Responding to Bad News in Marriage

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We all love to hear good news, don’t we?  My younger daughter, Alli got some REALLY GOOD NEWS this weekend; her boyfriend asked her to marry him!  The fact that he wants her for his wife was good news! My husband and I couldn’t be happier for them; this was good news to us too.  The proposal was a minute by minute plan that Andrew pulled off with the help of several of their friends.  The wedding will be next May, so there’s lots of time for planning, preparing and dreaming!  Fun times!

I pray that their marriage will be full of days and years of “good news,” but the reality is that every marriage is also made up of some situations that contain some bad news.  No one enjoys it, but it’s those tests and trials that  strengthen the relationship.  There can be the bad news of…

  • a job loss 
  • the depletion of funds
  • illness
  • pregnancy problems
  • sin issues
  • differing opinions
  • child-rearing issues
  • and so on…
What is a couple to do when bad news is the order of events for the day?  Do they pack up and each go their own way? Of course not.  Here’s my advice for myself, for Alli and any other wife who gets some bad news instead of good news in a day of marriage:

  1. Run to the Lord FIRST.  Before you do anything else, go to your Quiet place and tell the Lord what’s hurting your heart.  Psalm 55:22 Cast thy burden upon the Lord, and he shall sustain thee: he shall never suffer the righteous to be moved.
  2. Open your Bible and let the Lord speak Truth to you. Write down what He tells you. Psalm 119:76 Let, I pray thee, thy merciful kindness be for my comfort, according to thy word unto thy servant.
  3. Keep the issue to yourself if it’s a problem with your husband (unless we’re talking about abuse). Don’t go call your mom, your sister or friend and spill all. Let love cover it.  
  4. Do a loving deed for your husband – even if you think he’s the one with the problem.  He’s probably feeling pretty low; do something to encourage his heart and let him know that you still love him. Proverbs 21:14a A gift in secret pacifieth anger.
A neat detail about Alli and Andrew getting engaged on March 23rd, is that on that day, my parents were celebrating their 58th anniversary!  I know that they’ve had many occasions where some “bad news” came to their marriage, but it’s my prayer that you and I, and Alli and Andrew will last 58 years because we’ve handled it in a way that brought honor to the Lord.

Have you had any good news lately?

With love,
Denise

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