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Series: Luis Palau | Preserving your Marriage

On “Reaching your World with Luis Palau” this week, Luis talks about how to protect your marriage from harmful influences. He warns us of the dangers we can face in this closest of relationships, and how we can counter those with God’s help. 

God Wants to Make You More Loving Friday, October 23, 2020

What’s the longest period of time that you and your closest loved one have been apart? A week? A month? A year? Two years? Career-dominated jobs abound in the military, firefighting, professional sports, and many other fields of endeavor.

It was no different for the twelve disciples of Jesus. Jesus called Peter and Andrew, James and John, and each of the other apostles to follow Him—and didn’t wait around for an answer. It was either instant yes or automatic no.
What was Jesus trying to teach them during those three years of life together? A lot! But mostly, He showed them what the marvelous, amazing mercy, grace and love of God looks like in flesh and blood.

As we read the Gospels, sometimes we miss the elbows and fist pumps, laughter and ribbing, humor and sarcasm of Jesus. Sometimes we miss the bone-tired walks, the leisurely meals, the beachside BBQs. Everything, everything, Jesus said and did was done a hundred percent in love.

If I’m the average of the five people with whom I spend the most time, I want the Lord to be one of them! I hope the same is true for you. Cut other things, if need be, but please don’t skimp on your time with the Lord.

This is Andrew Palau.

How to Protect your Marriage - 4 Thursday, October 22, 2020

We’re all weak. We all fail. Our marriages stand or fall depending on how we respond to our spouses’ shortcomings. So, watch out for unforgiving attitudes.
Maybe your spouse has hurt you deeply by unreasonable expectations or an ungodly focus. Or maybe your spouse is unforgiving toward you. No matter. Decide in your heart today to “forgive as the Lord forgave you,” Colossians 3:13. How has He forgiven us? First, sacrificially — by dying for us on the cross. Second, completely — by washing away all our sins. Third, eternally — by remembering our iniquities no more [Hebrews 10:17].

After 60 years of marriage, my wife Pat and I still find that practicing forgiveness is a vital key to our relationship. We’ve had to forgive each other a lot. That doesn’t mean we go around all day long saying, “Forgive me, forgive me.” For us, at least, forgiveness is more an attitude. When I lose my temper, for instance, Pat often tells me by the way she looks and acts that she has forgiven me. Sometimes, of course, I need to actually say: “I realize I’ve hurt you — will you please forgive me?” Now, I want to encourage you to do the same in your own marriage.

This is Luis Palau.

How to Protect your Marriage - 3 Wednesday, October 21, 2020

The first three typical underlying reasons for divorce are first unreasonable expectations, secondly ungodly focus, and thirdly uncontrolled passions.
As much as we in the Western world pride ourselves on our technological and scientific advances, we are incredibly impulsive.

One of our most uncontrolled passions is spending. We have bought into a distorted materialistic philosophy that says, “Get more out of life.” So we spend our lives trying to accumulate things, often to the neglect of people – the people in our marriages.

Another uncontrolled passion is sensualism. We are made callous by the immorality we see in the media. A little girl sent me a simple letter written in pencil: “Dear Luis Palau: Please will you pray for my daddy because he left me and my mommy. Please ask God to help Daddy realize what he has done wrong leaving me alone.” Her dad left for a younger woman. Now this seven-year-old and her mom must suffer terrible loneliness, deep heartache, financial devastation, and much more.

Other uncontrolled passions are: drunkenness, drugs, shouting, and cursing.
The Lord warns, “Above all else, guard your heart, for it is the wellspring of life,” (Proverbs 4:23). And Paul states: “I can do all things through Him who strengthens me.” Yes!

This is Luis Palau.

How to Protect your Marriage - 2 Tuesday, October 20, 2020

Did you know that Satan whispers excuses into the ears of men and women—even Christians—trying to persuade them to divorce their spouses? His rationalizations sound convincing to people going through difficulties. His rationalizations, however, always lead to an ungodly focus.

I love the song lyric, “Only Jesus can satisfy the soul.” If our relationship with Jesus isn’t right, it’s no wonder that we feel unfulfilled and discontent. We may blame our marriages when in reality our spiritual poverty is the problem.
A marriage is in danger whenever the partners maintain a wrong center of focus. Some focus on their spouses, others on their children, and too many of us on ourselves. The only truly satisfying focus, however, is Jesus Christ. He said, “Whoever believes in me…streams of living water will flow from within him.” (John 7:38)

Jesus alone has the power to restore marital relationships and give you “a crown of beauty instead of ashes, the oil of gladness instead of mourning, and a garment of praise instead of a spirit of despair,” Isaiah 61:3. Ask Him to do that in your own heart and life in coming days, weeks, and months. Then thank Him for every blessing He gives.

This is Luis Palau.

How to Protect your Marriage - 1 Monday, October 19, 2020

To protect your marriage now or in the future, I encourage you to learn how to identify and overcome the typical underlying reasons for divorce. The first is unreasonable expectations. Ironically, while marriages in this generation are failing in historically unprecedented proportions, our expectations for marriage have never been higher. Couples expect completely unrealistic things from marriage. In a word, they want total fulfillment. They expect marriage to meet all their sexual, emotional, and personal needs and desires. Of course, such expectations eventually lead to disaster.

No spouse can totally fulfill our every need, let alone our desires and fantasies and dreams. No husband can give his wife everything she wants, and no wife can do that for her husband. In marriage we help, encourage and bless one another, but we can’t fulfill each other. Sometimes the key to improving our marriages is bringing our expectations down to earth. God commands in Ephesians 5:33 that a man “must love his wife…and a wife must respect her husband.”

God wants to revolutionize your marriage. He wants to bless you and your spouse. I challenge you to pray. When you pray, ask God for wisdom [James 1:5] to help you embrace more reasonable expectations. Then thank Him for every added joy along the way.

This is Luis Palau.

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