When you think of the term stubbornly married what comes to mind? To us it means digging in and not letting anything separate you. It’s a matter of remembering Jesus’ words when He said, “What God has put together, let no man separate.”
There are all kinds of things that can separate us in our marriages. And that can include us. We can give up and allow our minds and actions to go in directions where they shouldn’t. Here are a few of the ways we can separate from our spouse:
• We can allow other people to cause a divide between us.
This can be our relatives, friends, co-workers, and even our children. We give more of our time, and priority to them, giving our spouse the leftovers. This can include Facebook time. It’s a time zapper. You know, we didn’t make a vow to any of them on our wedding day. God did not tell us to cleave to any of them. If we allow others to cause an emotional and/or physical separation, we are violating our promises to God and to our spouse. It’s important to be stubbornly marriage and NOT allow this separation.
• We can allow other things to cause a separation between us, and our spouse.
This can include a long line of “things.” We’re talking about cars, boats, houses, hobbies, and yes, media. There is a growing number of divorces that are taking place because of Facebook hookups. We allow “creeping separateness” to take over the amount of time and energy we give to our spouse. Other things and priorities take over what we should save for our spouse. Remember your vow?
• Many times our own stubbornness overrides our determination to grow our marriage.
We allow ourselves to separate in commitment and in “treating others as more important than ourselves.” It’s very easy to get caught up in “right fighting.”
“A right-fighter is someone who struggles to win arguments, even if they doubt their own view. A right-fighter is someone who gets overly emotional or angry when people don’t agree with their opinions. Someone who is a right-fighter insists on having the last word in an argument or refuses to back down no matter what.” (From the Familyresource.com article, “Are You a Right Fighter?”)
We’re reminded of the scripture:
• “A fool finds no pleasure in understanding but delights in airing his own opinions.” (Proverbs 18:2)
• “Do you see a man wise in his own eyes? There is more hope for a fool than for him.” (Proverbs 26:12)
We see this in action when BEING right is more important than DOING what’s right. Don’t allow your personal stubbornness to override your partnership. And here’s a difficult one:
• We allow tragedies to separate us.
It can be past abuses, or it can be the death or chronic illness of a loved one that causes us to look away from our spouse. We don’t understand his or her actions or reactions, so we let toxic thinking creep in and push our spouse away. It’s during those times that we ESPECIALLY need to sink into the commitment of being stubbornly married. The enemy of our faith delights in taking advantage of times of confusion and hurt. Don’t give up that foothold. Turn TOWARDS each other and vow not to give in or give up.
We can go on and on with the many ways a separation can take hold in our marriage relationships. But the point is to line your stubbornness up with God’s. If it isn’t His way of doing things, then it shouldn’t be yours. Don’t allow your work, play, media or other choices, your children, relatives, friends, etc. to separate you. Be stubbornly married in finding ways to always come together. Give each other priority as you promised when you made your wedding vows.
Be Stubbornly Married
We agree with what Kelsey Robertson wrote on this issue:
“Love needs to be stubborn. Love is not always easy, so the key to real love is being too stubborn to let it ever go away. If you do not stubbornly insist on loving your spouse, then it is easy for that love to slip away. Love must be stubborn to survive.”
Ask God for wisdom to learn whatever you need to overcome relationship obstacles that come before you. Be stubborn in doing whatever it takes to be the spouse God wants you to be. Stubbornly hold onto God and onto each other. That’s what it is to be stubbornly married.
We pray for you as you hold onto your sacred marriage commitment.