UpBuilding Men, Women, and Children in Practical Christianity

May/June 2003 Monthly Letter

Dear Partner In Ministry,

June is the most popular “wedding” month for both Christians and non-Christians alike. But there is a great difference in being wedded and being happily married, let alone staying married!

George Barna, a social science researcher (see website www.barna.org) notes that “born again Christians are just as likely to get divorced as are non-born again adults.” Overall, 33% as compared with 34%.

Born again is defined as those who accepted Jesus as Savior and Lord, having confessed their sins, and believing they will go to Heaven after they die. More than 90% divorced after they accepted Christ, not before.

He notes . . . “it is especially unsettling to find that the faith commitment of so many born again individuals has not enabled them to strengthen and save their marriages.” The painful reality of life is that divorce happens! The Biblical truth is that “we all sin and fall short of the glory of God.”

My prayer at each Couples' session is: “Jesus, You changed water into wine at the wedding in Cana, so change the couples here in simple and specific ways.” And some He does!

Each session includes humorous teaching on six different forms of love then allowing each couple to graph personal preferences, dialogue the results, form 30 day prayer covenants with another couple and with one’s mate, share personal needs and affirmations, and renew personal love intentions in an unhurried time in the candlelit sanctuary.

Here are some written comments from couples who have experienced the presence of Jesus and His ability to enable them to change and ability to repair any brokenness that exists:

“The Lord spoke to our hearts. Sharing our needs through the graph was overwhelming! Our marriage had deteriorated with NO physical contact and little true communication. Neither of us was happy but neither was motivated to close the gap. Tonight we see a glimmer of hope!”

“Tonight was the first time in our 52 years of marriage that we prayed together as a couple outloud! (We'’re both elders in the church!) And your GOODNESS prayer will keep us doing it!”

“Thank you for the opportunity to tell each other what we need in a non-threatening way. Before we've either been too scared to do this OR thought the other should already know!”

“My husband and I are trainers for a nationally syndicated marriage seminar. We know exactly what each other's needs are. The setting tonight allowed us to sadly confess that we have knowingly chosen NOT to meet one another'’s needs. I thank God for your causing us to make a prayer covenant with another couple. This simple way of accountability will enable us to intentionally turn our knowledge into action — and quite possibly — save our marriage!”

Thank you for your personal commitment to this Ministry that “builds up” marriages, even those which have some serious cracks in their Christian foundations! Jesus, the Master Carpenter, is still working wonders!


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