Sermons

Summary: 3 of 5 on Home and Family. This message focuses on fighting fair. Eph 4 is the main text. Bill Brian was the source of several points.

Heaven Help the Home

Marathon Marriage – Oct 2

Security & Significance – Oct 9

Fighting Fair – Oct 16

Taming the Tongue – Oct 23

Leading & Loving – Oct 30

Marathon Marriage – Oct 2

Romance

Reality

Regret

Renewal

Security and Significance – Oct 9

Proposition 1: Our two most basic human needs are for security and significance.

Security and Significance – Oct 9

Proposition 2: Our most basic problem in life is that we look to the wrong source for our security and significance.

Security and Significance – Oct 9

Proposition 3: Our most basic responsibility is to encourage our mates, teach our children, and show our friends that security and significance comes from God by how we live with and love them.

Fighting Fair

A conflict free marriage is a oxymoron.

Every mar¬ried couple must learn how to deal with differences in ways that suit their style, values, and relationship.

This is a major challenge of mod¬ern marriage. Disputes are no longer settled by the father who knows best, a council of elders, or folk tradition.

Women hold equal power and not all differences can be compromised, mediated, or settled by taking turns.

If he wants no children and she wants one, you can’t have half a child. And you can’t walk away from the conflict. Someone has to prevail or you have to find a way to agree. You can’t live in his hometown in California and your hometown in Boston and be in the same household. Nor is it a solution to live midway in Chicago.

You have to face the issue squarely, contain the anger and the disappointment that follows, and solve it peaceably to maintain the marriage. And you have to face the fact that this or another conflict will reappear. It’s an ongoing, challenging process that can be the key to a good marriage or the road to divorce.

Whenever you have relationships -- really any kind of relationship -- you’re going to have conflict. Most marriages are marked by periodic skirmishes -- and occasionally by an all out war. Marital warfare may take place in the trenches of hostility or moodiness. Some battles are surprise assaults. Others are cold wars of stoic silence.

Sometimes, this warfare takes place years down the road -- and other times it can happen on the wedding night. I recently read about a true story that happened in Waukesha, Wisconsin

Mr. and Mrs. Christopher Snyder had a beautiful June wedding. The problems started when the wedding was over while they were trying to decide where they should go to celebrate. They couldn’t agree and, seeing as how they had been drinking since early afternoon, the bride got mad and “gashed her husband’s head open with her wedding ring.” The police were eventually called because someone in the bar thought the groom had been stabbed.

When the bride met the police, she was a little belligerent and was arrested for disorderly conduct. They later found the groom wandering along a nearby street in search of a hospital. The police took him to see his wife at the jail. Shortly after being released, the lovebirds began arguing again and he hit her in the face. He was arrested this time for domestic battery and, since she started kicking the police officers for interrupting their honeymoon, she was arrested a second time for disorderly conduct.

They spent their wedding night in separate cells and were released the next morning.

Most of us enter marriage with undeveloped conflict resolution skills. We don’t really know how to have a good fight. That reminds me of a husband who said, that after 50 years of marriage, he and his wife have had only one fight. When asked what his secret was he said, “The fight started on our honeymoon and I’m still waiting for it to end!”

Couples fight about money, goals, vacations, kids, work, house, leisure time, cars, in-laws, drinking, health problems, church, and even pets.

This morning I want to learn 4 conflict resolution skills from Ephesians 4.

These four ground rules should keep you from landing in jail.

Be Honest

25 So you must stop telling lies. Tell each other the truth, because we all belong to each other in the same body

Ephesians 5:25

The first skill is to be honest. The word “stop” means to discard, to strip off, to cast away. It’s translated as “put off”. God is telling us to get rid of any falsehood and to start or “put on” truth telling. This verse really speaks about relationships in the church between believers. Christians are to be truth tellers, not people who lie to one another. If you are serious about being a Christ-follower, then you must be honest.

But what is true in the body should be even more so in the one body of a marriage. Remember – two shall become one!

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