"The cross makes a stunning statement about husbands and wives: we are sinners and our only hope is grace. Without a clear awareness of sin, we will evaluate our conflicts outside of the biblical story--the finished work of Jesus Christ on the cross--thus eliminating any basis for true understanding, true reconciliation, or true change."
“I have come to believe that you and I can manage to acquire almost anything we are determined to have. If we want to be married badly enough, we can find someone who will marry us. If an unhappy spouse wants to get out of marriage badly enough, he or she can get out. But we need to be reminded of how dangerous it is to insist that God give us our own will.”
“God only allows two people at a time in the boxing ring. If you want to get into the ring and try to fight your own battles, God will let you. But He’ll get out. If you want God to fight your battles for you, then you must get out of the ring … And stay out.”
"Our real opponent is not on the opposite side of the bed, but within our hearts. Our enemy is the desires of our flesh that oppose the desire of the Spirit. This is the fiercest and only true enemy of our marriage."
“Dating is largely a dance in which you always try to put the best face forward—hardly a good preparation for the inevitable self-disclosure implied in marriage. In fact, I wouldn’t be surprised if many marriages end in divorce largely because one or both partners are running from their own revealed weaknesses as much as they are running from something they can’t tolerate in their spouse.”
“Obeying God’s commands is the best thing you can do for your own sake, for the sake of your family, and for the glory of God. This means that even when a marriage looks hopeless and painful, the best thing that we can do if we want to experience God’s goodness in our lives is to do what He clearly states is His will.”
“When our marriage fell apart, it happened through my taking one little step at a time. I made tiny choices that all added up to two huge choices. I had to choose between my husband and my boyfriend, and I had to choose between God’s will and my own. Be warned that each emotional step you take will either be toward your spouse or away from him or her. Choose wisely.”
“Marriage is the union of two imperfect people who, in their selfishness, sinfulness, and demands of each other, will cause disappointment and hurt. You must lay aside those difficulties and hold fast to forgiveness, love, and Christ’s command to love even those who don’t at times appear to love you.”
“It’s a lot easier to trash the marriage and for both parties to flee the difficulty of reconstructing the relationship. Yet to divorce now means that you only take all this unfinished business with you. It will require you to work on this by yourself. Should you refuse and try to bury it, it will contaminate all future relationships you might develop … But for those who have done the difficult work, it’s all been worth it.”
“When I hear of couples who break up after just three or four years, I feel sad because they haven’t even begun to experience what being married is really like ... Becoming one—in the deepest, most intimate sense—takes time. It’s a journey that never really ends, but it takes at least the span of a decade for the sense of intimacy to really display itself in the marriage relationship.”
“One of the cruelest and most self-condemning remarks I’ve ever heard is the one that men often use when they leave their wives for another woman: ‘The truth is, I’ve never loved you.’ This is meant to be an attack on the wife—saying in effect, ‘The truth is, I’ve never found you lovable.’ But put in a Christian context, it’s a confession of the man’s utter failure to be a Christian. If he hasn’t loved his wife, it is not his wife’s fault, but his. Jesus calls us to love even the unlovable—even our enemies!—so a man who says ‘I’ve never loved you’ is a man who is saying essentially this: ‘I’ve never acted like a Christian’.”
“People make their biggest mistake when they feel they can deal with the moral and emotional parts simply by walking out and saying they are not in love anymore… Sooner or later their miscalculation catches up with them.”
“To God, forever does not mean ‘for as long as the marriage works.’ Forever means for the rest of your lives. God sees our vows as life-binding and permanent (Numbers 30:1-2; Malachi 2:13-16; Matthew 5:33.37).”
Seek wise counsel from your pastor or a local Christian counselor
Consider couple counseling if your spouse is willing
Take time out to count the full cost of divorce—legal, financial, emotional, kids. Think through those issues by listening to and discussing the “Before Your Divorce” broadcast with your spouse or a trusted mentor.