3 Ways to Surround Your Marriage With the Right People
Today we are sharing with you a guest post from our friend, Ted Lowe. Ted is a speaker, a blogger, and the director of MarriedPeople, the marriage division at The reThink Group (also known as Orange), a non-profit organization devoted to influencing those who influence the next generation.
After serving as the director of MarriedLife at North Point Community Church in Alpharetta, Georgia, Ted joined the Orange team to create MarriedPeople. He lives in Cumming, Georgia, with his four favorite people: his wife, Nancie, and their three children. Ted is co-author of Married People: How Your Church Can Build Marriages that Last.
For more info about Ted and MarriedPeople, visit MarriedPeople.org or join him on Facebook at facebook.com/marriedpeople or Twitter @tedlowe.
I stumbled on a 2010 article from CNN entitled, “Could you be, ‘infected’ by a friend’s divorce?” Studies reveal the answer to that question is . . . ABSOLUTELY.
James H. Fowler, professor of political science at the University of California, San Diego, said: “Not only can the risk of divorce spread from one couple to their friends or family, it can also affect relationships at least two degrees of separation away from the original couple splitting up.” The article also stated: “People who had a divorced friend were 147 percent more likely to be divorced than people whose friends’ marriages were intact.”
I’ve worked with married couples for 13 years, and I wasn’t surprised by these findings in the least. I’ve never met anyone who decided, in isolation, to get a divorce. They find people around them to agree with them that they somehow deserve or need or must get a divorce. While there are cases in which this may be true, for a large majority of couples, divorce is not the answer. Paul in Colossians 2:8 warns us this way: “See to it that no one takes you captive through hollow and deceptive philosophy, which depends on human tradition and the elemental spiritual forces of this world rather than on Christ.”
I don’t highlight this article and this passage to suggest you avoid family and friends who have gotten a divorce, although I do suggest you get marital advice from people whose marriages are winning. I highlight this article and this passage to encourage you to surround marriage with people who want your marriage to succeed. Here are three ways to surround your marriage with people who want your marriage to win:
- Get in a small group- Whether in a small group or Sunday school class, surround yourself with other couples who believe in having a growing marriage that lasts until death do you part. As a group, go through great marriage studies.
- Find a married person who is “down the road.” Find someone whose marriage you respect and buy them food, coffee, or baseball game tickets so you can pick their brain on what it takes to have a great marriage.
- Read some good stuff. There are many blogs and books that can empower and encourage your marriage. Read them on a regular basis.
Bottom-line: Be careful who speaks into your marriage; be sure you are not taken “captive through hollow and deceptive philosophy” by even well meaning friends and family. Be captive and captivated by God’s way for marriage and people who believe marriage is supposed to be great and is designed to last a lifetime.