The Missing Piece of a Harmonious Marriage

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The Missing Piece of a Harmonious Marriage

Sometimes marriage sounds like a symphony. Every note working together, the dynamics, the ebb and flow of rest and movement, everything working in complete harmony. And sometimes marriages sound like a piano thrown down the stairs of a 30-story building.  Regardless of effort and time, there is no harmony. I have been a musician since I was six years old, which means I have very few memories in which music was not a part of my life. I have played in countless bands, practiced thousands of hours, performed in all types of venues, and now have the privilege of playing music as part of my profession. No automatic alt text available. As a professional musician, I hear and experience a lot of moments of discord and not connecting. After doing it for a while, it’s clear when things aren’t clicking and songs just don’t sound right. Sometimes, everybody just needs to stop and tune, but most of the time, the problem lies in something more fundamental. In my years of playing, I’ve found the number one issue behind a band not playing well together, or producing discordant music, is the inability to listen to one another effectively. If I’m playing something cool that is working against what everyone else is playing, then the song is not going to work. In a way, at the heart of discord is a lack of empathy. And I find this is just as true of marriage.

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When I am feeling the discord, when things seem out of line and the music we normally make in our marriage seems off, I can almost guarantee that at least a part of that is a lack of empathy on one or both of our parts. We are not listening to each other. We are not envisioning what the other person is feeling, the pain or the excitement. We are playing with our own agenda and missing the bigger point of the song we were called to play together. Empathy in many cases is unnatural, and because its unnatural, empathy takes intention and discipline. Here are a few things that have helped me when I realize I’m not living toward my wife with empathy.

  1. Take the time to imagine what your spouse’s day was like.
  2. Listen to what your spouse is really saying.
  3. Talk about expectations in different scenarios.
  4. Ask yourself, “What sacrifice does my spouse have to make to accomplish my agenda? Is it worth it?”
  5. Start with a posture of grace instead of judgment.
  6. Remember your spouse is on your team. 

Image may contain: 2 people, people smiling Remember, one of the beautiful things about grace in marriage is that it levels the playing field. Every husband and every wife is broken and in need of grace. Being on the same level means entering into one another’s pain and knowing that God’s grace is sufficient for every moment and season.   In the Phoenix area? Join us October 13th, 2018 9am-1pm at Scottsdale Bible Church for a live Grace Filled Marriage Event. Register here:

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