“If your own marriage has grown stale, look in the mirror and ask God how he can use it to transform the person looking back at you. If you’ve let bitterness seize your heart, stop praying for your spouse to change and ask God to change you. Most marriages can survive temporarily ‘falling out of love.’ But you’re headed for disaster if you ever let yourself fall out of repentance.”
” … because we don’t overcome a certain sin immediately, or because one seems to keep coming back, we mentally give up because of our impatience and a refusal to wait. We imagine it must be incurable because it isn’t cured yet. While I have seen God miraculously deliver people from various addictions, it is far more common to see people lean on God as he helps them walk away from a sin. Rather than experiencing a sudden ejection of the sin, we often have to learn how to live without it. This can include fundamental Christian responses such as repentance, vigilance, discerning the motivations behind the sin’s temptation, and addressing the secondary issues that feed habitual sins. This latter approach takes hard work and cooperation with God’s Holy Spirit. There probably will be times of failure and seasons of setback. But the mature Christian will not give up; she will continue to wait for the completion of God’s work in her soul.”
“Couples don’t fall out of love so much as they fall out of repentance.”
“I wouldn’t be surprised if many marriages end in divorce largely because one or both partners are running from their own revealed weaknesses as much as they are running from something they can’t tolerate in their spouse.”
“We bring nothing to God, and He gives us everything.”
“A Christian is never dependent on the response of others to grow spiritually. It’s our own heart’s decisions that matter”
In spite of our obsession with instant results, we serve a God whose calendar moves by millennia, not minutes, and who thinks in terms of generations, not seasons. Unless we understand this about God–that he moves by millennia, not minutes–we will never understand his ways with us. Peter is very clear: “With the Lord a day is like a thousand years, and a thousand years are like a day” (2 Peter 3:8)…God’s blessings do not always come with the speed of a bullet, but rather with the slow, steady approach of a glacier…God is not merely concerned with results, but also with character–and few things produce character like learning how to wait…Waiting, for the believer, is not the futile and desperate act of those who have no other options, but rather a confident trust that eventually God will set things right.
When I grow in understanding that the Christian life involves sacrifice, I find it a little easier to let things go rather than to stew about them. I expect my faith to cost me something. Besides, our sacrifice is minuscule compared to what saints in days gone by and many people today have given and are given.