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Marital Moments

Every  marriage will  have its rough  places.  Some  of  them are  easily  overcome while others  become  major  obstacles  in  the relationship.  In recent  sessions  of Marital  Moments,  I  have focused  on "Potholes On The Marital  Highway". Last  time I  discussed an extremely  painful lesson  called the Sad Intrusion.  The account of the difficult marriage of Rachel and Jacob found in the book of Genesis serves as a bold example of what  a marriage should not be or become.  Instead  of living  happily  ever  after  their home  was scarred by the  "other woman" in  their marriage.  In the last lesson, I wrote about the horrible effects  of an affair.  I must state  once again  that  adultery and  fornication  exacts a price too great  to pay.  It takes a  toil on the home like  nothing else.  Previously I gave some  advice for  the Unfaithful  Partner  and  today  I  intend to offer  some practical  advice  for  the Wronged Partner.  (1) Confront Openly The Affair.   Don't  sweep it under the rug and pretend it does  not exist.  The  offending partner must  not  be allowed  to continue  his  or  her  affair  without realizing  the  high  cost  of such  action.  The marriage is worth  fighting for  with  all your might.  Pray much about the confron-tation,  choose wisely the time you wish to  confront the straying spouse, and  pick the location in  which to deal with the affair.  (2) Express Tough Love.  You  may love  the offending  partner with  all your heart and  sincerely seek to  continue the marriage.  However,  you cannot,  and you must not,  allow  an  affair to continue. Tough  love says, "I love  you  to much to allow  this to go on another day.  Make your  choice.  You  can't  have  me and  her  or  him."   Tough love  often  causes the  one  who has  failed  to realize  the  mistake and  count the cost  of ending the relationship.  Many  times they  simple chose to  walk away and  end the marriage. Tough  love says  I  will  not  continually  be  made  a fool of  and  I  will not con-stantly put  my welfare and  health in jeopardy from  sexually transmitted diseases. (3) Seek  Counseling  If  Possible.  The  time and  advice of a godly counselor is invaluable  in  helping to  heal the  broken relationship.  Sadly, to  many  times one partner will  not seek  advice out of shame,  fear,  rejection, or pride.   Many times they have not ended the  relationship and they  know that a  counselor will  sharply confront them.  (4) Be  Willing To  Forgive  And Go  Forward.  If the unfaithful spouse has repented to God and  immediately stops the affair,  and if  he / she  has sincerely  and  deeply apologized  for  the error of  their ways,  then  be  willing  to forgive.  I know that the  hurt and the scars will  remain.  The past can be forgiven but it cannot be forgotten.  However,  you can chose not to dwell on the failures of yesterday.  If you  both are  willing,  your home can become stronger than  before. Trust  God  to  help  you  overcome  the  painful  and difficult  days of  unfaithful-ness.  I  know that  He is  able to  help  you  succeed.

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