Forgive and Forget – A Recipe for a Healthy Marriage
The average age of marriage in the United States is 29 for men and 27 for women.
Unlike the 1950’s or 1960’s, Americans are delaying marriage until they are older and better able to deal with the challenges serious relationships present. Even though adults are marrying later, approximately one half of all U.S. marriages still end in divorce.
I want to dedicate this blog to a discussion of the state of marriage in our society and how God can be our partner in creating a long-lasting and sustaining love relationship.
Relationship advice on the internet is never-ending. In addition to maintaining a successful secular marriage, the internet is ripe with advice on how to maintain a happy Christian marriage.
Here’s some advice I found online in the first five minutes researching this article.
1. Never go to bed angry.
2. Be willing to forgive your partner quickly after a fight.
3. Don’t insist on having the last word.
4. Make your relationship your first priority.
5. Keep a weekly date night.
6.Seek prayer together when things are not going right.
There are many things that kill a marital relationship–serious things like emotional and physical abuse, cheating, compulsive lying, and substance abuse. But what if none of these things are present in your own relationship? What if you just have a general feeling of resentment and disdain towards your significant other? Is it possible to heal, love and forgive? Yes! Of course it is. With God’s help and a bit of work on your part, anything is possible!
A feeling of resentment towards a spouse is a serious relationship problem. When one partner feels resentful towards the other, there can be no room for emotional intimacy to spread. And since emotional intimacy leads to feeling safe and secure within a happy marriage, without it, the scenario for sustaining the relationship is poor.
If your marriage lacks emotional intimacy and if resentment towards your significant other is the norm rather than the exception, consider letting God know and then open your heart to forgiveness. God wants us to forgive. God does not want angry people walking around in this world.
Forgiveness is mentioned many places in the Bible. Consider these verses from Ephesians.
“Get rid of all bitterness, rage and anger, brawling and slander, along with every form of malice. Be kind and compassionate to one another, forgiving each other, just as in Christ God forgave you.”
Pray that God will open your heart and the heart of your partner to move towards one another even though you might not know how or you might not want to. I’m not suggesting that the path to forgiveness will be easy. Old hurts and resentments may popup occasionally, and may threaten to derail your healing. But with prayer, God’s love and your own commitment to forgiveness, you can have the marriage you deserve. Marriage is a sacred institution that deserves our highest priority.
God bless you!