It is not news to most of us today that we are in the mist of the one of the worst economic crisis of our time. For some of us, this is the first time the full impact of a recession has really hit home. The 90’s down turn did not mean a thing to me because I was young and did not have any responsibilities.
For married couples, I just want to say this is not the time to turn on each other and start playing the blame game. I know that sometimes in a marriage relationship one person could be the big spender while the other might be trying to rein him or her in.
Well with the economy going belly up, job losses becoming the current trend, with fear and despair on the streets, it might be time to do one thing. You may ask me, what preacher?
It might be time for you to review your marriage vows. It might be time to get the old video or dvd out, get some pop corn and remember what you signed up for. It might be time to solidify your love for each other. You said till death do us part, in sickness and in health.
I am not trying to put a guilt trip on you, or trying to take a swipe at those who have been through a divorce. But the truth is money is one of the major sources of conflict in a marriage. It has also tragically been the end of many unions.
I have a few recommendations for you and I guess you already know most of them.
Repent: If you have bought into materialism, it is time to get before God and repent. Yes, money is important, but a man’s life is not based on the abundance of his possessions (Luke 12:15). We have to strike a balance. Many of us have been greedy during the boom and some of us hate to admit it. Facing up to the truth is the first step to change.
Stand together: Since you are married there is no point in tearing each other up. Jesus said a house divided against itself will not stand (Matt 12:25). This is not rocket science. Don’t let your flesh get the better of you. Sometimes people say the devil is attacking marriages. That may be true, but there is something we fail to address, we let our flesh run amok in our relationships and give the enemy too much to work with (Eph 4:27).
Restructure your finances: If you have been spending more than you have, it might be time to start getting rid of some of your liabilities. There might be some unnecessary expenses to throw overboard to keep your ship afloat during this crisis (Prov 27:12 MSG). While listening to a teaching series on stewardship, the preacher gave a quote he heard, that simply sums up our capitalist society. “A boom is when we spend money we don’t have; a recession is when we stop spending money we don’t have.”
Forget the Joneses: I have learnt a valuable lesson, and believe me it has taken me very long to implement this. Who cares what the Joneses think? When you create a liability for yourself to impress them, remember they are not going to stay awake with you to pay your bills. Please do not hold on to stuff you should throw away, just to impress a few. Be your own person! I don’t think Jesus would have amounted to much if he spent his time thinking about what the Pharisees and the Priests thought about him. Living your life at the mercy of the opinions of others is a crazy way to live (Prov 29:25 MSG).
Support One another: If a spouse looses their job, they need your support. This is the time to encourage one another. The words you use are very important, and can go a long way to affect your crises positively or negatively (Prov 18:21). Don’t put them down! Support each other. This is what the marriage covenant is about. It is suppose to bring security not chaos.
Knowing that you have got each others back in the crises will go a long way to bring you through it. Remain strong in the Lord!