I have been a pastor for more than 40 years and I have counseled a lot of couples. Let me say this: most marriages that I have seen dissolve did not have to. The couples were simply unwilling to do what the Bible says.
When asked about why they think their marriage is failing, they cite "irreconcilable differences." If I hear that one more time, I am going to pull what little hair I have left out of my head!
Irreconcilable differences? My wife and I have had irreconcilable differences for over four decades. For example, she is neat and I am messy. She is sometimes late; I am often early. She likes to watch anything on television as long as the people have a British accent. I like shoot ’em ups and mysteries and action. She is cute and I am fat. Our differences are irreconcilable, and always will be.
How is it that the very thing that drew people together is now supposedly what’s driving them apart? The thing that probably attracted you to your husband or wife was that they are different from you. Maybe you saw something in them that you did not have in your life and you liked that. Now that very thing has turned into a wide chasm—a problem that you say cannot be resolved.
I disagree. I say you recognize there are always going to be irreconcilable differences in your marriage. Embrace it. Realize that coping with differences is part of the relationship. And then get to work improving your marriage. The best husbands will always be aware of the fact that they can do a much better job. And the same goes for wives.
Just because your differences can’t be reconciled, it doesn’t mean that you and your spouse can’t be. According to 2 Corinthians, God has given us the "ministry of reconciliation." Let’s put it into practice, not only in our interactions with the world, but in our marriages as well.
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