I am about to change your life - ok - at least make it better. This applies to married and to single men. It’s one huge wisdom mic-drop. And, we’ve also linked to one powerful tool for all of us in this CoronaVirus Season.
This wisdom truth is a biblical pattern that has made relationships stronger since Adam and Eve. In fact, it would have saved them a lot of grief. It’s a powerful truth. And, most of us right now – need this.
We are living in an anxious and stressful season. Even when times are more “normal” it’s tough to maintain healthy relationships. Now the stress has amped up all sorts of relational issues. Some of those issues can be managed by the “iron sharpens iron” biblical imperative – but too many are being inflamed into all-out warfare. The trauma centers for abused women and children are packed. Hotlines are taking up to 300% higher volume in calls. And, it’s not just in the U.S. – it’s all over the world.
It makes sense – we’re all stressed with fear about health and the health of our loved ones, many losing jobs, being unable to pay our bills, and being isolated from our community of brotherhood, love, and support. For many of us, we haven’t hugged members of our family in weeks! And, the drumbeat of negative headlines doesn’t help.
Here’s the huge wisdom pearl. I’m not saying it’s easy – but from relationship and marriage specialists across the country – this is huge. Here it is: In a casual manner, but purposefully – ask your wife or loved one. “How are you doing?” When the response is a typical “Ok”. Push in with, “No, really, how are you? I’m feeling the stress myself.” THEN … the art of conversation is in the listening. THEN, LISTEN. And, don’t solve it. Listen. And love, and be empathetic and love, and perhaps it’s a moment for prayer or planning or just some hugs.
This powerful wisdom is also part of a deeply insightful session we had on relationships with our friend, the esteemed psychologist and author, Nancy Houston.
The strength of a marriage is determined by the ability to resist forces that try to pull the partners apart. The strength of a family depends on the character of its members to withstand the pressures to tear it apart.
As the leader of your family and community, you have to be cultivating your inner strength. Because it’s this inner strength that will empower you to not just survive this season but thrive in this season and the one to come.
In the interview with Nancy, among many key relational topics we covered were how to protect and strengthen the relationship with your wife and children during this time. Grab your wife or loved one and watch it together now.