Life comes in stages and each stage comes with its own twists and turns. What lies around the corner, no one knows but one thing that will determine our outcome is our attitude during those trying times.
Maintaining a healthy marriage is crucial as the world concentrates on the war going on in Ukraine and how the impact of this is felt all around the world.
You may not feel the direct impact in terms of living conditions or having family members who are trying to escape the war zone, but the economical effect of this is spreading across the globe and will in turn impact marriages/families.
When Covid happened, it was families that were affected the most, which resulted in a spike in break-ups/divorce rates.
This is now considered the next big social change. With the introduction of “no fault divorce” from April 2022, the number of divorce rate will increase.
Two are better than one, because they have a good return for their labor: If either of them falls down, one can help the other up.
But pity anyone who falls and has no one to help them up. Also, if two lie down together, they will keep warm. But how can one keep warm alone? Though one may be overpowered, two can defend themselves. A cord of three strands is not quickly broken.
Challenging times will not look the same for everyone but the foundation to overcoming them is the same, “Your willingness to see the good in the bad, to adapt and to hold on.”
An example of a challenging time in an economy is a recession or financial meltdown, which has a direct impact on personal finances.
Household incomes no longer rise with the cost of standard of living. Consequently, families struggle to cope in such a crisis, which could then lead to the breakdown of a marriage.
The trend shows that as the economy of a country declines, the breakdown of marriages tends to go up due to the strain of the financial impact.
This could lead to loss of income as a result of job loss, pay cut, which can then lead to loss of home or having to downsize or having to make lifestyle changes you are not accustomed to.
All these pressures tend to turn couples against each other rather than towards each other.
The marriage becomes like a pressure cooker waiting to go off and in the end one or both parties throw in the towel because of the damage.
Avoid conflict in your marriage at all cost.
If you’re going through this or have a similar situation, you need to take the following steps:
Decide Together That You Are Going To Weather The Storm Together, Not Apart
This is the time you need each other most, don’t try to play superhero by taking on the whole burden alone.
Sit and talk with your spouse.
“Two are better than one, because they have a good return for their labor: If either of them falls down, one can help the other up.
But pity anyone who falls and has no one to help them up. Also, if two lie down together, they will keep warm. But how can one keep warm alone? Though one may be overpowered, two can defend themselves. A cord of three strands is not quickly broken.”
Pray Together, Ask God To Be Your Source And To Strengthen You
With God, all things are possible.
Regardless of how bad the situation may seem, get your spouse and seek the Lord’s help in prayer.
Be assured He hears you even when all evidence points to the contrary.
Don’t just pray individually, get your spouse and agree together over the matter. Don’t allow the enemy to suggest to you that you don’t need to pray together.
The two have become one so both get on your knees and make your request known to God.
Never allow thoughts of doubt to thrive in your hearts after you’ve prayed. Keep trusting the Lord and He will grant you your heart desires as long as you’ve prayed according to His will.
Evaluate Your Current Lifestyle And Re-strategise Where Needed
List out your monthly essentials and be realistic with them and then compare them with your current outgoings.
Any outgoing that is not listed under essentials can be put on hold until things improve again. This might require you to downsize or instead of 2 cars, may have to reduce it to one if possible.
This is not the time to be thinking of maintaining a lifestyle you can’t afford all because of “what will people say” attitude. It’s a time to do what’s best for you and your family.
Don’t compare yourself with others as comparison can be dangerous to your marriage.
Don’t Allow The Pressure To Cause You To Neglect One Another
We sometimes focus on a situation for so long that we take our eyes off the things that are important.
Don’t excessively try to make up for an income reduction by overworking yourself and neglecting your spouse in the process because these things tend to lead to gaps in marriage.
Continue to date your spouse and spend time together to keep the fire burning. Once that challenging situation is over, you don’t want to have lost the most important person to you.
Don’t Allow Fear To Rule You
Fear will steal your joy; it will stop you from enjoying today by focusing on the worries of tomorrow.
Jesus said in Matthew 6:26-30,“Which one of you by worrying can add a single hour to your life?”
Don’t let worry stop you from living but rather be like David who said, “Though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil.”
Recognise and submit to the comfort, guidance and provision of God in this season.
Watch Out For Your Mental And Emotional Health
We often don’t like to talk about this because of stigma but this is very important.
Don’t allow your mind to wander into dark places which may result in depression.
Encourage yourself in the Lord and sing songs of praise to lift up your mood. Remember to speak out if you’re struggling.
Reach out for godly counsel from a godly counselor, pastor or friend.
1 Samuel 30:6
“David was greatly distressed because the men were talking of stoning him; each one was bitter in spirit because of his sons and daughters. But David found strength in the LORD his God.”
Understand That This Is A Season And Seasons Change
You need to know this is a phase and it will pass.
Don’t give up on life because of what you’re going through. There is light at the end of the tunnel.
The troubles of today do not determine tomorrow, so don’t give up!