When Your Blended Family Doesn’t Blend

When Your Blended Family Doesn't Blend

I sat across the room from her in my office each week. She was fifteen. Her parents had divorced when she was 4. They had been fighting over her ever since. Hundreds of thousands of dollars worth of court costs, counseling sessions, attorney fees, and custody evaluations. She had almost no memory of her parents living in harmony. She was numb, hated marriage, and hated divorce … [Read more...]

Trying to Make a Household Run More Smoothly

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For many couples, household chores can be one of the top sources of marital conflict. Finding a way to communicate your needs and work together with gracious understanding may take time and some trial-and-error, but is well worth the effort. Jena Shockley started out with a system for managing chores, but it didn't necessarily work as well as she'd hoped, but eventually … [Read more...]

How to Treat My Spouse :: 4 Scriptures Worth Memorizing

How to Treat My Spouse :: 4 Scriptures Worth Memorizing

I’m a Louisiana gal, born and raised. If you mention fried shrimp po’boys, I will probably swoon. So when my husband had the privilege of officiating the wedding of one of our students in New Orleans this past weekend, it was just lagniappe ("happy extra") to an already full life. I ate enough calories to last me until Thanksgiving, was completely enchanted by the über New … [Read more...]

You’re Allowed to Be in a Bad Mood

You’re Allowed to Be in a Bad Mood

It would all start with one of us being in a bad mood. Early in our marriage, we would over-analyze each other’s moods. "What’s his problem?" "Why won’t she smile at me?" "He needs to snap out of it." "She sure is being difficult." We would badger each other by asking repeatedly, "What’s wrong? Is it something I did?" until finally the bad-mood spouse would snap, which … [Read more...]

Establishing Healthy Boundaries with Your In-Laws

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My husband and I grew up 30 minutes away from one another. Every weekend my family would make the drive from our small town to the city we now call home, and we passed his family’s house countless times. (Of course, I never knew he lived there until our paths crossed four years ago.) Thinking about the man I wanted to marry someday, I always imagined and hoped that he … [Read more...]

MarriageRoots Conversation Card Family Edition :: 20 Questions to Discuss with Your Spouse and Kids [FREE Download]

MarriageRoots Convo Card :: Family Edition

Of course we talk to our kids and spouse. We talk all. the. time, actually. In fact, there are times we'd prefer to talk to them a little less, if we're being honest. Lots of conversations about schedules, practice, grades, work, obligations, and what's for dinner. It's easy sometimes to forget that it's been a while since we've had a real conversation about their lives or, … [Read more...]

When Introverts and Extroverts Marry

When Introverts and Extroverts Marry

I married the big man on campus. When we were in college he was always the center of attention. It seemed like everyone knew who he was no matter where he went, and he could make just about anyone laugh with his stories. Looking back, I guess this was part of what attracted me to him. His dynamic personality was the antithesis of mine, and I was drawn to it. I, on the … [Read more...]

It Takes Courage to Get Out of a Marriage Rut

It Takes Courage to Get Out of a Marriage Rut

Remember how the Israelites, God’s chosen people, wandered in the wilderness for 40 years before entering the Promised Land? They left Egypt, enabled, led and protected by the unmistakable hand of their miracle-working God, and embarked on a journey that should have lasted 11 days. Eleven days. Instead of crossing over into the land of promise after a … [Read more...]

I Thought I Was Good at Communicating…and Then I Got Married

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“It’s all about communication.” Any time I have asked for marriage advice, those are usually the first words I hear. People say that as long as I communicate with my husband, then things will go more smoothly and we can enjoy a deeper relationship. To be honest, when I first heard these words, I was somewhat confused. I mean, how can a person not communicate in a … [Read more...]

Managing the Tension Between Work and Home

Managing the Tension Between Work and Home

“You are a husband and father first, before you are a pastor.” With this declaration, based on 1 Timothy 3:4-5, my wise friend and mentor began my ordination charge. He then shared how his failure to build this priority into his own ministry had cost his family dearly. Years of unintended neglect had sown seeds of bitterness and dysfunction in his home. More than a … [Read more...]