Tuesday, November 15, 2011


Yesterday at our church's small group class, a interesting question was asked. What advice would you give to the soon-to-be married or the newly married?

I was amazed at the response. They didn't feel that it was good idea to tell the truth. Marriage is hard and is filled with a lot of hard work. (I struggle with this attitude - topic for another time. Lying to the next generation maybe why we have a generation gap!)

Here is the advice I wished I had received. Stop judging everything your spouse does by your family's "we've always done things this way." Just because we've done it this way doesn't make it the only way for something to be done right.

Here is an example from very early in my marriage. Where does mustard go when it's put away? His mother put it in the cabinet. My mother always refrigerated ours. Who was right?

This could be a big conflict. Could you image the fights over the condiment of mustard? Unfortunately, it is things like this that are the beginning of a lot of martial troubles. No, not mustard but little petty things.

The label on the mustard bottle does not claim that it needs refrigeration. We put the mustard on the cabinet shelf. Then I had to confess that I prefer my mustard cold. Luckily, he didn't have a preference. Now, you will find the mustard in our refrigerator.  

It seems like a little thing but communication is really the key. We need to express our wants, needs, and preferences but we need to listen to their wants, needs, and preferences and that's when compromise is necessary. Beware the need to control everything around us. It will make us miserable.


Leann Holland