- Pursue peace with all people, and holiness, without which no one will see the Lord:
- looking carefully lest anyone fall short of the grace of God; lest any root of bitterness springing up cause trouble, and by this many become defiled;
- lest there be any fornicator or profane person like Esau, who for one morsel of food sold his birthright.
- For you know that afterward, when he wanted to inherit the blessing, he was rejected, for he found no place for repentance, though he sought it diligently with tears.
Signs of Pending Doom
I’m not a psychologist. But I have seen and read about many signs of pending doom for a marriage.
Let me correct that statement. The marriage isn’t doomed. Marriage is a promise. It is a moral obligation that people willingly say they are willing to accept. A promise to deliver. A promise to love. And the person who makes that promise is either ethical in keeping it or not.
So, what we’re trying to save is not the marriage, but the joy, the pleasant feelings, the trust, the sensation of love. We should all be willing to honor the wedding vows whether the feelings are there or not. But it’s a lot easier if our feelings for each other are good.
Very Serious Marital Danger Signs
Are you concerned about some of the following?
- Physical expressions of anger such as violence?
- Cursing and swearing at each other?
- Threatening abandonment or revenge?
- Insults to the very soul or identity of the other person?
- Attempts to control through trickery, bullying, manipulation, public shaming?
- Porn addiction?
- Drunkenness or drug abuse?
- Shaming each other before the children, family, friends, or public?
- Complaining and sharing personal family problems with members of the opposite sex?
When Bob Newhart played the part of a deadpan comic psychologist, he gave some excellent advice.
The humor in that advice is that the patient had an unreasonable fear or phobia of being buried alive. And when the audience expected a highly educated analysis of this malady, Newhart calmly told the lady he had two words that would help her cure her malady. When she affirmed her desire to know what those two words were that would help her overcome this problem, the psychologist’s fact got read with anger and he yelled, “STOP IT!!!”.
Of course, people with psychological issues cannot always just snap out of their maladies. But if you saw someone getting ready to burn a million dollars or burn down a mansion or a Rolls Royce car, it might seem more reasonable to yell “Stop it!”
In the same way, when two spouses or parents are burning down their family with this kind of chosen behavior, they may not feel like stopping. They may be fighting back in response to many emotional injuries they have felt for many years.
But if you want to save the family and the marriage for the love of your kids, sometimes you have to decide to take revenge off the table and remove it as an option.
Good Cures and Bad Cures
To implement the good cures, you have to stop trusting the bad cures. Bad cures will finish off your family. They can leave your children growing up in a broken family. There are reasons you and your spouse said your wedding vows. And nobody should make those vows without intending to make sufficient sacrifices to keep those vows.
One of those sacrifices is to refuse to do those bad behaviors. Now, you may not be able to make that choice for your spouse, but you can make it for yourself. And you can help your family understand why you chose not to engage in those behaviors any longer.
It may challenge your spouse to be more fair, responsible, and kind as well.
Or it may not.
Either way, won’t you and your family be better off?