On Marriage: Choosing Your Battles

, by Christopher D. Hudson

Guest blog post by Kim Kimberling. Kim is a friend and a marriage counselor. He's releasing a book next week and I asked him if I could share this excerpt with you.

"If it is possible, as far as it depends on you, live at peace with everyone." Romans 12:18

As we rounded the curve and headed into year four of marriage, we had begun to fight about many things. We fought about what we said to each other and we fought about what we did not say to each other. We fought about what we were going to do and not do.

We fought about the money we were going to spend and the money we were going to save. Some of the fights were short-lived and some lasted days.

Most of the time I could not remember this week what we fought about last week, but the damage remained. Fight piled upon fight, and we grew further and further apart. We didnt know how to choose our battles, so we simply fought them all. Something needed to change.

Choosing your battles is a very good fight strategy, and it goes like this. When something about your spouse bothers you, you have a choice to make. If its worth addressing, you can work to resolve it — right then and there. However, there is a difference between talking it out with your spouse and fighting it out with your spouse. Thats option one.

If its a small thing, you can choose to let go of it. You just choose to not fight a battle. Congratulations!

Instead of holding on to it yourself, you can decide to turn it over to God. Some of you are thinking, “What in the world does turning it over to God mean?” Here is my take on that. I firmly believe in a God who cares about me and my life. He wants my marriage to be great, and His plan for my marriage beats my plan, big time.

God, then, is the filter I pass our conflict through. If something  that Nancy does bothers me, I can say, “Okay, God, what do I do with this? Do I respond? Do I respond now? Do I let go of it? Do I let You take care of it, knowing whatever You do will be good for me and for my marriage?”

This is not an easy step for me, especially if I am irritated or angry (and at this point, I usually am). I would much rather take matters into my own hands and then let God clean up the mess I create afterward. I can be good at this process. Yet, no matter how good that may feel in the short term, it does not feel good in the long term and never accomplishes what I want for my marriage.

If you have never tried turning something over to God, try it now. Pick out something you are struggling with and simply say, “God, I am giving this to You. I need Your help and I need Your answer. Thanks.

Now comes the hard part. Leave it with God. I know. What if He did not hear you? He did. What if He does not act as quickly as you want Him to act? His timing is perfect. What if? Stop. Leave it with Him. I promise you, He will not let you down.

I served as the agent for Kim's book and helped introduce him to my friends at Zondervan. It has been my pleasure to read early drafts of this book and I'm excited to see it release. If your marriage could use a boost, order your own copy here: http://bit.ly/7SecretsToAnAwesomeMarriage


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