By the time most people arrive at the point where they feel it’s time to attend a Christian marriage retreat, they are often times already in a state of war with their spouse. That is to say, they have reached a point where they feel like their spouse has become “the enemy.” They find themselves arguing all the time, disagreeing on most everything, and finding it hard even to love their spouse.
It is sad that people allow their relationships to reach this point before they decide to take action. But, positive action taken late is better than never taking any positive steps at all to repair your marriage. So let’s take a look at what it takes to get a marriage back on track, even if it is at, or near the point of no return.
In a Marriage, Battles Are Never Won…
In a marriage battles are never won, there is no such thing as a single victor. The only way that a battle can end successfully in a marriage, is if it ends with a truce, a peace treaty and a reconciliation.
Arriving at a peaceful conclusion might seem like a difficult or impossible feat to you right now if you are in the middle of a difficult battle with your spouse. But a truce is the beginning of a healthy reconciliation, and a truce can only come about if one person is willing to swallow their pride, accept responsibility for their part in the disagreement and take action to initiate that truce.
Love With Agape Love…
In the heat of the battle taking this bold step towards peace and reconciliation might seem as if you are giving up and giving in, but nothing could be farther from the truth. The Bible makes it clear in Matthew 5:44 when Jesus tells his followers that they are not just love those who love them, but that they are also to love even their enemies.
The kind of love that Jesus is talking about here is called agape love. The term “Agape Love” is a Greek term which refers to the covenant love of God for humans, as well as the human reciprocal love for God. Practicing agape love doesn’t always mean that you have warm fuzzy feelings. Agape love is not the love given because someone has done something nice for you and you naturally want to reciprocate. It is not a love based on attraction, desire, or even sympathy. Agape love is a love given in mercy, it is a love given through grace. It is an act of benevolence. Agape love requires a mindset that is willing to forgive wrongs that have been committed against you, and leave all vengeance and retribution to God.
Agape love requires us to not return evil for evil, hate for hate and insult for insult. But rather when someone offends us, we respond with blessings, forgiveness and love.
This does not mean that we give up all our rights in a relationship. It doesn’t mean that we never allow our voice and our opinion to be heard. And it does not mean that we need to become a push-over.
Practicing agape love simply means we continue to engage as the giver, and continue to reach out in love over and over again even if we receive little in return.
Before you think that practicing such a love is impossible, remember that God loved us even while we were yet sinners, and he sent his son Jesus Christ to die for us, even when we hated him.
That is agape love. That is the God kind of love. And that is how we are to love everyone… even our enemies.
To learn more about how you can restore true love, friendship and intimacy in your marriage, visit our main website at http://www.ChristianMarriageRetreats.net or call us at 406-253-6427