The theme of last week’s marriage retreat was Worth Fighting For. This comes out of the recognition that marriages which pulse for the glory of God don’t come easy. We have to fight for God to be central and the cross to loom large and love to be intentionally sweet.
Jay Adams writes, “Most marriages develop their characteristic pattern, not by design, but by drift. Courses of least resistance, following one’s own desires in time develop into patterns, but you will never drift into God’s pattern. It will come only by repentance, by prayerful understanding and by a conscious decision to follow it. That decision must be backed by a continued daily awareness of what you are doing and a repetitive effort to realize God’s design in all you do. You must choose between drift and decision. Decide now to reshape your marriage according to God’s great plan set forth in the pattern of Christ and His church. If you do, your marriage will be blessed more and more as it grows, not drifts in the shape designed by God.”
Here are the discussion questions from each session. If you have not started doing so already, take some unhurried time to go over these as a husband and wife.
Questions from “God’s Original Intention”
- How often do you think of God’s original intention when thinking about your marriage? How important do you think it is? Is it necessary and worth fighting for?
- Do you agree that if you fail to apprehend God’s original intention that you are failing to display the most important message God wants the world to get through your marriage?
- Do you see yourself as incomplete without your spouse? Or do you see him/her as God’s provision, to both complete you and help you accomplish his will?
- How does Ephesians 5 and gospel help you become one as a couple?
Questions from “Embracing God’s Design”
- Men, what did you learn from this session about Christ-like leadership? Can you see any deficiencies in your leadership of your wife? What sin might this reveal? How can you begin to pursue God’s grace to change?
- Ladies, what did you learn from this session about respectful submission? In what ways were you convicted by the teaching? How can you begin to pursue God’s grace to change?
- Men, ask your wife:
- How can I demonstrate sacrificial love to you?
- Are there aspects of my leadership that make it difficult for you to respond?
- How would you evaluate my decision-making skills? Please give examples.
- How can I pray for you and serve you in your pursuit of God?
- Ladies ask your husband:
- Are there aspects of my submission that make it difficult for you to make decisions and lead me? Please give examples.
- How would you evaluate my response to your decisions?
- How can I pray for you and support you in your pursuit of God?
Questions from “Growing Through Conflict”
- Ask your wife to give you her evaluation of your leadership in the area of resolving conflict.
- Do I humbly lead by example when we experience conflict?
- Do I lead in biblical fellowship with you and involving other couples in our life?
- How can I grow in leading us to resolve conflicts?
- In seeking to resolve conflicts, in what specific ways do you need to humble yourself before God? Before your spouse? (Husband & wife answer)
- How have you involved others in helping you to resolve a conflict? Would this be a strength or weakness? Why?
- How does the gospel give you hope to resolve conflicts?