Love Fights Fair: Notes from the Love Dare

I've been SLOWLY working thru the Love Dare since the start of December, and by slowly I mean one chapter every couple of days.

It's been such a humbling experience that's challenged me by uncovering so many of my prideful and selfish downfalls as a woman and wife, when I originally planned to use this as a tool to fix Nate and I as a couple. (HA)

Each chapter (day) discusses a topic about what love IS.. actively. Love is a verb. It's a choice we make in marriage every day.

Oh man.. I could go off on a tangent here about the excuse people use for ending a marriage because they simply fall in and out of love. The truth is, we DO. We are imperfect people, loving imperfect people. If love is simply based on circumstantial emotion, feeling and opinions then you better BELIEVE your feelings of love will fluctuate. But we can't choose to start OR end a marriage based on that alone. It's like building a house on a foundation of sand!

This is what sets God's solid institution of marriage apart. We are imperfect people, loving each other through our faults and imperfections to ultimately glorify God. Marriage REFINES us as individuals, putting us in sometimes HOT, fiery places that can make us BETTER if we seek Him though it. We will stand firm and come out stronger, because we started with a proper foundation.

A loving marriage can last a lifetime if you CHOOSE to love unconditionally. Guard your heart. Base your love on commitment for life, rather than fleeting feelings. If YOU pursue a true agape love (the Love of Christ) towards your spouse, then phileo and eros love (that of friendship and sexuality) will follow!

I digress :) Back to my journal notes from today's dare about fighting fair..

If a house is divided against itself, that house cannot stand. Mark 3:25

Love reminds us that our marriage is too valuable to let it self destruct. And that our love for our spouse is more important than whatever you're fighting about.

Love PROTECTS our "one-ness." It reminds you that conflict can actually be turned around for good and result in greater unity- not less.

Fight clean. Establish rules of engagement as a way of protecting each other.

There are two types of boundaries: WE and ME

We: rules you BOTH agree on that apply to any fight. Each has the right to enforce if broken.

example: NEVER mention the word divorce. Avoid bringing up past resolved issues.  No fighting in public or in front of children. Call a "time out" if escalating to a damaging level. NEVER touch each other in a harmful way. Don't go to bed angry. Agree that FAILURE is NEVER an option.

Me: rules of personal practice.

I will listen before I speak
My dear brothers and sisters, take note of this: Everyone should be quick to listen, slow to speak and slow to become angry. James 1:9

I will deal with my own issues up front and apologize first if needed
Why do you look at the speck of sawdust in your brother's eye and pay no attention to the plank in your own eye? Matthew 7:3

I will speak gently and keep my voice down, lacing speech with love
A gentle answer turns away wrath, but a harsh word stirs up anger. Proverbs 15:1

Fighting FAIR means changing our weapons, disagreeing with dignity & building bridges instead of burning them down.

LOVE itself is not a fight, but it's always worth fighting for!

Be challenged to discuss healthy rules of engagement with your spouse and resolve to abide by them. If your spouse if not ready, you must still do this yourself.

Live in harmony with one another. Do not be proud, but be willing to associate with people of low position. Do not be conceited. Romans 12:16

I hope this speaks to your heart, like it did mine.

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