I love listening to podcasts and one of my favorites is Focus on the Family. I put it on when I’m folding laundry, washing the dishes or driving alone in the car. A few days ago, I listened to the episodes from April 11th and 12th, an interview with Christian recording artist Laura Story and her husband, Martin. I really encourage you to listen to it, you can find the episodes online here.
I had heard a little bit about their story before and knew her husband had some health challenges. On the podcast, I learned that early in their marriage doctors discovered that Martin had a brain tumor. He had numerous surgeries that led to lots of hospital stays and some scary moments of not knowing if he would survive. Thankfully he did, but he now suffers from short-term memory loss that affects him daily.
They talked so candidly about their journey and its ups and downs. They have three children and talked about how they manage their schedules, raising kids and the challenges of Martin’s short-term memory loss.
They talked about their marital struggles and the biggest issues in their marriage. One of the most profound things Laura said is how they’ve realized their biggest issue isn’t the disability, but rather their individual sin, which is often manifested in dealing with the disability.
That’s true for all of us. The biggest issue facing our marriage isn’t money, sex or raising children—it’s our sin! Sin is the root issue and it manifests itself behind so many other things. Sin is why we have disagreements, barriers that block intimacy and so much divorce in our culture. Sin makes us selfish and selfishness causes a whole lot of problems in any relationship, but especially marriage.
Laura’s statement made me think of James 4:1-3 NLT:
“What is causing the quarrels and fights among you? Don’t they come from the evil desires at war within you? You want what you don’t have, so you scheme and kill to get it. You are jealous of what others have, but you can’t get it, so you fight and wage war to take it away from them. Yet you don’t have what you want because you don’t ask God for it. And even when you ask, you don’t get it because your motives are all wrong—you want only what will give you pleasure.”
We are all born with a sin nature and as much as we wish it wasn’t there, it is. But we can’t make that an excuse or let it be a permission slip to being selfish or mistreating others. Being aware that sin is the biggest issue facing marriage makes me want to give myself a heart check. You too?
This week, let’s ask ourselves these questions:
- Do I have a sin issue I need to deal with?
- How does my sin affect my spouse?
- When will I confess my sin to my spouse?
- What can I do to be less selfish and more selfless toward my spouse?
I love James 5:16 NLT and think it will help us deal with this sin issue: “Confess your sins to each other and pray for each other so that you may be healed. The earnest prayer of a righteous person has great power and produces wonderful results.”
I pray you experience wonderful results as you work through your sin and makes steps to improve your marriage! I’ll be working right along with you.