If you’ve raised children or are in the midst of raising them, you’ve probably thought this phrase a time or two. When Manuel and I have conflict, I ask it of myself, sometimes weeping before the Lord, grateful for His faithfulness and everlasting love. I’ve been reading in Numbers as the Israelites wander through the desert. God declares often about the stubborn hearts of His children. And we are His children too.

I was perusing through my photos on my phone. I do not know from what I took a screen shot of the following words. I do not even know who Ryan and Selena are, but I do know that what they say is correct. Rather than paraphrasing it, I will share it below.  I’m grateful this life is just a journey; it means we will one day be done. One day we will be finished faith walking and one day stand in His presence to know by sight what we have hoped for. This is a glorious time of year, but it does bring with it stresses that affect our focus, vision and purpose.

My prayer is that this exhortation will lead us all to greater repentance of self in our marriages. It is what we committed to, made vows to do when we said I DO.

"When two individuals commit to spending their lives together, side-by-side, and in the same house, the first and most persistent opposition to the health of their marriage will always be their self-centeredness.  Marriage is an epic, endless clash of wills…but it doesn’t have to stay that way! If self-centeredness is the sickness  (and it is), then the Gospel is the cure.  We need God’s grace to deliver us from our sin- sanctifying us daily- so we may learn to love selflessly. When, in marriage, each person begins to grasp the gravity and importance of selfless love, they’ll begin to experience the weight of their own self-centeredness lift off their shoulders.    May our marriages be marked by mutually selfless love that is fueled by the inexhaustible life of God in Christ."
Stay Fierce, Ryan and Selena

We are in a battle for our marriages, Satan wants to win. May we as couples embrace the selfless love of the Gospel, the selfless love of Christ towards our spouses—not just to have better marriages, but that our marriages will in fact reflect Christ to those watching—our children, our neighbors…those who question what difference does Christ make in a marriage?

by Patti Calderon

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