Moments Together for Couples:Protecting Your Marriage from an Affair
"To stand firm in the battle for our marriages, we must be prepared. We can never assume that having a good marriage shelters us from temptation. In this age of 'anything goes,' the wise woman will purposefully build walls around her marriage ahead of time to close the door on opportunities for temptation." (Judy Starr) That goes for the wise man as well.
Judy is the author of the book titled, "The Enticement of the Forbidden." She and her husband had a great ministry to over 40 countries showing the Jesus film and never thought either of them could be attracted to anyone else because they loved each other and were happily involved in ministry work together. But they let their guard down and Judy found herself tempted. This can be a lesson for all of us because if it could happen to Judy, it could happen to us.
She said, "There are basic things any marriage needs to do to build walls of protection around them, not only to reestablish trust but for the future of that marriage." Here's what Judy has learned from experience:
1. HAVING OUR TIMES WITH THE LORD INDIVIDUALLY. I don't believe there is anything more important that protects our marriage than our individual time with the Lord, making sure that we're yielded to Him and willing to do anything He tells us to every day. That's absolutely the most important thing that we can do daily.
2. LEARNING TO PROTECT OUR RELATIONSHIP WITH OTHER MEN (or women), AND HOW WE RESPOND TO THEM, because in this society, it's such a lax situation between men and women and friendships that grow. It's easy for a friendship to grow quickly beyond the bounds that God intends for a friendship with another man." (Please note that Judy's advice is aimed at women but it's also important for men to apply these principles.)
Judy was then asked, "As you look at friendships with men from church and in ministry with you, what keeps it an appropriate versus and inappropriate friendship?" She replied, "I call it 'BUILDING AN INVISIBLE WALL,' and certainly one of the first things is not sharing personal, private information --anything that should be kept exclusively for my husband and for that relationship.
"If I find myself looking forward to sharing something with another man rather than my husband, that's definitely a red flag. I need to focus on sharing all the things that are important in my life with my husband, first and foremost, so those needs of intimacy are met in that relationship." (Again, this applies to men and their dealings with other women.)
3. BUILD PROTECTIVE WALLS IN THE WORKPLACE. The workplace is one of the first places women are being drawn to men, because there are so many women in the workforce these days and it's so easy. As women --we go to lunch with the men we work with, we're dressed our best, we're working with other men on the same important projects. It's the same kind of driving thing all day - every day. By the time you go home, you've already shared your heart with everybody else. You have nothing that you need to share with your husband anymore.
"We need to be so careful of saving those kinds of intimacies and those things that are exciting in our lives to be able to share with our husband." Please men --this applies to you also.
4. TO PROTECT YOUR MARRIAGE THROUGH DISCRETION IN CLOTHING(Women). Men become easily aroused se_ually by the stimulation of sight. Therefore, what we wear is very important. To attract men to you se_ually by the clothing you choose is to defraud them because you cannot (or should not) fulfill the desire you arouse. 1 Thessalonians 4:3-6 tells us, 'For this is the will of God …that each of you know how to possess his own vessel in sanctification and honor …and that no man transgress and defraud his brother in this matter."
5. PROTECT YOUR MARRIAGE BY SPENDING TIME TOGETHER. One of the best guards against infidelity comes from having your emotional needs meet within your marriage. That means spending time alone together each week! Unless we purposefully protect that time, all of life's 'urgent' needs will undermine our marital intimacy like termites that slowly eat away the foundation of a house. What can be more urgent than protecting your marriage?
6. PROTECT YOUR MARRIAGE THROUGH ACCOUNTABILITY. Accountability to a mature godly woman [is] invaluable …Accountability may be the key issue that makes or breaks our faithfulness to God and to our spouse." Again, this is a must for a husband, as well.)
In closing, here's some great advice given by Dr. Willard Harley: "If you ever find yourself infatuated with someone other than your spouse, don't walk away, RUN!" God tells us, "Flee from sexual immorality. All other sins a man commits are outside his body, but he who sins sexually sins against his own body. Do you not know that your body is a temple of the Holy Spirit, who is in you, whom you have received from God? You are not your own; you were bought with a price. Therefore honor God with your body." (1 Corinthians 6:18-20)
God Bless… Cindy and Steve WrightKapuulya Angetile Musomba
P. O. Box 76 925
Dar Es Salaam, TANZANIA