Every wounded and broken marriage has first been compromised in the thought life of one or both partners. Thoughts were not taken captive, but given free reign in the playground of the mind.
The health and success of your marriage is directly related what you are thinking about your spouse. In fact, the Bible is very clear that your actions will follow your thoughts. (Romans 8:5) If you set your mind on things of God, your actions will reflect that. If your thinking is based on the world’s values, your desires will be driven by your thought choices.
Our challenge to every reader is to do an honest evaluation of your thoughts about your spouse for 24 hours. No one will know what you are thinking except you and God. But if you are willing, this exercise has the potential to redirect the trajectory of your marriage and inject connection, hope, joy and meaning into your relationship with your spouse.
Here are three areas to evaluate with God. Breathe a prayer right now simply asking the Spirit of truth to reveal to you the truth of your thinking.
1. Critical or Complimenting?
Do you find your thoughts gravitating toward all the things you see your spouse doing wrong? When you think about them or observe them at home, are you correcting and second guessing their actions and words? We believe that in most cases, we would say it clearer, handle it differently, or follow through better than our mate. Ultimately this kind of thinking erodes our respect and honor for our spouse and it seeps through our words and actions.
Or are your thoughts more about complimenting your spouse? Do you see the good they do and reflect on it through the day? Perhaps your thinking centers on all the things you appreciate about them in their character and giftedness.
2. Worst or best?
Some people struggle with thinking thoughts that are suspicious of their mate’s motives. Assumptions are made about their intentions. As a result many of the spouse’s actions are considered through a dark lens of doubt. We train our thinking to distrust what we hear and observe. When we think the worst, we cultivate a losing environment for our spouse.
It could be that you have developed the ability to be thinking the best. They are innocent until proven guilty. Your mate is trusted and believed in by you. When you observe something that doesn’t make sense, you don’t rush to judgment, but you immediately assume the best.
3. Fantasy or Commitment?
With the rise of romantic suggestive literature, accessible pornography, and declining moral standards in the media, there are plenty of resources to feed fantasy thinking. Daydreaming about former relationships sows seeds of curiosity, desire and “what if” scenarios. In any form, fantasy driven thinking dilutes the potency of our desire and love for our spouse.
Perhaps you have chosen to take thoughts captive so when a desire to fantasize flits through your mind you quickly reject it. You intentionally focus on thoughts of commitment. You think about growing old together. You daydream about your spouse and how you two can build your marriage even stronger.
Has God revealed any areas where you’ve allowed faulty thinking in your marriage? Resolve to change, ask for His help, and take control of your thoughts as you build your marriage!