READ: 1 Peter 3:1-13

Finally, be ye all of one mind, having compassion one of another, love as brethren, be pitiful, be courteous:

1 Peter 3:8

Every normal marriage has problems and challenges. It is in the interest of married couples to do all they can to prevent problems in their marriages. Preventive measures are always better than curative solutions to problems. However, the reality of the marital relationship is that no matter what you do, issues crop up that lead to problems.

If problems arise, your approach to solving them must be this:

(a) Pray about the situation.

(b) Be positive that there is a solution.

(c) Bring up the issue (in the spirit of meekness – do not be confrontational).

(d) Identify the causes (sincerely). Get to the root, not the tip of the problem.

(e) If necessary, consult your pastors.

When solving problems, be ready to compromise. There is no winner or loser in marriage; you are one flesh. When there is a clear disagreement, the husband’s decision must stand and the wife must support it even if he turns out to be wrong. However, the man must not be domineering; he must not be a dictator in his house.

Forgiveness is very essential for the survival of the marriage. Be prepared to talk frankly about the offending issue. The offended person must be willing to open up and share in love rather than nag, shout or bury things. The other party must be humble, willing to accept fault and to apologise. Do not let any problem colour your future actions.

By Dag Heward – Mills.