Strong Networks, Strong Family.

Marriage is a marathon, not a sprint

The Battle of Marathon took place in 490 BC. During the first Persian invasion. It was fought between the citizens of Athens, Greece, and the Persian forces under the rule of the Persian king Darius. A legendary race of the Greek soldier Pheidippides, a messenger from the Battle of Marathon to Athens, is the foundation of the modern marathon, which takes place in cities around the world, and the largest have tens of thousands of runners participating.

The marathon is a long-distance road race with an official distance of 26 7/32 miles, which requires great strength and endurance. A sprint, on the other hand, is a short-distance run, requiring a burst of energy to run at full speed. Marriage is a marathon, not a sprint.

On the Marathon Rookie website, I found the Top 10 Novice Mistakes for Beginning Marathon Runners, which also apply to marriage. They are: injury, hydration, lack of awareness, start too fast, wrong goal, motivation, lack of faith, lack of support, and underestimating stretching. Let’s look at each of these to see why marriages are often troubled and fail.

1. Injury. A couple enters marriage, bringing with them an emotional and spiritual baggage and, often, many wounds. says many beginning runners “notice pain in their shins or knees and ignore it. They keep running and BAM, it hits them. They’re done. Game over. Watch for warning signs and how to deal with them.”

If one person in the marriage is injured, the health of the marriage will also suffer. We need to realize that it is only God who can heal and heal us, not our spouse. Men love to fix things, but they cannot fix their wives. Vice versa for wives trying to change, fix or improve their husbands.

Jesus is the healer of wounded hearts. Sometimes healing deep wounds such as parental rejection, neglect, child abuse, dysfunctional relationships in adulthood, abortion, drugs, alcohol or pornography, and gambling addictions may require professional counseling. , spiritual liberation and pastoral responsibility.

Ultimately, if we seek God’s face, study his word, and obey him, we will receive our healing. Psalm 107: 20 says, “He sent his word and healed them, and delivered them from their destruction.”

2. Hydration. says that runners become dehydrated because they underestimate the amount of water their bodies need during training. Married couples do not realize how much they need the “living waters” of Jesus each day for their marriage to last. In John 4:10 (NKJV), Jesus said to the Samaritan woman at the well: “Jesus answered her and said to her:” If you only knew the gift of God, and who is it that says to you: ‘Give me to drink.’ , ‘you would have asked Him, and He would have given you living water. “

3. Lack of knowledge. When you’re dating, let’s face it, your fiancé doesn’t realize what he’s really getting into! He doesn’t know that you’re a cleaning freak, that you hate cooking, and that you’re not a morning person. After all, you go out on the weekends to the Japanese or Italian restaurant, where they cook the delicious food, wash the dishes, and after your talks and snuggle until midnight at their house, you go home and fall asleep, and sleep. in the next. Tomorrow!

Couples may see some things that worry them while dating, but often they don’t really see with their “love blinders” on. They are too focused on how wonderful this person is and how they will be happy for the rest of their lives. A longer dating period, asking probing questions, and paying attention to small details will help you get to know your fiancé better, and you’ll have less unpleasant “surprises” such as him being a “messy” or she having a new boyfriend. shoe addiction – after saying “Yes, I do.”

4. Start too fast. says that beginning runners try to run more miles than scheduled training. “If you feel really strong when you start training and want to run more, PLEASE resist the urge. By going the extra mile, you are substantially increasing the likelihood of injury.”

Going too fast in a relationship can also increase your chances of getting hurt. This is especially true in a relationship where there is a lot of intense chemistry. Lust won’t see you through the years; commitment and love will be! Take it easy and meet this person before your wedding day!

5. Incorrect training program. In Luke 6: 47-49 (NKJV), the story of the man who built his house on the foundations of rock, and who stood in the fierce storm, is a perfect picture of a good marriage that will last. Married couples will face many storms over the years, and the fact that their marriage is based on the principles of God’s word is what will help them overcome these storms.

Some couples had the wrong “training program,” in the sense that they were never taught the truth of God’s word and they do not have a relationship with Jesus Christ. says that some runners choose a program that is more difficult than they can handle and end up quitting. Jesus said, “I am the vine; you are the branches. Apart from me, you can do nothing.” We need God’s help with our marriage problems. All we have to do is come to Him with humble faith, and He will give us whatever we need.

6. Wrong goal. Some runners focus on finishing the marathon quickly. This is the wrong goal and it increases the chances of getting injured and not finishing at all. The goal of the marathon for a beginner should be just to finish. This should also be our goal in marriage, to do everything possible to avoid divorce. It takes long-term love, mutual honor, commitment, affection, and open and honest communication for a marriage to work long-term. A great sense of humor helps too!

Some people marry with the goal of the other person making them happy and completing them. Only God can fill and complete us. We need to put aside the irrational expectations of our husband or wife, and not put that kind of pressure on them.

We can also have other goals that are quite selfish in nature, such as our own personal career or business success, to the detriment of marriage and family: ambitiously devoting all of our time to personal projects to “get ahead”, while neglecting the same. the ones we love. Balance is the key. Time with our husband or wife lets them know that we love and enjoy them.

7. Motivation. Just like in a race when bad weather, injury, illness, or work can prevent you from running and cause you to lose motivation to continue, there are problems that occur in a marriage that prevent a husband or wife from running. they lose motivation to continue the marriage. Financial stress, demands from children, intrusive relatives and friends, pressures at work, a nagging spouse, infidelity or pornography, addictions, fatigue, boredom can all influence the desire for one. of couples getting out of marriage. Don’t lose sight of the goal; finish strong. Never give up!

8. Lack of faith. In Mark 6: 5-6, unbelief hindered God’s purposes. People today often give up too easily and quickly and file for divorce. “Now he couldn’t do any mighty work there, except that he laid his hands on a few sick people and healed them. 6 And he marveled at their unbelief. Then he went around the villages in a circuit, teaching.”

MarathonRookie.Com says that beginning runners start training and have a difficult time finishing their first five-mile run. After that, they give up, thinking that they could never do a marathon. “But Jesus looked at them and said,” With men this is impossible, but with God all things are possible “(Matthew 19:26, NKJV) We need to have faith and believe that God will heal our marriages.

9. Lack of support. The world is too eager to tell you that marriage is too difficult and that it is far better (for your sake, your children, your career, your sanity, or your checking account) to get divorced. Many married couples do not receive the support they need to help their marriages succeed from family, friends, co-workers, and even professional counselors and spiritual advisers.

If you are counseling with a professional counselor who tells you to divorce your spouse for any reason other than spousal or child infidelity, abuse, or neglect, RUN! Sometimes a couple may need to set boundaries with people who are criticizing their marriage or giving unholy advice to one or both of them. You might even have to cut off contact with them for a season or permanently. Your marriage is your highest priority, under God.

As the marriage progresses, the family leaves. As the family goes, the community goes. As the community advances, the state advances. As the state advances, the nation advances. As the nation advances, the world goes! Successful marriages have far-reaching consequences!

God told Abraham that he and his descendants would be blessed forever, for all future generations! Because of Abraham and Sarah’s faith and obedience in God, and because of their committed marriage, their children and all future generations were blessed!

Don’t you think their marriage was strained a bit when Abraham slept with Sarah’s maiden and she became pregnant with Ishmael, after Sarah had years of barrenness? However, Sarah stayed, despite her great pain and emptiness … and God rewarded her with her own baby, Isaac, which means “laughter.”

10. Stretch. Beginning runners often underestimate the importance of stretching, which causes less pain, puts them at lower risk of injury, and gives them greater flexibility and a longer stride. Stretch your arms toward Jesus and toward your husband or wife. Do your best in your love and devotion. Bend, cooperate, be understanding, show mercy and forgiveness. This will help your marriage last.

Don’t be so rigid and firm in your ways, insisting that you are right all the time, that you cannot meet your spouse halfway or more. Give your life for the good of your marriage. Throughout the years of your marriage, you will learn that “striving” in faith and love will enhance your marriage relationship and create more tenderness, affection, respect, and passion in your marriage.

A sprint can get you to the finish line faster, but a marathon has incredible prizes. Go for the gold in marriage. Do the marathon and win!

“Every morning in Africa, a gazelle wakes up. It knows it must run faster than the fastest lion or it will be killed. Every morning in Africa, a lion wakes up. It knows it must run faster than the slowest gazelle, or he’ll starve. It doesn’t matter if you’re a lion or a gazelle, when the sun comes up, you’d better be running. ” – Unknown

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