How to Fill an Empty Marriage

How to Fill an Empty Marriage

One more night of feeling lonely while lying next to someone who you had hoped would be your soulmate forever. One more morning waking up frustrated, sad, and hopeless. One more day of looking for an excuse to work late. One more time of wondering how you ever let things get this far. Can you ever fill an empty marriage?

Most people get married to be happy. Or at least you expect to be happy. During the early days of your relationship the world seemed fuller, the sky brighter, and the future full of hope when you were together. But now the marriage you hoped would bring you happiness and fulfillment only seems to make your inner emptiness all the more painful.

“What can I do about an empty marriage?” is one of the most frequent questions I get asked. Wives wonder how they can extract some measure of warmth from a man who seems not to care. Husbands become frustrated and angry over a wife who seems to be a bottomless pit. It can become a sad state of affairs indeed.

In a perfect world perhaps man and woman “should” be able to fulfill each other’s needs completely. Husband and wife “should” provide an endless supply of understanding, friendship, affirmation, and intimacy – in a word, love. But too often we go to the well of our spouse’s heart to get a drink and find the well dry. Sometimes it even appears they are willing and able to provide a drink to others who are thirsty, but can’t do so for you.

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Did Christmas Disappoint You?

Did Christmas Disappoint You?

Feeling Holiday DepressionFor most of us, yesterday was Christmas. The gifts have been opened. The food has been eaten. The Christmas carols have been sung. And now it’s over.

Feeling a little let down? Did Christmas disappoint you?

Perhaps you didn’t get the gift you left a not-so-subtle hint about. Perhaps you gave someone a gift you thought would get a big response, but it bombed. Perhaps the turkey burned, or the pie you baked tasted awful.

Or maybe it’s something much deeper. Perhaps an estranged has child failed to come home – again. Perhaps shuffling children between mom’s place and dad’s place has reopened the wounds of your previously failed marriage – again. Perhaps having to deal with a loved one’s mental illness or addiction, members of an extended or step-family who you don’t like, or the new reality of life after the death of a loved one has left you only empty and spent – again.

Our hope for the perfect Christmas is almost never met. We may try to tell ourselves we don’t have unrealistic expectations, but we can’t help creating them in our mind. And every time we end up disappointed.

And most of all, the failure of reality to live up to our secret expectations leaves us disappointed in ourselves. We see all too clearly our failures as a parent, a child, a friend, or a spouse.

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Are You In The Right Church?

Are You In The Right Church?

Is church importantThere’s a wonderful gospel song that proclaims, “God’s building a church!” Yes, He certainly is. And YOU are a vital part of what He is doing. But are you in the right church?

Fortunately or unfortunately, the church is made up of people. Broken, hurting, sinful people. The cliché is true: God’s church is a hospital for sinners, not a showcase for saints.    Tweet that.

If you’re looking for the perfect church, you’ll have to wait until heaven. When all God’s children are gathered around His throne there won’t be any denominations or brands, any races, any theological differences, or anything else that divides. We will all be enraptured by His glory and grace, and lose sight of everything else including our differences.

Until then, we must use wisdom and godly discernment in knowing which church is to be our home. There are some churches where deadly viruses such as legalism, false teaching, or religious abuse make growing in grace all but impossible. Some people are church hoppers: something happens they don’t like, and they leave. Others stay in an unhealthy or destructive church out of a false sense of loyalty. Neither is God’s plan.

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5 Ways to Deal With Difficult People

5 Ways to Deal With Difficult People

Feeling UpsetInto every life some difficult people must come. These are the people who make you feel small, stupid, and powerless. They’re the ones you assume you should have a relationship with, but you cringe every time you come in contact, or communicate with them. Somehow they have a way of making you feel like YOU are the crazy one. But somehow you still have to deal with difficult people.

Your difficult person might be your boss, your coworker, a sibling, an in-law, or even a parent. It might be a friend or classmate you developed a connection with before realizing how difficult the relationship would become. Whoever it is, they feel like a thorn in your side and you wish they would just go away.

A difficult person is not simply someone who needs your help. Here are some characteristics of a truly difficult person:

  • Refuses to take responsibility for their own life, feelings, and behavior
  • Turns simple challenges into major drama
  • Continually expects you to rescue them from their own problems
  • Makes you feel guilty if you don’t do what they demand
  • Blames you for any problems in the relationship, while demanding you stay connected
  • Responds to any help you provide with a demand for more, even if they voice appreciation at first
  • Has an answer for everything, and makes sure you realize that you don’t
  • Makes you feel confused, anxious, or “crazy” after interacting with them

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4 Things To Do While Waiting

WaitingNobody likes to wait. It’s frustrating. It feels cold. And it’s easy to let a seeming delay mess with your faith.

God sees time differently than we do. When He promises something, He will fulfill it – on His timetable. I believe God understands our frustration perfectly well. But somehow He never lets that interfere with His plans.

“Then why does He promise me something and make me wait? That’s even more painful than if He had not promised me anything at all!”

Perhaps Abraham felt that way when God promised him a son, and he had to wait 25 years before Isaac was born. (Genesis 15:5-6, 21:1-2) Perhaps David felt that way when God anointed him king, but it was about 17 years in coming. (1 Samuel 16:13, 2 Samuel 5:3-4) Perhaps the children of Israel felt that way in Egypt – for 400 years! (Genesis 15:18, Exodus 12:40)

Why does God promise us things, and then make us wait? And more importantly, what are we supposed to do while waiting?

I especially like the story of David in thinking about that question. David didn’t only get older during those years between the time Samuel anointed him and when he was crowned king of Israel. It was during those waiting years that he BECAME a king. It was the running from Saul, the writing of Psalms, the learning to lead his band of followers, and the trusting in God that made David what he was.

God does not promise us things so that we can sit back and wait. God promises us things to give us the faith and motivation necessary to develop into someone who can receive that promise!     Tweet that.

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