Grace-what is grace? Apply grace? It sounds like something pouring out over something like gravy. Does grace make things taste better? Yuck, my brain cannot imagine pouring or apply grace on my spouse. It might back fire on me. If I give grace then he/she will run all over me. I will be a doormat to step on and that hurts me. When I think on that it makes me fearful. I am scared and I do not know if this will work for me.
Yes, it can seem scary given that many times our spouses are not mature spiritually and often times their reactions and dealings with us are based on their own pain and hurt. It can be good to express your own worries of letting go and letting God take over in your marriage. It can be scary especially if you are new to this “grace” thing. Sometimes grace is not mutually given. Sometimes our spouses do not return the good we give to them. Often grace is not receptacle. That is what usually stops us. We are human and it is scary having to be the one who always goes first; always looks the other way; and always forgives.
Oh, the difficulties of understanding grace that beautiful essence of God himself. The grace of God through Jesus Christ, available to me to you, and even to our spouses; grace-favor we do not deserve. But with God’s help, your marriage can heal from the fears and mature in grace and love.
In order for grace to appear yes, forgiveness must be the forerunner. Marriages are full of hurts, let downs, misunderstandings, cross words and sometimes just plain ole meanness. Two people who want their own selfish way. Two partners who are really not partnering at all. It is for necessity that we learn to apply a graceful nature to our marriages.
Our supreme example of grace is the act of mercy God gave us through the death of Jesus. We obtained favor unmerited. We did nothing neither good nor righteous to receive God’s mercy, yet he bestowed this mercy through grace-handed grace and mercy to us each by his own hands. Grace is unmerited favor.
We are not God, but we can demonstrate his characteristics by doing so with our actions. We can by faith apply grace in our marriages. Grace is another word for love and love covers a multitude of wrong doings. Without grace love will grow sick and useless in our marriages. We experience sickness in our marriage much like a virus makes a body sick. Causing our marriages to be pale and have tempers. These viruses cause spouses to withdraw from each other; raise their voices to one another; belittling each other with their words, actions and body language. Also the viruses cause spouses to see more negative than is really there.
Grace and Love is the cure for a sick marriage. Grace makes all things new, alive and fresh. Grace allows us to look at our spouse with honor not disdain. Look for their good characteristics, their positive manners, their good qualities of honor. Over look the little things that may annoy you. Grace makes a loving list of the good qualities. Grace helps you look at that list daily. Remind yourself of the good things of your spouse. Grace looks for the good in others. With grace spouses are able to tell each other how much they enjoy the good qualities and how they love them regardless of the little negative things that pop of every now and then.
Grace comes in the form of Love Talk. Love talking listens to your spouse with an ear to hear more than they actually say. Listen to learn more about your spouse. When you listen to learn you will be seeking the good things so that you can understand the good in your spouse. You will start to understand them better. Your love talk is more about listening than talking. Love talking validates your spouse. Grace says you are loved no matter what. Grace validates the love of God on your life. Grace in a marriage looks to validate and uplift your spouse. Grace will help you to seek to understand. Grace rises above the bad and the ugly and says I really want to understand what is making you fearful. I want to erase your fears and walk beside you. We can do this together.
Grace helps spouses to listen to each other on purpose. God applies grace to you on purpose because he loves you. He wants a relationship with you knowing that you will mess up. But God never gives up on you. He always sees the “good” you have to offer. Grace is that simple. Look for the good in your marriage and lift up your spouse with good thoughts, good actions and pleasant body language. Lift up your spouse in prayer. You will begin to see grace living in your marriage.
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Debbie Kessler loves her husband, Wally Kessler. She is a southern girl who loves Jesus and loves building up people to do Good Works of Love.