After 14 years of helping couples in need as a pastor, life coach, and a Christian marriage speaker, I have come to a few conclusions about those in an unhappy marriage:
1. It is near impossible to make an unhappy person happy.
2. No husband or wife will make their spouse any happier than God can.
Though I am going to apply this principle primarily to marriage, I have had to learn to apply this as a pastor, business owner, and a friend as well. In fact, it applies to every area of our lives.
Why is this So Vital?
I believe this to be a vital teaching for the following reasons:
Many Spend their Lives Looking for Something that Does Not Exist
We were created to experience the perfect love and approval of our Heavenly Father. When this need has not been met, people strive to fill that void with everything but the love of the Father (I John 2:15 and Romans 5:5).
The lie of the world is that the greatest thing that can happen to you is to find love through a romantic relationship. If you will listen carefully to love songs and television shows, you will see that this is the case.
However, it must be understood that though a romantic relationship can be a wonderful experience, the love someone receives from their spouse pales in comparison to the love of God.
When people see that their spouse fails to make them happy, they tend to come to the wrong conclusion. That is, they tend to think one or more of the following:
I married the wrong person
This is not my soul mate
We got married for all the wrong reasons
We rushed our engagement
There is no real love between us
We have fallen out of love
Aim Small, Miss Small
I find it important to deal with this subject, because, in life, it is not that we give the wrong answers as much as we typically ask the wrong questions. And, most people in an unhappy marriage error in asking, “What should my spouse do to make me happy?”. The better question is, “Am I truly a happy person despite the behavior of my spouse?”.
If we are going to hit the right target, we must ensure that we are aiming at the correct one first. For many in an unhappy marriage, instead of focusing on what their spouse needs to do to make them happy, they will do better to first find their happiness from God alone.
Some Women will Bristle at this Post
I must confess that most receive this teaching very well. However, the ones that bristle the most at this teaching are women that have convinced themselves that they are a victim to their husband’s inconsistencies.
Interestingly enough, I have found that women in such a case often use Biblical precepts and expectations concerning their husband as almost a form of control over their men. It is also intriguing to consider that if men did the same, they would hear comments from their wives as such:
I cannot be your all in all
You have to be happy for you and not because of simply me
I am overwhelmed by what you expect out of me
I am a firm believer that men and women are not playing by the same rules in our day and age. And, I believe that this point is just another example of how true this is.