Marriage the Prophetic Covenant

Saturday, November 25, 2006


The One Who Cares Most Decides: a good principle to live by in your marriage

One power struggle for many couples is decisions. The conflict comes because we exercise power over our mate, when we make them come to a decision other than the one they would have made without our insistence. It’s win-lose.

I’ll never forget when we built our house and later remodeled our basement. Peggy has always been the one with taste in decorating. But because I was the big strong man and because I liked being in control I insisted in having a say in the selection of wallpaper for one room in the new area we finished.

She liked one pattern. I liked others. So we compromised. We compromised on the ugliest purple and orange paisley wallpaper you ever saw. In the book it was acceptable. But once on the wall it soon became shorthand symbol for a rule that has served us well for the last 20 years of our marriage. The person who cares most decides. No compromise. If you really care, you decide. I’ll learn to love it.

So, she has had most of the decisions in decorating, I do most of the landscaping, she buys many of my clothes, I buy the cars. She decides on much of our entertainment and entertaining, I decide on vacations.

That’s not to say we don’t confer, or ask, or seek counsel but in the end the rule works well. The one who cares most decides. What’s really interesting about this rule is because it’s in place we try hard to ask the other’s opinions. The power struggles are off.

You might say, “but I care about those things”. He or She has lousy judgment to choose. They chose you, didn’t they? Guess what, they will learn their limits. Take off the leash. Let them make a choice. You will be happier.

Control and power plays can be the death of marriage. These decisions most of the time are not life or death. They are incidental and reversible. If you are the controller your life will be made much easier if you let go. Honest. Try it, you’ll like it.

One last issue about submission and I hate to bring this up, except I have run into it. This is where a husband uses the submission trump card to try to cause his wife to engage in something that she doesn’t want to because it’s wrong in the eyes of God. It is never ever God’s will for a wife to have to submit to ungodly acts out of obedience to her husband. If it doesn’t line up with the laws of God you need to first refuse and then seek Godly counsel to bring your husband to account. Let him know right out of the box these are your limits.


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