Author Archives: marriagesanctified

Are Pride & Defensiveness Hurting Your Marriage?

As a husband, I often find myself stuck in stubbornness as a result of pride. When this happens, I have trouble hearing from God, others and unfortunately, from my spouse. Husbands, can you relate?

See, I know that I am called by God to be the leader of our family, spiritually and beyond. And often, I think I am doing a great job in this role, until something occurs that helps me see the speck in my own eye. Please understand, I am not one that is overly self-critical. I don’t necessarily lack in confidence when it comes to certain things. Nor am I the guy that beats himself up too much for the daily mistakes I make. Thankfully, I know that God’s grace is sufficient. Yet, if I am being honest, sometimes I can hide behind that grace and try to ride on its coattails, rather than do a deep introspection of my own behavior and responses. That is, until God decides that these need to be exposed.

For me, nothing can expose more to me the areas in which I may be lacking, than a complaint from my wife. If my wife is feeling inadequate or she’s lacking faith, I feel like I am the one that has failed. Yet, her complaints aren’t really complaints, but merely are expressions of what she desires for and from me.

The problem is that I perceive any constructive criticism I receive from her, others, and even God, as complaints. Essentially, what I hear is that I am not good enough. That I have failed in some way. That I am not living up to what is expected of me. Yet, when I take the time to eventually bring these things to the Lord, when I choose to let down my defenses, I actually hear His truth. His truth reveals to me that I am not perfect and that I am not without sin. That I have a constant need for my Savior. This folks, is not weakness or inability. This is me, an imperfect son of the Most High, in need of His correction, no matter who He uses to show me, just how much.

I am convinced that the enemy wants me to feel “less than” and like I am doing a horrible job. And he also wants me to make sure that everyone knows that I am NOT less than and I am NOT doing a horrible job! He tempts me to shout it from the rooftops! I am innocent! I am a GREAT father and husband! What the enemy wants is for me to be prideful of what I have already done. To be able to use the good moments from the past to make up for the present. What a deception! Unfortunately, I am often a willing participant in his ploys. I want to believe that I do not need to change or grow; that I am just fine the way that I am.

Proverbs 11:2 says that “pride leads to disgrace, but with humility comes wisdom.” I never wish for my actions to lead to disgrace. I do crave wisdom from the Lord! Yet, my flesh and my upbringing often take over these desires. I can pick myself up with telling myself that I am not a bad guy. That I don’t do what other husbands do. I am doing a mighty fine job!

But if I am honest, nothing closes off conviction more than conceit.

Is it possible that God has placed my wife in my life to be the person He uses to help me along and keep me on task? Truly, I do believe He has placed her just in this place. I know He uses me to help her grow, so why wouldn’t He use her to help me grow? She always encourages me and reassures me that I am enough and that I do indeed lead our family well.

Janie and I talk a lot about sanctification. How God has used our marriage trials to set us apart, for His glory. Not everyone can air their dirty laundry and feel okay with it. But we know that we are called to do this, not to promote our growth, but to promote the growth that comes from the Lord!

We are still learning. I am still learning. It has become clear to me that humility is not a character weakness, but rather a place from which God can take the things that need strengthening into submission to Him. The antidote to defensiveness is accepting responsibility. Accepting that I am not perfect. Accepting that I will always be in need of a Savior, guiding me and growing me. And that my defensiveness should not me by response, but that, being teachable needs to be my desire.

Men, my challenge to you is that will seek the Lord in helping you grow. That you would hear your wife when she talks. Not as a complaint, but as opportunity to meet her needs and strengthen your own relationship with Christ, as well as your relationship with your spouse.

Accountability in Marriage – Podcast Episode 8

Can your spouse be your accountability partner? What does accountability outside of marriage look like? Please join us for a discussion about accountability and how it can strengthen your your relationship with your spouse and others.

Bible verses listed in order throughout the podcast:

Proverbs 27:6

Hebrews 3:13

Matthew 26:41

Ecclesiastes 4:9-10

Proverbs 16:18

Galatians 5:1

Genesis 2:18

2 Corinthians 6:14-15

Ephesians 5:11

1 Corinthians 7:4

EXTRA: Proverbs 27:17 Galatians 6:1-3

You can find our podcasts on YouTube, Spotify, Apple, and Google Podcasts every week.

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Desiring Change Within Your Spouse – Podcast Episode 7

Do you desire change within your spouse or within your marriage? Please join us for a discussion about how we can achieve the changes we desire within our marriage and improve our marital intimacy.

Bible verses listed in order throughout the podcast (NIV):

Genesis 1:27

Philippians 2:3-4

1 Corinthians 7:5

You can find our podcasts on YouTube, Spotify, Apple, and Google Podcasts every Monday.


Seasons in Marriage – Part 2- Podcast Episode 6

Just like in nature, every marriage experiences “Seasons.” Join us for part 2 of this series, Seasons in Marriage, as we uncover what the Fall and Winter seasons typically look like in a marriage. We also discuss tips for navigating these harder seasons and how to strengthen your marriage through these seasons.

Navigating the Fall and Winter Seasons in Marriage

Bible verses listed in order throughout the podcast:

Exodus 20:8-11

Mark 12:41-44

Matthew 19:26

Isaiah 40:31

Romans 8:28

Psalm 34:18

Matthew 11:28-30

You can find our podcasts on YouTube, Spotify, Apple, and Google Podcasts every Monday.


Seasons in Marriage- Part 1 – Podcast Episode 5

Just like in nature, every marriage experiences “Seasons.” In this podcast episode, we uncover what the Spring and Summer seasons typically look like in a marriage and tips for navigating these seasons and keeping your marriage strong and healthy!

You can find our podcasts on YouTube, Spotify, Apple, and Google Podcasts every Monday.

Bible verses listed in order throughout the video:

Ecclesiastes 3:1

Proverbs 16:3

2 Timothy 1:7

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Trusting God When It’s Difficult

Scripture tells us that when God calls us to do something hard, we must learn to trust Him. Trust that He is leading & protecting us. Trust that He has a good plan for our life and that He knows best.

Yet often, at the first sign of trouble, we want to give up rather than endure what is necessary to accomplish His will. Or, if we’ve been in a season of waiting for a long time for our circumstances to change, we may finally feel that we’ve finally hit our breaking point.

This is especially true when it comes to difficult seasons in our marriage. Marriage isn’t always easy. It’s plain HARD sometimes! Yet, God calls us to continue to follow His good plan for us.  If we allow ourselves to be ruled by our emotions, we will eventually find ourselves in a place of desolation.

If we want the abundant life that God promises us within our marriage, we must choose to endure through difficult seasons, trusting God through every frustrating & painful step. No matter how long it takes.

Never forget God’s faithfulness! Our hope is found in Christ alone.

Deuteronomy 31:6

So be strong and courageous! Do not be afraid and do not panic before them. For the Lord your God will personally go ahead of you. He will neither fail you nor abandon you.

Hebrews 10:36

Patient endurance is what you need now, so that you will continue to do God’s will. Then you will receive all that he has promised.

James 1:12

God blesses those who patiently endure testing and temptation. Afterward they will receive the crown of life that God has promised to those who love him

Walking by Faith, Not by Sight

There are times in marriage where so much has happened in a season of struggle that it seems total restoration is impossible. It is true that if we walk only by sight, we can only do what we SEE as possible.

But, if we walk by faith, we have the ability to DO the impossible! Walking by faith means to rely on God’s promises as part of our daily living & trusting His plan for our lives. Trusting that he hears us & sees us and is working in the background for our good.

If today you are asking God to help you restore brokenness within your marriage, put your full trust in Him. You can confidently approach God with your desire for restoration within your marriage. He hears your prayers. He wants to fulfill the desires of your heart that align with His perfect will.

Prayer: Heavenly Father, thank You for Your perfect will at work in our lives and in our marriage. Help us to trust You fully to restore the brokenness within our marriage. Restore our unity and strengthen us as a couple to love You first, so that we can love one another better. Amen.

Studying Your Spouse – Podcast Episode 4

How well do your know your spouse? Are you looking for greater wisdom, emotional intimacy and healthier conflict within your marriage? Join us for a discussion about what it means to study your spouse and discover the benefits of truly knowing your spouse.

Studying your spouse is one of the GREATEST marriage strengthening tools!

Bible Verses: Proverbs 4:7, Proverbs 15:14 , James 5:16, Colossians 3:19, James 1:5

You can find our podcasts on YouTube, Spotify, Apple, and Google Podcasts every Monday.

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Allowing Grace to Fill the Gaps

We once heard a marriage mentor tell us to ”let grace fill the gaps in your marriage.” This mindset has been so helpful in our own marriage.

Marriage consists of two imperfect, at times broken, individuals. We get something perfected, or so we think, like forgiveness within 30 minutes or tolerance to ongoing health challenges. Or, we may commit to staying on the same page with disciplining our children or what our shared finances should look like. Honestly, it could be any topic.

But, none of us are perfect. Only Jesus is. Our external circumstances can shake us to our core & even make us feel like we can’t persevere any longer.

But God..

His mercies & grace are new each day! We fall down, but we get right back up!

Often times, we must allow grace to fill the gap. Maybe we aren’t on the same page, maybe we haven’t reached a compromise yet, but if we allow grace to stand in the places where we are lacking understanding or patience, we allow God to do His work in bringing us back together.

I often think about how much God has to put up with me; my disobedience and my lack of faith & trust. Yet, thankfully, he is merciful with me. If Jesus is our example, let’s follow that example!

Lamentations 3:22-23 NLT

22 The faithful love of the Lord never ends!
    His mercies never cease.
23 Great is his faithfulness;
    his mercies begin afresh each morning.

Grace wins every time!
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