Category Archives: Respect

Pornography (Part I): From Thought to Action

Shame

Pornography is a very dangerous practice to bring into your marriage for a variety of reasons.  I will spend this and the subsequent post dissecting the destruction created when you place your own sexual desires above God’s will.  It is important to remember that every decision we make has ramifications in our relationships, marriage and family.  We will focus on seven consequences of pornography, whether you introduce it into the marriage or partake in it as your “secret sin” (Remembering that there are NO secrets from God).  Let’s have a look at the first four, shall we.

 First, it creates a fantasy problem.  We introduce other people into our mind, heart, soul, and relationship. Now there is plenty of fodder to fantasize about people other than your spouse.

 Second, there is the moral question of partaking in pornography.  The actors/models who perform in these videos or photos are damaged themselves.  Many struggle with insecurity and their own need for acceptance.  To an overwhelming degree, they come from painful pasts.  By supporting this industry, you encourage more of that behavior, as well as participate in the degradation of precious people who were created in the image of God—created for great things.

 Third, ask yourself the question, “How would I feel if I found out that my son or daughter were in a porno magazine or video?”  We can become so desensitized that we don’t even view these performers as human beings.  They all have parents too.

 Fourth, anything that you partake in has consequences.  These consequences can pass down and influence the behavior of your children.  Remember, if your children think you are okay with a certain behavior, odds are they will do it in excess.

You shall not bow down to them or worship them; for I, the Lord your God, am a jealous God, punishing the children for the sin of the fathers to the third and fourth generation of those who hate me, but showing love to a thousand generations of those who love me and keep my commandments. -Exodus 20:5-6

In what ways do you feed your sexual sin?  What exactly are you feeding? (insecurities, fear of intimacy, difficulty in communication, etc.)   Are you already reaping the consequences of your behavior?  If this is a “secret sin”, have you considered what might happen if you were exposed?  In spite of the fear and consequences, how do you justify the behavior?

If this is a hindrance in your relationships I encourage you to take it to the Lord, from Him comes strength.  There are counselors and groups that deal specifically with issues of sexual addiction.  You don’t have to take the journey alone.

We will continue our exploration of sexual sin in my next post.  Be Blessed!

©2014 Eric A. Disney, Marriage by Design

Ready to Reactivate Your Marriage? Click on the “About the Book” tab to learn more about Marriage by Design: The Keys to Create, Cultivate and Claim the Marriage You’ve Always Wanted.

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Filed under Accountability, Behavior, Character, Idolatry, Pornography, Respect, Restoration, Sexuality

“Time-Out!”

Time out

A couple once came in to see me, and early in our discussion the wife told me about her husband’s favorite coping mechanism. When the conflict reached a certain level he would simply shut down. He would turn around and leave the house without a word. He would get into his truck and drive off in anger. He would be gone for hours, sometimes staying away all night. His wife would get so frustrated, and nothing ever got resolved. I stored that information until God opened up the perfect opportunity.

A little later into our talk the wife was again sharing about how he walked out on her whenever the conversation got heated. The husband was demonstrating great frustration, and so I asked him, “Tell me, what are you feeling right know? I see a great deal of emotion.” He just shook his head. “She doesn’t know what she’s talking about. Whenever—” I got up mid-sentence and without a word stepped out of my office, closing the door behind me. I waited just outside my office for about two minutes then reentered the room and took my seat. The look on his face was intense. Every muscle in his face was pulled tight. The anger was evident. I caught a look at the wife out of the corner of my eye, and she was beaming. Paraphrased for the more sensitive readers, the husband said, “Next time, don’t even bother talking to me if you don’t want to know what I have to say!”

I paused for dramatic effect. “Now you know exactly how your wife feels every time you do the same to her.” He took it in for a second and then he got it. He understood exactly what he had been doing to his wife.

Even when it is necessary to take a time-out so that you don’t lose control and say something you shouldn’t, communication doesn’t end. Express what you are feeling: “You know, I can feel myself getting angry, and I don’t want to say something I’m going to regret. I love you, but I need to clear my head. Please give me about thirty minutes to take a walk around the block (and pray) and get myself together, and we will continue this conversation.” Partner, be gracious and allow your spouse the time they need. Don’t demand immediate resolution; you will be sorry for that decision if you do. On their return, continue the conversation and work toward a resolve.

How have your demands for “immediate resolution” to conflict been received in the past? Do you have a fear of conflict? From where does it stem? Do you think avoiding/escaping conflict benefits the relationship? What are some steps you might take to improve communication between you and your spouse?

©2014 Eric A. Disney, Marriage by Design

Ready to Reactivate Your Marriage? Click on the “About the Book” tab to learn more about Marriage by Design: The Keys to Create, Cultivate and Claim the Marriage You’ve Always Wanted. 

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Filed under Communication, Conflict Resolution, Emotions, Respect

Your Wish Is My Command…

romance

Do you want to try something novel in the bedroom? Make your romantic evening about your spouse!

Demonstrate selflessness in sex by participating in selfless nights. Start a new tradition and take turns being the giver and the recipient of the selflessness. It may go something like this. Husbands, every two weeks (or more often) set aside a night to do romantically for your wife what pleases her with no regard for your own gratification. If your wife enjoys romantic walks, kissing and snuggling on the couch, handholding, or anything else that is sexually or romantically pleasurable to her, then do it. That particular night is all about her! Wives, if your husband enjoys going to a nice dinner followed by a night of romantic sexual activity, then do it. That night is all about him!

Remember that we do not forego respect in our sexual requests of our spouse. The goal for these selfless nights is all about pleasing the other person. Being selfless pays off in dividends. As a couple, decide how often you will have these selfless nights. Incidentally, if you start with a selfless night and the spouse being honored is so touched by your display of selflessness that they would like to reward you sexually, don’t feel obligated to refuse! Often that is one of the dividends. You’ll thank me later!

Do you recognize your own selfishness with regards to your approach to sex? What are some things that you could do to demonstrate selflessness in your romantic relationship? Unsure of what actually arouses your spouse? Often it is not the same thing that turns you on. If your answer was “yes”, it’s time to have a discussion with them

©2014 Eric A. Disney, Marriage by Design

Ready to Reactivate Your Marriage? Click on the “About the Book” tab to learn more about Marriage by Design: The Keys to Create, Cultivate and Claim the Marriage You’ve Always Wanted

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Filed under Respect, Selfishness, Sexuality

Well, That Was Certainly Affirming

acknowledgement 2

One way that we can edify our loved one is through words of affirmation. Merriam-Webster defines acknowledgment as “recognition or favorable notice of an act or achievement; a declaration or avowal of one’s act or of a fact to give it validity.” An acknowledgment is considerably different from a compliment. Compliments are often shallow and fleeting. “I like your hair” or “Dinner was great” are two examples. This type of validation, although nice, doesn’t stay with us for very long. We need to go deeper with our husbands and wives. We need to identify the uniqueness of our spouse, those qualities that first drew us to them. “Thank you so much for defending me to your mother. Tonight I realized that you will protect me and our family.” “It really meant a lot to me that you supported my decision to go back to school and get my degree. I know that we are a team and that you believe in me.”

These examples go further below the surface of who we are and what our spouse really thinks of us. When it comes to acknowledging, consider the traits and characteristics that God has instilled in your spouse. Remember, these were some of the things you first found endearing. Focus on the things that exemplify and demonstrate their creation by God in His image.

Make acknowledging your spouse a regular part of your weekly activities. The more you meditate on the treasure God has given you in a spouse, the more God will reveal to you.

Were you affirmed growing up? Have you learned not to require acknowledgement? Ask yourself, do you think it would be nice to be affirmed once in a while, to know that your efforts in the relationship are appreciated? If your mate doesn’t affirm you, could it be because she doesn’t feel important to you? What do you think might happen if you took the initiative to edify your spouse?  To start, make a list of those qualities that first drew the two of you together.  Thank God, then thank your spouse for the gift he has given you in her.

©2014 Eric A. Disney, Marriage by Design

Ready to Reactivate Your Marriage? Click on the “About the Book” tab to learn more about Marriage by Design: The Keys to Create, Cultivate and Claim the Marriage You’ve Always Wanted

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Filed under Communication, Respect

She is Worth Far More Than Rubies

Value

Ladies bear with me for a moment…

Wives are called to be submissive, by virtue of their role, to their husbands, and the husbands are called to treat their wives and family as God treats him. Submission for the wife involves being a support to her husband. God knew it was necessary that Adam have a suitable helper so he fashioned one out of a part of Adam, his rib. The passage from Genesis 2:20-24 is the well-known foundation for the woman’s role. It is evident that the woman was needed to complete the man; they complement one another. She is called to be an encouraging, loving, and trusting support to her mate. She is called to show loyalty and confidence in her husband.

The biblical design for marriage is entirely countercultural as the media portrays the head of most households to be incompetent buffoons not receiving and apparently totally undeserving of the respect of either their spouse or children. Scripturally, the wife is called to do nothing to jeopardize her support of her man. Proverbs 31:10-31 addresses the character qualities necessary to fulfill this very important role, and the value of a “virtuous woman” is described in this passage as: “She is worth far more than rubies.” Men, keep that in mind, and treat them as such!

In what ways are you treating your wives as the jewels they are?

©2014 Eric A. Disney, Marriage by Design

Ready to Reactivate Your Marriage? Click on the “About the Book” tab to learn more about Marriage by Design: The Keys to Create, Cultivate and Claim the Marriage You’ve Always Wanted

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Filed under Respect, Roles