LEARN SECRETS OF A SUCCESSFUL MARRIAGE
Love is always patient and kind. It is never jealous. Love is never boastful nor conceited. It is never rude nor selfish. It does not take offense. It is not resentful.
With those two little words, a married couple sets off on a lifelong journey of love and commitment. Even the most blissfully happy couples will tell you, however, that marriage is hard work. These husbands and wives don’t just coast through life on a wave or romance and passion; they are constantly gauging the state of their relationship and how they can make it stronger.
After all, very few jobs require people to be as adept at so many things all at once: communication, financial planning, faith building, child-rearing and so much more. It’s quite a skill set marriage demands. So how do couples manage the details of married life without losing sight of the love that brought them together in the first place?
It requires a shift in perspective, away from the “everything is temporary” attitude of our culture toward an eternal mindset. Marriage can’t be viewwed as a contract, something one partner can walk away from if times get bad. Because times will get bad, at least now and then. For any marriage to work, spouses have to step into it with one absolute in mind: no matter what, we say together. From that place of certainty and security, couples can navigate the rough spots and know that they will come out safely on the other side.
So what’s the secret to a truly happy marriage? Therapist Gregory Popcak set out to answer that question in his book “The Exceptional Seven Percent: Nine Secrets of the World’s Happiest Couples.”
“Every couple’s marriage revolves around a theme, that thing to which a couple gives most of their time and emotional energy. For example, most conventional couples build their lives and marriages around either securing their basic needs, maintaining companionship and security, or finding each other’s place in the world, investing heavily in careers and social roles,” writes Popcak.
“Exceptional couples, on the other hand, while concerned with all of these to some degree, spend most of their energy working togwther to pursue the development of positive character traits, moral virtue, and spiritual growth – a theme I call a marital imperative,” he says. “In other words, exceptional couples consider their marriage to be their best hope for becoming the people they want to be at the end of their lives.”
Beyond the Big Say
Planning for a wedding can take on a life of its own. Those last few months before the big day can become a blur of flowers and music, invitations and party favors. Engaged couples often imagine that once they get through the reception, the hard part is over. But the real work has only just begun. Happily married couples will almost universally say that their relationship is successful because they work at it daily. So don’t worry so much about the colors of the dresses and the style of the cake. It will all be beautiful. Put your focus, instead, on the lifelong adventure that begins when the honeymoon is over.
A Lifetime Together?
Kathy looked around and realized most of her friends were divorced. She wanted to know if lifelong marriage was even possible anymore, so she posted a question on the Internet and received a barrage of positive comments reminding her that marrige is more than what the statistics would have us believe.
“Sharing your faith and actually living it out on a day-by-day basis is what binds you together,” Emily told her. “Over the years there are many times that you don’t necessarily feel ‘happy’ or ‘in love,’ and the sacramental bond is the only thing binding you together. There are practical ways of keeping the bond: quality communication, spending time together, sharing your thoughts and feelings, laughing and crying, loving and forgiving, and being willing to move forward and wake up tomorrow knowing that you’ll still be together in the morning.”
Quality communication. It’s at the heart of a strong marriage, but it doesn’t come easy for many couples because men and women communicate so differently. The most important thing to remember is to keep the lines of communication open, no matter what.
In the early days of a couple’s relationship, a lot of time is spent getting to know one another – likes and dislikes, hobbies and dreams. But, over time, we forget that we continually need to get to know each another anew. Sitting down for a real conversation on a regular basis is critical. Marrige experts tell couples to “date their mate.” In other words, the very things that helped you fall in love need to be rekindled week after week, year after year.
Marriage Encounter, the faith-focused program that has been known to reignite passion in even the most stagnant relationships, stresses the importance of communication. Couples are told they may not be able to control their feelings, but they can control how they react to those feelings. It comes down to an easy-to-remember motto: “Make a decision to love.” It means always keeping your spouse in mind before you say the thing that might set him or her off, or before you act in a way that is sure to cause resentment.
Of course, communication isn’t just about talking. It’s directly connected to intimacy. As with so many things, men and women often come at this subject from very different places. Women, especially after having children, are more likely to look for intimacy in the little affections that are shared in day-to-day routines –the kiss on the way out the door, the hug after a bad day, and the flowers for no reason at all. Men, on the other hand, may consider the sexual side of the relationship the place where real affection is shown.
So maintaining intimacy is about maintaining communication. Couples have to talk honestly about what each spouse needs to feel loved and appreciated. And then, even if you have very different ideas about what that means, meet somewhere in the middle and offer a little of yourself for the good of your partner.
1 Corinthian 13:4, 7-8
Love is patient: love is kind: love is not envious or boastful or arrogant or rude. It does not insist on its own way: it is not irritable or resentful: it does not rejoice in wrongdoing, but rejoices in the truth. It bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things. Love never fails…
Grounded in Faith
A true marrige is a spiritual communion between the spouses, one where God enters into the relationship as the third person. And that is what sets a sacred bond apart from a civil contract.
In a poignant reflection called “From Ashes to Easter,” Writer Maria de Lourdes Ruiz Scaperlanda writes about her own marrige struggles, recalling a time when every step of her then-seven-year marriage was “like walking in quicksand.” One day, watching her son walking alonside her husband, she saw a ‘apark of hope” and began to pray for her husband and her marriage. There was no miracle cure, she says, but over time something in the relationship began to shift.
“Almost 10 years later, nothing matters more to me – to us – than the certainty of God’s hand in our lives. And in a very real and intimate way, in our marriage, I look back on those three years when Michael and I struggled with each other… with the blaming and condemnation, and I remain in awe,” Maria wrote. “It is God’s grace that carried us through the dark night, anointing our sacramental body, and led us to the light of Love. Out of that painful brokenness, we have grown as a couple more intimate – and real – than we ever knew was possible. We are both committed to individual, daily, quiet prayer, and to consistent time praying together. We know that hope can be born from the ashes. It’s God’s promise.”
“Marrige is one way God chooses to continue our development into more patient, loving, self-sacrificing and life-giving people.” – Mary Jo Pedersen
“The vocation to marrige is a vocation to happiness which comes through holiness and sanctity.” – Archbishop Fulton J. Sheen
Communication is Key
When you’re in the throes of day-to-day life, marriage can feel more like a business partnership than a transcendent promise. Managing the family budget can become a daily battle; coordinating kids’ extracurricular activities can keep you passing like ships in the night; extended family demands can add fuel to the fire.
Finances especially can become a stumbling block for couples, as can differences in parenting styles or religious practices. He wants to buy the latest high-tech gadgets and she doesn’t see the need. She wants to visit family every holiday and he wants private family celebrations. Those may seem fairly insignificant in the grand scheme of things, but over time, left unresolved, they can lead to resentment and anger that fester continually below the surface.
Once again, it comes back to communication, those ongoing conversations about what’s best for you as a couple and as a family. As hard as it can be at times, couples have to strive to put aside blame and foster partnership instead, recognizing that differences can actually become strengths when they’re approached from a place of love.
Relationship-Building Resources for Couples (Engaged or Married)
Worlwide Marriage Encounter: Weekends and resources site: www.wwme.org
(Source: Christopher News Note 541, The Christophers, 5 Hanover Square, New York, NY 10004; Tel. 1-888-298-4050; Email: [email protected] )
Read the Other Related Articles, please click the links below:
- The True Meaning of Marriage
- The Vocation of Marriage: http://foryourmarriage.org/the-vocation-of-marriage/
- Marriage as a Covenant: http://foryourmarriage.org/marriage-as-covenant/
- Why are Married Parents are Important to Children?: http://foryourmarriage.org/married-parents-are-important-for-children/
- Do Children Really Make a Marriage Less Happy?: http://foryourmarriage.org/do-children-really-make-a-marriage-less-happy/
- Marriage: The Later Years: http://foryourmarriage.org/marriage-the-later-years/
- Humility: Foundation for Marital Happiness: http://foryourmarriage.org/humility-foundation-for-marital-happiness/
- Gratitude: Foundation for Marriage: http://foryourmarriage.org/virtue-of-gratitude/
- Four Elements of Conflict Resolution: http://foryourmarriage.org/four-elements-of-conflict-resolution/
- Overcoming Obstacles on Pornography: http://foryourmarriage.org/everymarriage/overcoming-obstacles/pornography/
- Pope John Paul II’s Theology of the Body and Marriage. To watch, please click this link: http://www.pagadiandiocese.org/?p=2273
Here-under are some articles about marriage for you to read or watch:
- Getting to know you, please click this link: http://www.pagadiandiocese.org/?p=284
- Be Positive, please click this link: http://www.pagadiandiocese.org/?p=288
- Love and Marriage, please click this link: http://www.pagadiandiocese.org/?p=292
- Endless Love – Marriage after all, please click this link: http://www.pagadiandiocese.org/?p=294
- Say it with love, please click this link: http://www.pagadiandiocese.org/?p=298
- Quality family moments, please click this link: http://www.pagadiandiocese.org/?p=300
- Secret of successful marriage, please click this link: http://www.pagadiandiocese.org/?p=302
- The vocation of marriage, please click this link: http://www.pagadiandiocese.org/?p=1968
- Marriage as Covenant, please click this link: http://www.pagadiandiocese.org/?p=1974
- Humility: Foundation for Marital Happiness, please click this link: http://www.pagadiandiocese.org/?p=1986
- Gratitude: Foundation for marriage, please click this link: http://www.pagadiandiocese.org/?p=1980
- True Meaning of marriage, please click this link: http://www.pagadiandiocese.org/?p=1972
- Marriage and incompatibility, please click this link: http://www.pagadiandiocese.org/?p=2112
- Love is a garden, please click this link: http://www.pagadiandiocese.org/?p=2116
- Three kinds of love, please click this link: http://www.pagadiandiocese.org/?p=2095
“God himself is the author of marriage” (GS 48:1). The vocation of marriage is written in the very nature of man and woman as they came from the hand of the Creator. Marriage is not a purely human institution despite the many variations it may have undergone through the centuries in different cultures, social structures, and spiritual attitudes (CCC:1603)
FBI Homosexuality. Many believe the Freemasons are simply a centuries-old charitable fraternity. However, the Catholic Church has consistently condemned Freemasonry more than any other error in its history because it promotes indifferentism, naturalism, communism, and other dangerous philosophies.
Homosexuality, the Grave Evil Presented as Good, Part 1
Homosexuality, Question and Answer Part 2
Homosexuals and Freemasons inside the Church
“The Rite of Sodomy” Homosexuality in the Roman Catholic Church
Mic’d Up “Pink Money and the Homosexual Mafia”
Michael Voris gives a series of short talks, answering questions coming in response to his talk on homosexuality in Nigeria.
In this talk from Nigeria, Michael Voris speaks about the grave evil presented as good – homosexuality. “Homosexuality refers to relations between men or between women who experience an exclusive or predominant sexual attraction toward persons of the same sex. It has taken great variety of forms through the centuries and in different cultures. Its psychological genesis remains largely unexplained. Basing itself on Sacred Scripture, which presents homosexual acts as acts of grave depravity (cf. Gen 19:1-29; Rom 1:24-27; 1 Cor 6:10; 1 Tim 1:10), tradition has always declared that ‘homosexual acts are intrinsically disordered” (CDF, Persona humana 8). They are contrary to the natural law. They close the sexual act to the gift of life. They do not proceed from a genuine affective and sexual complementarity. Under no circumstances can they be approved” (CCC: 2357).
The Cost of Abortion & Contraception Deception
Michael Voris talks an in-depth discussion of the true, financial cost of abortion and its effects to the United States. “The inalienable rights of the person must be recognized and respected by civil society and the political authority. These human rights depend neither on single individuals nor on parents; nor do they represent a concession made by society and the state; they belong to human nature and are inherent in the person by virtue of the creative act from which the person took his origin. Among such fundamental rights one should mention in this regard every human being’s right to life and physical integrity from the moment of conception until death” (CDF, Donum vitae III; CCC: 2273).
FBI Contraception Deception.
Modern man has divorced sex from procreation through his embrace of contraception. This Contraception Deception within the CatholicChurch has come about by a near total betrayal of the faithful by their shepherds and leaders.
Contraception & the New Dark Age, Part 1 by Dr. Martin Brenner
Where we are and how we got here. Join Dr. Martin Brenner for this first of a four-part series on the moral evils of contraception.
Contraception and Salvation, Part 2 by Dr. Martin Brenner
Join Dr. Martin Brenner for the second of a four-part series on the moral evils of contraception.
Contraception and Sanctification. Part 3 by Dr. Martin Brenner
Prayer and the Liturgy. Dr. Martin Brenner discusses how contraception is a detriment to our spiritual lives and marital relationships. The infallibility of the Church’s teaching on this matter is also discussed.
Contraception and Sexual Ethics. Part 4 by Dr. Martin Brenner
The Proper Practice. Dr. Martin Brenner describes the importance of spreading the message about the sexual ethic and goes into detail about the alternatives to contraception and their practices.
CIA: The Rockefeller Foundation
We are used to thinking of the Rockefellers as simply a byword for wealth, power and financial success. Perhaps we might think of them as determined businessmen or see them as great philanthropists. But the truth is far different; the Rockefeller Foundation is actively undermining the Catholic Church, and in the process, attempting to erase man’s natural orientation to the eternal.
Global Warming Unmasked
Are the environmental movements and groups simply devoted to laudable, correct stewardship of God’s creation, or do they have a more sinister, hidden agenda? Is “global warming” being used as an excuse for something far darker? Is the final goal of the liberal elites behind the push of junk science population control, eugenics and Gaia worship?
Mic’d Up “Is Contraception Killing the Church?”
This week on Mic’d Up we’ll be tackling the terrible scourge of Contraception on the Church. Michael Hichborn and Rey Flores from American Life League will join us to expose Catholic Relief Services complicity with Organizations who support contraception and to Discuss The Pill Kills Day of Action 2014. Also joining us will be Lynn Mills who will be discussing the continued prayer rally at Providence Park Hospital in the Archdiocese of Detroit because of their complicity in abortion, contraception and sterilization. Following that same thread we’ll break down the announcement from Detroit Archbishop Allen Vigneron concerning the crisis of parish closings facing Detroit. Also dropping by will be author James Kalb, to discuss the plague of pluralism on the Church’s Hierarchy.