No one wants their marriage to be bad, yet so many marriages continue to languish in various states of dissatisfaction, irritability, and outright hostility. What is it that keeps so many spouses wishing they had a better marriage, but never getting one? Often, people blame it on their spouse or their circumstances, but that approach leaves them feeling stuck and powerless.
It’s so easy to waste your marriage on things that don’t benefit you or your spouse. The problem is, you often don’t realize it until it’s too late. So below are 5 contributors to a wasted marriage that you need to watch for. (To help you remember them, they’re form the acronym W.A.S.T.E.)
People who know me know I am not a handyman. I’m someone who can turn a simple fifteen minute fix-it job into an all day nightmare. I am the guy from whom repair people make their money.
So with that in mind, here’s the story…
It was around eight in the evening and my wife was in the laundry room when I heard these words. “Oh no! That’s just great!” Though I didn’t want to, I asked, “What’s wrong?”
Some of my favorite movies (much to my wife’s dismay) are “The Matrix” trilogy of movies. They never get old to me. I can watch them over and over and still find new thing in them that I didn’t see before.
This happened a while back when I was watching “The Matrix Reloaded (2003). In this movie, the hero (Neo) has been summoned by someone who is supposedly on Neo’s side…Seraph. But when Neo gets there, Seraph begins to fight with him. When the fight is over, Neo asks Seraph why, and Seraph replies, “You do not truly know someone until you fight them.”
One day, I was out walking and noticed a man with a metal detector methodically covering a patch of ground. Slowly and diligently, he combed first one patch of ground and then another, occasionally stooping to dig up a coin or small trinket. After an hour, he finally packed up his gear and left.
As I walked, I found myself wondering, “Why would someone put so much time, effort, and resources into looking for what seems to be such a small pay off?” Still, he seemed content and generally happy…as if the act of looking for treasure produced its own value.
Expectations. We all have expectations before we get married. We have expectations about what marriage will be like. We have expectations about how our spouse will act. We have expectations that tend to become the standard by which we measure and evaluate the quality of our marriage. We expect things like…
Many years ago, I was in Paris as part of a mission trip. While there, we had some free time and a group of us went to the Louvre. The Louvre houses some of the most famous art work in the world. Pieces like the Venus de Milo and and the statue of the winged, headless angel called Winged Victory.
But of all the artwork in the Louvre, the one I wanted to see the most was Leonardo da Vinci’s painting, the Mona Lisa. I had seen pictures of the Mona Lisa all my life, and now I was finally going to see it for myself!
As a pastoral counselor, I’m expected to draw on Scripture and good clinical practices in order to help couples improve their marriage. But the truth is, you can find great nuggets of marital wisdom in a variety of places. The other day, I found one of those nuggets of marital wisdom on my iTunes playlist.
I often tell people that marriage can be like a bull ride. Here’s what I mean by that…
In the beginning, when the bull rider gets on the bull, they look good, feel confident, and are surrounded by a lot of supporters. Those supporters speak words of encouragement, slap them on the back, and tell them, “You can do this!”
All this is like a bride and groom on their wedding day.
We’re in the middle of some crazy weather patterns. It’s in the lower 80’s one day, and then the lower 30’s the next. It’s like going through all the seasons in the span of a week or two.
Marriages go through seasons, and each season requires something different from spouses. To have a long and happy marriage, you must learn to navigate seven seasons…