“An oldie, but a goodie.” “Tried and true.” When you read these sentences, you may think of music, sports, or a home remedy. I want to ask that you look at applying them to another aspect of your life — your marriage. How are you overcoming passivity?
There are times in a marriage where you may see your spouse as the enemy, the object of your frustration and anger.
“The thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy. I came that they may have life and have it abundantly.” — John 10:10
Overcoming Passivity | What Not To Do
You’ve got it half right. There is indeed an enemy involved, but your anger may be misdirected. You see, the enemy of our souls who “seeks to steal, kill and destroy” (John 10:10) would like nothing more than to dissolve the union that God has made. By attempting to weaken your marriage, he is directly attacking the union that you and your bride pledged to uphold before God.
Let’s briefly revisit the story of Adam and Eve in the Bible. Adam lets his guard down as Eve is approached and deceived by someone else. She is intrigued enough to act in a way that she knows is inconsistent with her marriage and with God’s will. Adam, meanwhile, is passive about the temptation his wife is falling victim to Satan. Then, it is too late. He hides…isolates himself from the Creator that has provided for him so generously. But wait, he’s not done. When he is confronted, he sells Eve out to God for her behavior. Meanwhile, the real enemy slithers off. The damage was done.
A Modern Telling
I wish it were not the case, but I know that there are marriages that have fallen victim to this same “oldie, but goodie” that Satan has levied against humankind for centuries. Allow me to repackage the same story. Whether it is due to work, fitness, kid’s schedules, comfort or just plain indifference, a man starts paying less attention to his spouse. Passivity becomes the baseline for his marital commitment. Then, there is another man happy to fill that void and give her the attention that she has been missing. That attention escalates from affirmation to enjoyment, then to emotional investment and eventually physical intimacy. With the damage done and no “quick fix” available for the situation, the husband quickly isolates himself. Again, the orchestrator of the destruction slithers off, having struck yet another family.
Overcoming Passivity Today
I pray that this story isn’t relatable to you. If it isn’t, that’s great. But please be on guard for this time-tested attack that has claimed many marriages. Do not sacrifice the connection with your spouse for things that your relationship is designed to outlive. Make space for your marriage and invest in it regularly. By making Christ the center of your marriage, you will grow closer to one another as you both grow closer to Him.
However, I know that for some guys reading this, it hits way too close to home. If that is you, I urge you to avoid the isolation trap that is waiting for you. Reach out to your church, a Christian counselor, or other Christian men. Most importantly, reach out to your Heavenly Father for guidance and direction. As is the case in life, we often don’t possess the tools or knowledge to fix what is broken. Healing comes through Him.
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