Is Your Marriage Safe

devotional_is your marriage safe.jpgOver the years of doing marriage intensives for couples in crisis, we've seen many husbands and wives who don’t feel “safe.”  We're not just talking about being physical safety. There are lots of ways we can feel unsafe.  So here are 4 safe spaces we want to work on creating in our marriages.
Physical Safety:  Your spouse needs to know, without doubt, that you’re committed to not inflicting any kind of physical pain or harm to him or her.  Physical abuse jeopardizes any relationship.  Physical safety builds trust and is foundational to all safety issues.
Emotional Safety:  Your marriage needs to be a place where you can express and explore your feelings without the threat of ridicule or rejection.  Allow each other to vent freely once in a while without the fear of retaliation.  Promise each other to guard against verbal attacks, ridicule, and criticism that will squash true feelings and harbor unhealthy hidden fears that will erode intimacy.
Sexual Safety:  physical intimacy is built on trust.  Whenever a spouse feels used or misused sexually … trust and intimacy crumble.  There is no place for selfishness in this area of marriage.  Commit to each other that you will never sacrifice your long-term satisfaction and closeness for selfish actions that carelessly hurt and objectify your spouse.
Spiritual Safety:  We don’t feel safe in this area if we believe one spouse is more spiritual than the other.  Resist the prideful thought that I am more spiritual than my spouse.  Ask the question as a couple:  How can we help each other grow more in our relationship with God?  Then workout a plan together to get there … it will take patience and sacrifice … but the results will be the “greatest depth of intimacy” there is.
The reality is that none of these safe spaces can be created perfectly.  But the couple who works hard to make their marriage safe will be far better for it.  The Bible assures us that perfect love cast out all fear!