Love and Marriage - Part 7: The Art of Conflict

March 12, 2017 Pastor: Ryan Rice Series: Love and Marriage

Topic: Love Scripture: Song of Solomon 5:1–5:17

There are 3 stages of marriage. In the honeymoon stage, there is little responsibility. Love is new and young love. Everything is perfect. The disillusionment stage is when the honeymoon is over and you are a not quite as enamored with each other. The flaws become apparent. It is reality and everyone faces it. The commitment stage is where you see your spouse with all their failures and flaws and still love them. It’s not just a commitment to spouse, but a commitment to God.

It is in the disillusionment stage that we find Solomon and his bride. We will look at their conflict and explore ways to move toward healing and restoration of the relationship. Solomon and his bride have finished their incredible honeymoon and now life returns to normal. Solomon is back working. Being king, he is busy. He comes late at night to his bride seeking intimacy and she turns him away. Conflict is a normal part of every relationship and comes from evil desires that war within us. To understand conflict, we need to look inside ourselves.

Everyone reacts to conflict differently. Some people withdraw emotionally and verbally. They withhold affection their spouse, children and others. Blaming someone else for the problem will not resolve conflict. You are the only one who can control what you do. Invalidation is telling someone that their issues is not a big deal or to get over it. This will perpetuate the conflict and belittles the other person. Negativity is a nagging attitude that always finds fault. It is toxic and focuses on the weakness of others. Just because something crosses your mind does not make it right or true. Escalation creates mountains out of mole hills. It leads to shouting and can become physical.

Conflict can only be resolved when both people understand their part of the conflict and offer forgiveness. Seek to be a blessing to your spouse and ask God how he wants us to respond. Unresolved conflict will escalate. Seek godly help and wise counsel for the tough issues.