I saw a quote not long ago that read:
“Marriage is made up of two really good forgivers.”
No truer words were ever spoken, I mused to myself. My husband and I will celebrate our 19th wedding anniversary this June and we can certainly attest to this. We’ve shared some thrilling experiences together, but we’ve also endured some pretty fierce trials. But, that’s life, isn’t it? God has always been at the helm of this ship called marriage, and with His help, we’ve grown immensely. I think we’d both agree that it was during the darkest nights that our relationship was strengthened. When we didn’t have the answers to life’s questions, it was then that we not only cried out to God for help, but also turned to each other for strength.
No genuine, lasting relationship is without opportunity to forgive. Men and women are so different. And, we are created to be so. We view the world differently. We view our family differently. We’re just polar opposites. Sometimes just realizing this can eliminate so many arguments. Too often, I think, we slip into the mindset that our spouse should view life through identical lenses when God created us to be unique individuals. This is what keeps life fresh and exciting. So, instead of warring against our differences, we really must learn to celebrate them! They are the key components of what attracts our spouse to us to begin with.
The first cousin to forgiveness is humility and this is a godly character trait we must learn to cultivate in our relationships, especially our marriages. Sometimes it’s difficult to admit fault in a situation, but when we learn to humble ourselves and apologize, we open ourselves to experience grace. God always rewards a humble attitude and your relationship with your spouse will grow because of it. When we value our relationship enough to invest humility and forgiveness, it will yield endless returns.
I Corinthians 13 says that love keeps no record of wrongs and we would be wise to adhere to this standard. It will serve you and your relationship well. Forgive. No, it doesn’t let the other person “off the hook”, but it does free you up on the inside and allows God to work in your relationship. I challenge you today to let it go. Let it all go. The petty and trivial stuff, the big stuff…all of the baggage. Just dump it at the foot of the Cross. The peace of God will flood your soul and your spirit will be much lighter. Focus on the big picture. And pray. Pray not only for your spouse and changes that you might like to see, but pray for yourself as well. Ask God to make you the spouse He designed you to be … loving, devoted, forgiving, supportive and one who is sold out for Christ!
“And when ye stand praying, forgive, if ye have ought against any: that your Father also which is in heaven may forgive you your trespasses.” ~ Mark 11:25