Who shall separate us from the love of Christ? Shall trouble or hardship or persecution or famine or nakedness or danger or sword? No, in all these things we are more than conquerors through him who loved us. Romans 8:35,37

Every good marriage eventually bumps into something bad.

It may be infertility, financial debt, emotional turmoil, or even something as earth shaking as infidelity.

Problems are inevitable. No couple is immune.

And once a couple runs into some serious bad things they are not likely to recover quickly. Not generally, anyway. Slow progress is the typical course; steadily building one marriage accomplishment upon another, like a game that is won one play at a time, or a building that is built brick by brick.

Smart couples don’t expect the world to fall into their laps. It never has. But somewhere deep in the soul of every marriage, a husband and wife will find what Orison Marden calls their “slumbering powers.”

These astonishing powers, when awoken, will rise up, look bad fortune in the face, and begin to revolutionize their relationship.

It may be a gradual revolution, but it is a trust-building, heart-healing, love-renewing revolution, just the same.

A difficult time can be more readily endured if we retain the conviction that our existence holds a purpose – a cause to pursue, a person to love, a goal to achieve. –John Maxwell

We’ve been on a quest for some time to discover what good couples do right in the midst of battling their calamities. And among other things, we found that these couples do at least two things:

  • Good Couples Take Responsibility for the Good as well as the Bad. They don’t believe their problem rests with the other person. They don’t waste their time pointing out each other’s flaws and foibles. They admit their own mistakes so their partner doesn’t have to.
  • Good Couples Believe that Good Wins Over Bad. They plant a seeding of hope in their relationship and allow its tiny roots, in time, to sprout optimism. And that optimism about their future together gives them a picture they can hang on to even in tough times.

This very short list is a tall order for mere married mortals, but, with God’s help, it is within reach.

Reflect and Respond

How have the two of you found your “slumbering powers” to help your good marriage get through through something bad?

Go ahead, tell us in the comments.

Related Resource

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Learn how marriages can thrive when couples use everyday difficulties to strengthen their relationships! This book will show you the most common sources of marital discord; the fine line between obstacles and opportunities; the importance of accepting the two sides of sex and intimacy; and the five not-so-easy steps for solving problems.