For those who are interested, here are the notes from the marriage conference hubby and I attended this past weekend.
Marriage Conference 4/23/10 Robert Kurz, marriage conselor
Session One- "Communication"
1. Communicate with a spirit of Truth - Communicate with a spirit of truth, not half truths. Do not hide things from your spouse.
2.Communicate with Grace, which is undeserved favor. Speak nicely to your spouse even when you think they don't deserve it. "Let your speech be always with grace"
3. Speak with Edification- build up your spouse. Let no corrupt communication proceed from your mouth. If you don't control your speech, you are like a city with broken down walls--defenseless.
4. Speak with Optimism- "Do all things without complaining or disputing" Phil 2:14
(Have the same attitude at home as you do with others. He tells the story of staying over very late after church because he was in his office conselling church members. He helped and helped his church members while his wife and kids waited for him. His kids fell asleep at the church. When it was finally time to leave, his wife pointed out that he gives so much to others that he had nothing left for his family. He was out of balance and was treating accquaintances better than he was treating his family. He saw his fault and determined to change that. He said "It is WRONG to use all of your energy doing good things if we have no energy left for our families")
5. Communicate an attitude of Humility- When you are wrong, admit it. When you are right, shut up.
6. Communicate with unity-- meet in the middle, compromise with your spouse, don't be selfish
7. Communicate by listening- Be there for your spouse even when you don't feel like it.
Session Two-- "Why don't we pray?"
Five minutes a day of praying together, aloud, for your spouse will build a strong marriage and is a mighty weapon against satan. However, 90% of Christian families don't do this. Most of them do pray for their spouse during their personal devotions, and that is good, but if we would also daily put our hand our our spouse's head and really PRAY FOR THEM, it would be very powerful.
Most people he counsels DO want to do this, but they are busy, or their schedules conflict or whatever, there are many excuses. But we end up doing what we WANT to do and if our desire for an awesome marriage is strong enough, we will discipline ourselves and pray. You will have pain either way.........the pain of self discipline or the pain of regret.
"The mightiest weapon we have is intercessory prayer"- Robert E. Lee