Guess what? If you are married, at some point, the two of you will fight! It’s inevitable. It happens to all of us and most of our fights start because of our differences. As much as a newlywed couple may think they are a lot alike, all of us are different. It starts with male/female differences and the list goes on. Yet, being different is not the problem. Think about this: If the two of you were exactly alike, at some point don’t you think you might get bored?
Our differences make marriage interesting. I believe they were God’s design in the first place. Here is the key: We either embrace our differences and grow together or we spend our married life fighting over them. I spent a lot of time in the early years of our marriage trying to change Nancy. I loved her a lot but I thought if she would just change a few things our lives together would be so much better. I remember thinking, “Why won’t she change?” Today I can look back and be thankful that she did not let me script her life. I needed to learn how to accept the differences and see that her perspective on things was not wrong - just different!
Embracing the differences in our spouse is not always easy. Most couples even find that some of the things they liked in their spouse before marriage now bother them in marriage. For example, a person that was very organized before marriage may come off as controlling in marriage. It is usually not that they changed. It’s just that when you live with someone in a close intimate relationship, things can begin to look and feel different, and conflict happens. Conflict in itself is not bad, it’s how we handle it that is good or bad. So, what do we do?
Here are some of the things that I think will help:
Make a list of all the differences that are an issue for you with your spouse.
One at a time, ask God to help you see the value in the difference and to embrace it.
Ask God to let you see your spouse through His eyes.
Pray for your spouse every day.
If you do the above every day for three months, you will be amazed at what God does in you and in your marriage!
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