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Monday, October 21, 2013

How would your marriage be different if your husband or wife never, ever doubted your love?

 During my recent travels I have been reading one of the best marriage books I have read in a long time. Grace Filled Marriage by Dr. Tim Kimmel. This guy really gets grace! You need to get this book. (If you click on the book image at right to get it through my affiliate link, you'll help support this ministry)

There are too many great things about this book to share in a single blog post, but what I can say is that Dr. Kimmel does a masterful job of linking the grace we receive in Christ to the grace we should live in marriage. It's a concept I wholeheartedly believe in but that I've struggled over the years to make clear. He does a great job explaining it in clear and simple terms.

Rather than giving you a broad overview of the book, I'm going to pick a single chapter and expound in some detail on this critical piece of understanding how grace works in marriage. The chapter is titled, "Grace Gives You a Secure Love."

Three Core Human Needs

Dr. Kimmel explains that every human being is wired for a three basic needs.
  • Security
  • Significance
  • Strength

It's probably not an exhaustive list, and I might have chosen different terms or a different set of core needs, but the author does a great job defending and explaining his choices. Chapter 4, which I'm going to dig into, deals with the first of these needs.

Are You and Your Spouse Secure in Love?

"The primary way our heart feels secure is when we know we are loved. No doubts, no misgivings, no shadowlands where second-guessing and fear play games with our confidence. Among other things, Christ died for us so we can know once and for all that we are completely, ultimately, and profoundly loved." (p. 63)

This is kind of security in love is a tough place to get to in marriage. It's a tough place to get to even with God! So many of us wonder about God's love and grace. Is it really as good and relentless and enduring as the Bible says? Does he really have these powerful positive emotions toward me? All the time? Of course, the answer is an unqualified, "Yes!" Yet, we still doubt.

So much more difficult is it to believe in the unrelenting love of our spouse. But just imagine for a minute what your marriage would be like if your husband or wife never, ever doubted that you deeply loved him or her! What if you never doubted that you too were loved just as deeply? How delightful would it be to do everything out of the celebration of the love you know you already share instead of out of  trying to earn it.

Dr. Kimmel gives three ways in which this need for security in love can be met by each other in marriage.

  1. Acceptance of who they are at the core of their being
  2. Caring about the things they care about - shared interest and shared honor
  3. Consistently show affection

I'm actually going to cover each of these three in separate posts, so be sure to come back and check in the next few days. Better yet, just sign up to get my posts by email.

Meanwhile, give some thought to this idea of how your marriage might be different if you were really, truly secure in the love of your spouse. And what if your spouse was absolutely secure in your love? Wouldn't it do wonders for your marriage?

In the comments, answer these two question: What percentage of the time do you think your husband or wife feels completely certain of your love? What percentage of the time do you feel completely certain of your spouses love?


Nancy Lehman said...

Getting to the place of
accepting my husband,
and loving him for who he is ,
ushered in the transformation of our marriage – for ME!
I believe that it was a gift for him too.
(And it only took about 17 years…)

I cannot answer your question about percentages.
But I can say that it is now the foundation
of how we approach each other
- it is the basis for our on-going, dependable, tender affection,
- it gives us the safety to discuss
and even argue about difficult things,
with the sure knowledge that it doesn’t change the facts
that we love, accept and want each other.

Anonymous said...

"The chapter is titled, "Grace Gives You a Secure Love."

I'm looking forward to this. I've found that with myself, when I choose to be selfish, the result is insecurity of Darrell's love. However, when I give grace - I am definitely more secure.

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