Monday, 12 July 2010

Marital Satisfaction - Do I Have It?

On my way to discover possible quantifiable, semi-objective measures of what constitutes a successful marriage I ran across the CHARISMA research, an attempt to define marital satisfaction. Their findings concluded that marital satisfaction is a subjective condition which is dependent upon the degree to which the individual perceives their needs, expectations, and desires are being met in their marriage. The article goes on to say that marital satisfaction is not a quality of the relationship.

“Exactamundo!”(meaning right on bro) I believe this research captures the definition quite accurately and accounts for why so many married couples are unhappy. I believe that all too many people are asking the question “Am I satisfied in my marriage?” which I believe is the wrong question. If you start with the wrong question it almost doesn’t matter what the answer is. I feel this posting getting a little deep but now that I am in up to my waist I will proceed.

Okay wise guy, why is that the wrong question? Surely God would want me to be satisfied in my marriage. He would want me to be happy and fulfilled. This is where Scripture gets a little dicey. Would God prefer that we are satisfied, happy and fulfilled – perhaps, BUT

Our purpose in marriage as well as in life is to glorify God. God is first and foremost concerned about our holiness and not our happiness. This means that you may be in a very difficult marriage, one that God will use to ultimately benefit you. He will use your spouse, if you let him, to draw you closer to Him, to enable you to grow into the person that He wants you to be. I know, I was in that kind of a marriage. During the better part of our thirty-eight year marriage, before my wife died of cancer,she suffered from bi-polar illness with a touch of schizophrenia sprinkled in. I can say that today I am a much better person for having been married to my first wife. The Lord used her to grow me and develop me in numerous ways.

Therefore it would seem to me that the right question to ask is “Does our marriage glorify God?” If the answer is yes, most likely you are in a very satisfying relationship.

What do you think?

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