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Marital Moments

Today's  Martial Moment  will focus  on a new  topic:  Potholes  On The  Marital Highway.  While most marriages run smoothly, there are, however, some relation-ships that find the road bumpy and difficult.  It is those difficult and trying times of life  that  I  want  to  address  in  this  Marital  Moment.  The  interesting  marriage of Rachel  and Jacob found in the book of  Genesis  will provide the Biblical  back-ground.  If there  was ever a  marriage  in the Bible that  was marked with potholes and bumps  it was  this marriage.  At  best they  could be  described  as a  troubled family  and at worst they  would exemplify a dysfunctional family.  Perhaps  many of us can identify with them.  If so, then it helps to know that  through it all we can make it.  That  God is  there for us,  with us, and  to help us.  Several things about Rachel and Jacob gain our attention as we begin our study.  The first pothole I find in  their  marital harmony is  The Unwanted Past.   Jacob had a difficult past.   He had stolen his brother's birthright, he lied,  and he deceived his father.  Like all  hu- mans, Jacob reaped a  harvest of all the  bad things he had done in life.  The words of Galatians 6:7 ring true and prophetic for all humanity:  "Be not deceived;  God is not mocked:  for  whatsoever  a man sowth,  that shall  he also reap."   Poor Jacob was  deceived by his  father-in-law on his  wedding night.  He met a man more de-ceptive  than  himself and Jacob  was  now reaping  the consequences  of his  past. Sadly, the  baggage  of the past,  the skeletons  in  the closest,  and  the secrets  of yesterday come back to haunt you.  The sexually  active past before marriage. The criminal  record.  The drug and  alcohol abuse.  The  affair  after  marriage.  These things, and many others, spoil the present moment and rob you of the joy and hap-piness that a marriage brings.  Let's  look at several ways to  deal with this  difficult and discouraging pothole on the marital highway. (1) The Past Must Be Confessed To God.  I John 1:9 states that, "If  we confess our sins, He is  faithful and  just to forgive us our sins, and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness".  Confession means that  we agree with God  about our  sins and that  we  immediately abandon  them. Proverbs 28:13 says, "He that covereth  his sins shall not prosper:  but whoso con-fesseth  and  forsaketh them shall  have mercy".   Once you  have confessed  your sins then  accept God's  forgiveness.  Don't  live in the past.  Realized that  you are forgiven by the most important being in the universe: Jehovah God.  (2) Refuse To Allow  The Past to Destroy The Present. You can do  nothing  about yesterday.  It cannot be changed no matter  how much you may try or you  may want to  correct the past.  You cannot live your life constantly looking backward.  Living in the past is like driving a car  looking through the rear  view mirror rather than moving ahead like  you  should.  The  wisdom  of  Philippians 3:13  is greatly needed.  There  the Bible  states, "Forgetting  those things  which  are behind, and  reaching forth  unto those  things which  are before".   (3)  Communicate  With  Your Husband / Wife. Many problems  can be solved and would  be solved if  only you would  talk about them.  You  must,  however,  be cautious  about  communicating  about  the  past. Some things are best  untold and  untouched.  You  must use  great wisdom  when shinning  the  light on yesterday. (4)  Seek Godly Counseling.  Some  problems can only  be solved  with  the assistance of  wise and godly  counselors.  Keep in  mind that, no  matter  what the past was like, you  are responsible for the present.  Your past may explain your present but it is not an excuse for present behavior.  You are responsible  for all the  thoughts,  words, and  actions that you do each day.  What you do  with the  past is a choice.  You can chose to live in it and let it  destroy the present or release it and go forward.  It is your choice.  Remember, The Unwanted Past  may exist for many  people but it  must not  become a major Pothole On The Marital  Highway.   

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