- Avoid the “shoulda, coulda, woulda”. If you embrace the regret of getting married, you will start to resent your spouse. That resentment will show up in how you think about your spouse and interact with your spouse. You married who you married, and God wants you to honor the commitment that you made to Him when you said “I do” to your spouse.
- Show your spouse the love of God. Make the commitment to love your spouse with a 1 Corinthians 13 love. Avoid retaliating against your spouse and withholding marriage rights from your spouse. Show your spouse what forgiveness looks like. Your behavior is more persuasive than your words (1 Peter 3:1-2).
- Pray for yourself, your spouse, and your marriage. Our natural urge is to try to fix our spouse. However, we must remember that we can’t fix another person. We have to allow God to move in that person’s life. We also have to remember that we are also imperfect. Just because you are faithful to God, that doesn’t mean that you are the perfect spouse. Both of you need the power of God working on you and within you.
- Invite your spouse to worship and church-related activities outside of worship. As your spouse gets to know other Christians, his or her heart may soften. Although you are married to your spouse, you may not be the one that God uses to reach your spouse. Activities outside of worship may be more appealing to your spouse than attending a worship service. However, you never know unless you ask.
- Focus on your areas of agreement with your spouse. Continue to enjoy the things that you both enjoy. Dream together, travel together, date your mate. Emphasis the things you love about your spouse and focus on the good qualities in your spouse.
- Teach your children your values, but do not turn them against your spouse. Even if your spouse is not a Christian or is not faithful to God, your children still need to honor your spouse.
What do you do when your spouse isn’t faithful? Now that I have your attention, let me clarify. What do you do when your spouse is not faithful to God? How do you handle it when your spouse is not a part of the body of Christ, or is no longer committed to Christ? There are several ways a person can find himself or herself in a marriage where the spouse is not faithful to God. It may be a case where a person marries someone who is not a Christian. It could be that neither person was a Christian when they got married, and one obeys the gospel. Perhaps both people were Christians and one decides that he or she no longer wants to attend worship consistently, nor live under the lordship of Christ in their daily walk. It could be that the two of you were Christians in name only when you got married, but later in your marriage one of you decides to rededicate your life to living for Christ. While there's no one-size-fits-all formula that will instantly revolutionize a mismatched marriage, there are principles that can contribute to the health of your relationship.
Minister Ross' creativity, wisdom, and insight have inspired community, church and corporate audiences throughout the United States.