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Open Communication

a. It takes hard work and dedication to have a great marriage
b. A great marriage will be a reality when both husband and wife know how to communicate effectively.
c. Great communication does not just happen.
d. It must be a goal that both parties go after.
e. Speaking is a combination of Words, Body Language, Tone of Voice, History and Insecurities.
f. Read Gen 2:24 Marriage is God's idea. God saw the need that man needs a helper and brought us together.
g. Today we will learn HOW and WHY you should communicate in your marriage.

Q1. What things in a marriage need to be communicated?
(i)     Schedule.
(ii)    Feelings.
(iii)   Attitudes.
(iv)   Expectations.
(v)    Discipline of kids. (future)
(vi)   Dreams.
(vii)  Desires.
(viii) Plans.
(ix)   Fears.
(x)    Concerns.

Q2. Why is communication so important?
(i)   Unity.
(ii)  Conflict resolution.
(iii) So you can meet needs.

Q3. What are some things in human nature that can be a barrier to good communication and hurt the marriage?
(i)    Insensitivity.
(ii)   Selfishness.
(iii)  Self-centeredness.
(iv)  Arrogance.
(v)   Fear of rejection.
(vi)  Resentments attitudes.
(vii) Etc....

Q4. Why is it important in a marriage for you to be expressive?
(i)   Communication brings intimacy and unity.
(ii)  Unexpressed feelings turn to attitudes.
(iii) It reveals your heart … where the heart is, actions follow.
(iv)  It is the key to helping each other be right with God.

Let's look at 4 aspects of good communication:

1. Being outwardly expressive.

Luke 6:43-45
43 "No good tree bears bad fruit, nor does a bad tree bear good fruit.
44 Each tree is recognized by its own fruit. People do not pick figs from thornbushes, or grapes from briers.
45 The good man brings good things out of the good stored up in his heart, and the evil man brings evil things out of the evil stored up in his heart. For out of the overflow of his heart his mouth speaks.

Communication between Men and Women differ. How?

(i) When a man is stressed and wants to solve a problem, he keeps quiet and goes into "cave"----he just wants to be by himself. When he sorts out the problem, he comes out of the "cave".

Woman on the other hand are very different. When she is stressed and wants to solve a problem she wants to talk and communicate how she FEELS.

TALKING and COMMUNICATING how they FEEL with their spouse helps them deal with their problems.

(ii) Men love to share Facts---Their facts are shorter and to the point.

Women love to express Feelings. Her feelings are more/longer, more expressive

Wife : "Honey we need to talk". (She is expressing a need.)
Husband : "About what"? (He wants the facts.)
Wife : "How was your day today?"
Husband : "Just fine"

The man is not in touch with his feeling or as interested in them as she is. He thinks his answer finished their talk.

(iii) Men connect by Doing Things.  Women connect by Talking.

Lets see how women connect through words and men through actions can affect a simple talk.

Wife : "I hate my job"
Husband : "Why don't you quit?"
Wife : "No. Its just there is too much work"
Husband : "Tell your boss to hire some people to help you"
Wife : "Why can't you just listen to me?"
Husband : "I am listening to you. If you didn't want my help, why did you bring up the subject?

By expressing her feeling about her job, the wife is saying "I want to connect with you"

From the man's perspective response is consistent with his view of intimacy. He wants to do something with her. He wants to fix things with her. For him he offers a logical solution to her problem.

Men - Your wife just needs you to listen. Show empathy. Don't try to solve anything. She just wants you to know how she is FEELING.

2. Having pride killing humility

Philippians 2:1-3
1 If you have any encouragement from being united with Christ, if any comfort from his love, if any fellowship with the Spirit, if any tenderness and compassion,
2 then make my joy complete by being like-minded, having the same love, being one in spirit and purpose.
3 Do nothing out of selfish ambition or vain conceit, but in humility consider others better than yourselves.

Q5. What kills communication?

Consider others better than yourself.

Q6. How does pride kill good communication?
(i) Pride wants to get its point across, not listen to the other person.
(ii) Pride is not willing to be vulnerable or close.

Q7. How can we have the humility we need for good communication?
(i) See yourself as you are without God.
(ii) Confess sin regularly.
(iii) Pray for humility, be unified with your mate.

3. Being expressively respectful.

Ephesians 5:33
However, each one of you also must love his wife as he loves himself, and the wife must respect her husband.

Wife must respect her husband while communicating to her husband.

1 Peter 3:7
Husbands, in the same way be considerate as you live with your wives, and treat them with respect as the weaker partner and as heirs with you of the gracious gift of life, so that nothing will hinder your prayers.
Husband must respect his wife while communicating to his wife.

Q8. Why is respect so critical to good communication? How do you feel when your are disrespected?
Note….. In the scripture above - God does not say your mate must EARN respect, it is COMMANDED. You got to give respect.

4. Nothing is more important than your relationship with God.

Luke 14:25-26
25 Large crowds were traveling with Jesus, and turning to them he said:
26 "If anyone comes to me and does not hate his father and mother, his wife and children, his brothers and sisters--yes, even his own life--he cannot be my disciple.

Must hate father, brother, husband wife.

Q9. What is this scripture talking about?
Jesus comes first

Q10. How does making Jesus first help us in our communication?
(i) It teaches us to love others.
(ii) It help us to put others needs first.
(iii) A great disciple can learn, grow, and change.

Q11. What happen when something else is more important than God?
(i) Won't have the right standard.
(ii) We will compromise our marriage, our children and ourselves.
(iii) We will do what we want, when we want, how we want.
(iv) These things are the bi-products of being a disciple of Jesus.
(v) The key to great communication is to change your self.
(vi) The way to do that is to continually make decisions to be like Jesus.

O - Outwardly expressive
P - Pride-killing humility
E - Expressively respectful
N - Nothing before God/Jesus.

Tips to better your communication

(i)Talk Daily

Both of you need to talk to each other daily. Do not give all day long to outsiders and people on the job and come home neglecting your family /spouse. Ask each other "How was your day?" Really, listen to each other.

(ii)Watch your Tone or Voice

Proverbs 15:1
A gentle answer turns away wrath, but a harsh word stirs up anger.

Talk to each other gently. Stop being harsh and rude like the average Indian. Remember you are disciple of Jesus. Treat each other with RESPECT. (No raising hand or yelling at each other)

(iii)Be Sensitive

Ephesians 4:29
Do not let any unwholesome talk come out of your mouths, but only what is helpful for building others up according to their needs, that it may benefit those who listen.

Watch HOW you say things. THINK before you speak. How will I say this… What words will I use to express this… so that I can communicate respectfully. Build each other. Stop tearing each other down with speech.

Men-your wife has a need to TALK. You must listen if she must be RADIANT. Never insult each other in front of the children (Future)

Example : "You are just like your dad/mom". Such talk is destructive and rude. Never argue in front of your children. Your kids (future) will get insecure and blame themselves.


Put this into practice.