forgiveness

Be kind to one another, tender-hearted, forgiving each other, just as God in Christ also has forgiven you. Ephesians 4:32

TAKE IT TO HEART TIPS

When granting forgiveness always:

•Thank God for His generous forgiveness of your offenses.

•Acknowledge the hurt and pain the offense has caused.

•State the offense you are forgiving.

•Assure the offender of your own shortcomings.

•Affirm your desire to rebuild the damaged relationship.

•Pray daily for the offender and for restoration in the relationship.