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Issues and Solutions regarding Love
I have selected Communication, Compassion, Compromise, Commitment, and Christ as five foundations of a great marriage. I believe they all work together to bring harmony and love for couples in marriage.
There is a great contrast between love and lust. Lust is more of a sexual or greedy feeling, while love is more of a secure and content filled feeling we get from giving and receiving. Lust does not have to be something sexual, it can be a greedy desire for more money and power, etc. But for this article, I am using it in its sexual context.
1 Corinthians 13:4-7 sums up the common traits and variances of love and lust.
LOVE is kind = considerate, caring, giving, thoughtful, understanding
Lust is envy = jealous, greed, spite, resentment,
LOVE is not proud = humble, submissive, meek, modest
I think most great marriages are based upon principled acts of love. What does that mean? Real love is a verb, which means to love others takes effort. Principled acts of love can actually grow deeper and richer with the age of the marriage, especially if the marriage has been led under the wisdom of God. A principled act of love is all about choosing to love the person you married and doing it with wisdom.
Love must be sincere. Hate what is evil; cling to what is good. Be devoted to one another in brotherly love. Honor one another above yourselves. Romans 12:9, 10 NIV
Some people have this preconceived idea that love is something that makes you feel all giddy and euphoric inside. In reality, how many couples after having been married five or ten years still share that euphoric feeling with each other? So in retrospect when that preconceived or learned idea gets squashed out in left field, which will happen, people tend to think they are not "in love" with their spouse anymore. And the next thing you know they are looking for a new partner. But if love is a choice, which I believe it is, and we choose to do those things that are loving it will make us feel more loving too.
What happens to couples in marriage who believe love should feel a certain way? Society has taught that
Ask Angie: I cannot seem to find love for my husband. We have been through difficult times and we were not able to work together on anything. There were months when we did not speak to each other and just went on with our lives without communication. I have been hurt so much…. It is wrong but I cannot find forgiveness for him nor seem to be able to detach with love. Our children see the problem we have and now have issues in their lives since we did not show them a good marriage/ family…I have been working on my spirituality so much but still find that my heart is heavy.
Ask Angie: Dear Angie, It's me again. I was reading the stories about the women who are married to alcoholics. My husband is not an alcoholic though he displays the same kind of behaviors. Life with him is unbearable at times. He told me last night, again, that most of the time he does not want to be married, and during those times he treats me like
Marriage Guidance: I will address the issues that are italicized above. Both of these women are experiencing similar issues in their marriage. Although one is having difficulty loving her husband, the other's husband is having difficulty loving his wife. Please print out this marriage column and give it to your husbands. Read through the article resources together. Talk about the questions at the end of the articles. Marriage needs both husband and wife to be willing to put in the effort.
Has your spouse told you they weren't "in love" with you anymore? Well do I have news for you. The saying "I love you but I'm not in love with you anymore" is a worn out cliché. It's not possible to "fall out of love" because you weren't "in love" to begin with. The excuse "I'm not in love with you anymore" is nonsensical. Let me tell you why.
There is no such emotional condition as falling out of love; it's a justification for doing whatever you are planning on doing. It's a way to let your spouse down easy. What you're really feeling and should be saying is "I don't want to love you anymore". It usually means that the attitude towards your spouse and marriage is not what it once was. Perhaps you are talking yourself into having an affair or perhaps you have already had an affair.
The person who says "I'm not in love with you anymore" is searching for a feeling.
The marriage has stopped giving them a feeling they want and expect to have. It is an attitude that builds up after months and or years of a lifeless marriage - a marriage that has no intimacy. This is why quality time spent together (intimacy) is more important than sex in a marriage. Not that sex isn't important, because it is, but that sex IS NOT INTIMACY. Sex may be a part of intimacy but it is not the whole picture.
Intimacy can be as simple as playing a board game or planting seeds together in your garden; or intimacy can be as complex as working together in a business or getting involved in a hobby with your spouse. But couples aren't doing any of these things together anymore! They have drifted apart, each doing their own thing. When couples stop doing things together they lose the intimate bond between them they once shared when they were first married.
Did you know that our thoughts and beliefs become actions over time? The more we think about being with other people outside of our marriage, the more these thoughts will become our actions. Knowing this then, the first step to conquer infidelity is not to have the desires within our mind in the first place. Easier said than done? Not really.
We desire others sexually because we have been conditioned into believing its ok to do so – it's a mindset. We have been trained to desire others sexually at a young age, and we have been conditioned into believing it's ok to look at scantily dressed women and men. Our conscience may even tell us that it's wrong to actually commit the act of sex outside of marriage, but does our conscience tell us that the desire is wrong?
The bible definitely lets us know that desiring others sexually is wrong because it leads to sin, so then what is the problem? The problem is we aren't going to the root of the problem. The root of sexual lust is in how we think towards human beings. So then to stop the desire we only have to change the way we think about others. Are we really respecting others in the way that Christ has taught us to? If we truly respect another person then we should have the attitude to not think about desiring them lustfully and disrespecting them in any way.
You were called to be free. But do not use your freedom to indulge in the sinful nature; rather, serve one another in love. The entire law is summed up in a single command: "Love you neighbor as yourself." Galatians 5:13-14
** Are you having less sex with your spouse or stopped having sex with your spouse because you are looking at pornography?
** Are unhealthy emotions overtaking your thoughts and controlling the outcome of your actions?
** Have you tried to quit looking at porn but can’t?
If you answered yes to any one of these then you are addicted. Anytime we are addicted to something it means we are under its control and have become a slave to it. Does being addicted to porn mean you are a bad person? Not necessarily.
What it means is that you have a sexual temptation that you desire more than you desire the goodness of self brought on by God. You are allowing the sin to overwrite the natural goodness of your character. Satan is pulling at your flesh to look at porn, while principles and mores are put on hold somewhere in your mind.
Bad people remain in their addiction all the while getting worse spiritually and emotionally. Bad people don’t even try to come out of their addiction but rather revel in it and eventually get worse in their sinful behavior. Bad people don’t know they are lost, they believe they are following the right path already. Bad people are literally holding hands with Satan.
Some of you might be playing a game of tug and war because your conscience is having a difficult time dealing with your actions. This is the flesh (physical and emotional feelings) fighting with the spiritual aspects of your nature. The spiritual aspect of self knows right from wrong. Which way are you tugging? Did you fall into temptation again?
Emotions play a big role in our life. They are active and alive twenty-four hours a day, even in our dreams. Emotions literally tell us what to do with our marriage, family, job, career, self, and how we love others. If we don’t control the course that our emotions run, we might be heading down the road towards destruction.
Are you allowing emotions to control your life?
When was the last time you got angry? What do you do when your friend turns their back on you? What do you do when your spouse disrespects you? What do you do when your children continue to misbehave?
What happens if your emotions tell you that you don't love your spouse anymore? What are you going to do? Do you let jealousy and resentment tell you what to do in certain circumstances?
Before we can understand the full potential of our self and our emotions we need to understand a little bit about who we are, and why we do and say the things we do. How do we handle our selves with certain issues and particular circumstances?
What do we do when conflict rears its ugly head in our marriage? We get emotional, right? We lash out with anger, or we clam up in resentment, or express our self improperly. Are we letting our emotions rule our marriage, our self, and our life?
“I hate Valentine’s Day. I’m divorced, and I don’t have a boyfriend.” Jenny had stopped me in the parking lot of the gym to lament her situation.
“At one time, I also dreaded Valentine’s Day but not anymore.”
Jenny raised her brows and said, “What changed?”
“Let me share with you what my mentors taught me. If I want flowers and candy, I buy them.”
She raised her brows again but said nothing.
“I don’t want to be in a restaurant at dinnertime on Valentine’s Day, but I can go out to breakfast and lunch or order dinner to go.
That made Jenny smile. I told her about the times I scheduled a massage or bought a new outfit on sale. She nodded.
Without question, my greatest struggle and crisis of faith is, "AM I LOVED?" This question releases its evil first cousin; "WILL I BE LOVED?" Is being loved and loving contingent upon if I do some proverbial duty, service, behavior, performance enough and well enough? Close on their heels is "can I really love" without impure motive or impunity?
The only correct answer to these questions is simply God is Love.
What marvelous love the Father has extended to us! Just look at it - we're called children of God! That's who we really are.(1 John 3:1a, Msg)
Look deeply into the glory of love! Having begun in Father's unmerited, unconditional, unending love; it elicits the following response!
My beloved friends let us continue to love each other since love comes from God. Everyone who loves is born of God and experiences a relationship with God. 8 The person who refuses to love doesn't know the first thing about God, because God is love - so you can't know him if you don't love. 9 This is how God showed his love for us: God sent his only Son into the world so we might live through him. 10 This is the kind of love we are talking about - not that we once upon a time loved God, but that he loved us and sent his Son as a sacrifice to clear away our sins and the damage they've done to our relationship with God. 11 My dear, dear friends, if God loved us like this, we certainly ought to love each other. 12 No one has seen God, ever. But if we love one another, God dwells deeply within us, and his love becomes complete in us - perfect love! (1 John 4:7-12, Msg)