What Did We Know about Marriage as a Six-Year-Old but Forgot as an Adult? — Part 2

In part 1, we met Jenna, the six-year-old who pleaded to her mom and dad to remember how they were once friends and to find that friendship once again. Jenna communicated well in her video what we all knew fully well when we were six and watching our mom and dad live out their marriage: marriage is about being friends and being friendly.

Here are three suggestions on being better friends with your goodwilled spouse who, like you, wants your marriage to succeed.

What Did We Know about Marriage as a Six-Year-Old but Forgot as an Adult?

1. Assume your spouse has goodwill but that their gender causes them to react in ways that do not feel like they have goodwill.

Unless your spouse is doing evil, with clear evidence, do not assume that your spouse is less interested in making the marriage a success. Gender differences are such that, for example, when a wife feels unloved, she reacts in ways that feel disrespectful to her husband.

Six-year-old Jenna apparently saw this in her mother who appeared too high and mighty over her dad. Consequently, husbands withdraw and stonewall, to separate, which causes the wife to conclude her husband is disinterested in the marriage. So, she ups her criticisms and complaints.

On the other side, when a husband feels disrespected, he reacts in ways that appear unloving to his wife, like withdrawing and stonewalling! A Crazy Cycle ensues.

What Did We Know about Marriage as a Six-Year-Old but Forgot as an Adult?—Part 1

Have we forgotten what we knew about marriage at age six?

We knew that a mommy and daddy ought to be friendly with each other because all mommies and daddies ought to be friends.

We knew that it frightened us when mommy and daddy were unfriendly with each other.

We knew that mommy and daddy obviously liked each other; otherwise they would not have married.

We knew intuitively that when they married, and because they married, they were to love and honor each other, especially in front of us.

What Did We Know about Marriage as a Six-Year-Old but Forgot as an Adult?

No-Fault Divorce Means the Kids Won’t Be Hurt, Right?

Why do I bring this up?

We have this erroneous idea that children will get over their parents’ bad marriage.

After all, some subscribe to the legal proclamation about “no-fault divorce.”

In our subconscious we have concluded that since lawmakers and society announced an end to the criminalization of breaking a wedding vow (though one can sue the butcher, the baker, and the candlestick-maker who break their contracts), neither a husband nor wife are at fault for the end of the marriage. Marriage is the most important covenant on the planet, but “stuff happens,” so let’s remove fault from terminating this sacred promise.

Parenting God’s Way, Part 1 — Love and Respect Podcast Ep. 067

Hear Emerson speak on the topic of parenting this week.  A powerful two part sermon on why we parent God’s way, this topic will be enlightening and freeing to many people.  Whether a parent in crisis, a parent who has it all together right now, a parent with grown children, or someone who is not even a parent yet, this will impact you.

Listen to the podcast HERE. Access it on iTunes HERE and on Stitcher HERE. Read the transcript HERE.

Episode 067 - Parenting Gods Way Part 1

Does Your Spouse Dictate Your Worth?

A husband dealing with the possibility of his wife leaving him reached out to me. I responded to him: “The challenge before you…is to bring your identity in Christ to your marriage instead of deriving your identity from your marriage. Though your wife will affect many of your emotions—sadness, anger, frustration, happiness, contentment—in the deepest sense your sense of worth must be derived from your walk with Christ.”

Does Your Spouse Dictate Your Worth

He wrote back:

“Before I knew God I was a young man, a son, a friend, a boyfriend, a drummer, a workout guy, so I keep falling back into those things as establishing who I am as what my worth on this earth is. When I was a younger man—about 17—my girlfriend of 3 years broke up with me. I haven’t admitted this to many people, but I considered taking my own life, until the point where I sought help in counseling. I feel like God absolutely spared me and stopped me even though I didn’t know Him yet. Years later I look back, and though I don’t feel I would do the same without my wife, it still speaks to my value system. I value being loved by my mate more than by God. I am convicted of it, and I’ve been learning how I need to change that in my life.”

We Are Thankful For You! The Fall Four

We Are Thankful For You - The Fall Four

We wanted to share four of our most popular blog posts in recent months, to read for the first time, read again, or share with someone else.

Has a conferenceblog post, or podcast impacted your marriage or family relationships? Please share it with an engaged or married couple that might benefit from this life-changing information!

Thank you for doing your part in helping us get this Love and Respect message to the world. We couldn’t do this without you!

The four blog posts below are the most popular from the last couple of months. We hope you enjoy!

-Dr. E

Are Men and Women Really That Different? Does That Explain the Craziness?

When a wife complains, “I have nothing to wear,” she means she has nothing new to wear. When a husband complains, “I have nothing to wear,” he means he has nothing clean to wear.

In this instance, both say the exact same thing. “I have nothing to wear.” However, both mean something different. Why?

Because this humorous point brings home a simple truth that we too often miss: men and women differ.

Are Men And Women Really That Different

She filters her life through her priorities and felt needs as a woman and he filters his world through his priorities and felt needs as a man.

This isn’t rocket science but political correctness blinds us to reality. Political correctness declares that because we are equal therefore we are the same.

When we both believe that we are the same and then the other proves to be different, things can get crazy. We expect the other to be like us. “If only you were like me, we’d be happy.”

Our Marriage Hit Rock Bottom – A Wife’s Story — Love and Respect Podcast Ep. 066

Listen in this week as Emerson and Jonathan discuss a wife’s story about her marriage hitting rock bottom and what she did about it.

Here are a few of her words: “We went to counseling, and that did not seem to help. My husband told me he loved me, but wasn’t attracted to me and didn’t feel “in love” with me…I decided to try one of your exercises. I told my husband why I respected him. I remember having to think about it all night.”

Listen to the podcast HERE. Access it on iTunes HERE and on Stitcher HERE. Read the transcript HERE.

Episode 066 - Our Marriage Hit Rock Bottom - A Wife's Story

Experiencing the Presence of God, Part 2

As we discussed in part one, we can fully devote ourselves to the Lord whether we are celibate and undistracted or married and distracted. The point is simply to draw near to God and begin to experience His awesome presence in your life.

When we do, good things happen.

Experiencing The Presence of God-Part2

God’s Peace

Do you want the peace of God? A wife wrote me, “I have spent years yelling and crying and getting upset and every time afterwards I always felt worse than I did before the blowup. This time when I approached my husband and attempted to show respect even though he was saying things that normally would have set me off I didn’t react, I didn’t get upset and I didn’t blow up and afterwards I felt a peace in my heart that I have never felt before. I actually felt better and much more calm. I felt like God was rewarding me and saying well done. I feel that I am doing this because in my heart I believe this is what God wants me to do but I don’t understand any of it. . . . I feel like all of this is a leap of faith for me. I don’t completely believe that God will favor me for following His Word although I have no reason to doubt Him.”

Experiencing the Presence of God, Part 1

Did you know Paul compared the married and the unmarried? Let me come back to that.

Have you heard of Brother Lawrence? He was an unmarried man who practiced the presence of God. For example,

. . . he went to his work appointed in the kitchen (for he was cook to the society). . . . That, when he began his business, he said to GOD, with a filial trust in Him, “O my GOD, since Thou art with me, and I must now, in obedience to Thy commands, apply my mind to these outward things, I beseech Thee to grant me the grace to continue in Thy Presence; and to this end do Thou prosper me with Thy assistance, receive all my works, and possess all my affections.”

Experiencing The Presence of God

As he proceeded in his work, he continued his familiar conversation with his Maker, imploring His grace, and offering to Him all his actions.

When he had finished, he examined himself how he had discharged his duty; if he found well, he returned thanks to GOD; if otherwise, he asked pardon; and without being discouraged, he set his mind right again, and continued his exercise of the presence of GOD, as if he had never deviated from it. “Thus,” said he, “by rising after my falls, and by frequently renewed acts of faith and love, I am come to a state, wherein it would be as difficult for me not to think of GOD, as it was at first to accustom myself to it.”

Does Your Spouse Dictate Your Worth as a Person? Who Determines Who You Are? — Love and Respect Podcast Ep. 065

In every marriage each spouse negatively affects the other, at least sometimes.

When on the receiving end of the negativity, we feel disappointed, sad, hurt, grieved, frustrated, angry, and even devastated. In some instances, the pain proves nearly unbearable, such as when a spouse serves us divorce papers. We are not mechanical robots without emotions. But can a spouse make us feel worthless in the core of our being, ordaining that our life has no meaning or purpose?

Join Emerson and Jonathan this week as they discuss this topic.

Listen to the podcast HERE. Access it on iTunes HERE and on Stitcher HERE.

Episode 065 Does Your Spouse Dictate Your Worth As A Person

Do You Get at the Heart of the Matter When Disciplining Your Child?

1 Kings 1:6 reads, “His father had never crossed him at any time by asking, ‘Why have you done so?'”

Do You Get at the Heart of the Matter When Disciplining Your Child?

A father took away his 16 year old son’s driving privileges for one month for reckless driving.  I asked the dad, “During that month, was your son remorseful and humble?”

The dad said, “No. He showed me nothing but anger and disrespect. I didn’t let him drive but he made my life miserable.”

The discipline did not fully work because the son’s heart did not change.

This dad should have said to his son, “What is going on in your heart? Why the disrespect?

Is This Husband 1% Right? 99% Right? 50% Right? Explain Your Answer.

Emerson Eggerichs here. In a blog I wrote entitled “My Wife Is Leaving Me,” I quote the testimony of a husband who did not hear the cry of his wife’s heart until she left. That Facebook post reached half a million people in 18 hours. Within that period we had nearly 200 comments, most of which provided great insight.

One husband’s response caught my eye, however.

Would you do me a favor? I want you to give me feedback on what you think about what he wrote below.

What Did We Know about Marriage as a Six-Year-Old but Forgot as an Adult? — Love and Respect Podcast Ep. 064

Have we forgotten what we knew about marriage at age six?

In response to a recent video that went viral, Emerson and Jonathan discuss the things we knew as children, such as, mommy and daddy ought to be friendly with each other because all mommies and daddies ought to be friends.

What we knew, why things often change, and then three practical ways friendship can enter a marriage again are discussed.

Listen to the podcast HERE. Access it on iTunes HERE and on Stitcher HERE.

Episode 064 - What Did We Know about Marriage as a Six-Year-Old but Forgot as an Adult

My Wife Has Never Complimented Me on My Looks

A husband wrote me, “My wife is beautiful. Not, Baywatch beach-bod type, but very girl-next-door beautiful. I tell her she is because I never want her to wonder how I feel about her. We have been married 12 years. We have three children. To my knowledge, my wife has never complimented me on my looks (sans the clothes I may wear from time to time). No ‘you’re handsome, good-looking, hot, cute, sexy’…without me having to prompt her by asking….  She says she loves me, and I am pretty sure she does, but how? Like a close friend? Or like a devoted husband? How can a person who you devote your life to not be somewhat pleasing to the eye?”

My Wife Has Never Complimented Me On My Looks

I told him that I appreciated his honesty about an issue that many men have thought but been afraid to voice. I replied that the good news is that most women tend to be personality oriented or relationally oriented, rather than visually oriented.

What Is Desirable in a Man?

Many women would agree with Proverbs 19:22, “What is desirable in a man is his kindness” (NASB). The Hebrew word hesed, translated here as “kindness,” points to loyalty or unfailing love. The ESV translates this as, “What is desired in a man is steadfast love,” and the God’s Word translation says, “Loyalty is desirable in a person.”

At the end of the day, what turns a woman on is not the physique of the male but his heart and soul.