You are an imperfect human being. You are married to an imperfect human being. Two imperfect people who have to figure out money, make parenting decisions, be sexually intimate, take care of a home, make meals, do laundry, deal with car maintenance, and simply live in the same place, are destined to find all that imperfect togetherness challenging. When we bump into imperfection—our own and our spouse’s—we often don’t handle it so well. This is when many of our fades begin. However, we have some valuable tools available to us that most of us aren’t using often enough, if at all.
The concept of God-tools comes from 2 Corinthians 10:3–6 in The Message Bible, “The world is unprincipled. It’s dog-eat-dog out there! The world doesn’t fight fair. But we don’t live or fight our battles that way—never have and never will. The tools of our trade aren’t for marketing or manipulation, but they are for demolishing that entire massively corrupt culture. We use our powerful God-tools for smashing warped philosophies, tearing down barriers erected against the truth of God, fitting every loose thought and emotion and impulse into the structure of life shaped by Christ. Our tools are ready at hand for clearing the ground of every obstruction and building lives of obedience into maturity.”
We believe something we call the “Perfection Infection” is a warped philosophy that most of us impose upon our marriage. When we have unrealistic expectations of each other and of marriage in general, this sets the stage for disappointment, discouragement, and disillusionment. When we unfairly compare our spouse to others or even to our “imagined spouse,” this warped philosophy prepares the soil of our heart for seeds of discontentment to be sown.
Our God-tools help us tear down the barriers we erect in our own hearts. That’s honestly where most marriage issues begin and end . . . in the heart. The condition of our heart is directly connected to the condition of our marriage.
In the same way a plumber needs specific tools to complete a plumbing job, husbands and wives need specific tools to manage their communication, emotions, and everyday, imperfect interactions with each other. For the next eight days, we’ll build our marriage toolbox so we have the tools we need to handle “for better or for worse” and everything in between.
‘We are destroying speculations and every lofty thing raised up against the knowledge of God, and we are taking every thought captive to the obedience of Christ, and we are ready to punish all disobedience, whenever your obedience is complete. ‘ 2 Corinthians 10:5-6
What about you? Can you identify any places where the “Perfection Infection” has caused disappointment, discouragement, and disillusionment in your heart? Can you see where you’ve had unrealistic expectations and unfair comparisons concerning your spouse?