Healing In Christian Marriages

HEALING IN CHRISTIAN MARRIAGES

 

Eph 5:21-33

And further, submit to one another out of reverence for Christ. 22 For wives, this means submit to your husbands as to the Lord. 23 For a husband is the head of his wife as Christ is the head of the church. He is the Savior of his body, the church. 24 As the church submits to Christ, so you wives should submit to your husbands in everything. 25 For husbands, this means love your wives, just as Christ loved the church. He gave up his life for her 26 to make her holy and clean, washed by the cleansing of God’s word. 27 He did this to present her to himself as a glorious church without a spot or wrinkle or any other blemish. Instead, she will be holy and without fault. 28 In the same way, husbands ought to love their wives as they love their own bodies. For a man who loves his wife actually shows love for himself. 29 No one hates his own body but feeds and cares for it, just as Christ cares for the church. 30 And we are members of his body. 31 As the Scriptures say, “A man leaves his father and mother and is joined to his wife, and the two are united into one.” 32 This is a great mystery, but it is an illustration of the way Christ and the church are one. 33 So again I say, each man must love his wife as he loves himself, and the wife must respect her husband.

 

1 Peter 3:1-7

In the same way, you wives must accept the authority of your husbands. Then, even if some refuse to obey the Good News, your godly lives will speak to them without any words. They will be won over by observing your pure and reverent lives. 3 Don’t be concerned about the outward beauty of fancy hairstyles, expensive jewelry, or beautiful clothes. 4 You should clothe yourselves instead with the beauty that comes from within, the unfading beauty of a gentle and quiet spirit, which is so precious to God. 5 This is how the holy women of old made themselves beautiful. They trusted God and accepted the authority of their husbands. 6 For instance, Sarah obeyed her husband, Abraham, and called him her master. You are her daughters when you do what is right without fear of what your husbands might do.

7 In the same way, you husbands must give honor to your wives. Treat your wife with understanding as you live together. She may be weaker than you are, but she is your equal partner in God’s gift of new life. Treat her as you should so your prayers will not be hindered.

 

To heal in marriage you must work at being connected emotionally to each other as well as spiritually to God and each other. Marriage is described as a picture of how God loves us. Just as God wants us to love Him with all our heart, which means all of our emotions, so must we love our spouses at the heart or emotional level.

 

HOW DO WE DO THIS? (LUVE)

  1. Listen
  2. Understand what your partner is saying.
  3. Validate and affirm what your partner is saying before you say something in return
  4. Empathize with your partner. Make sure you feel emotionally what your partner is feeling. Then let your emotions tell you what to do next. Now you are emotionally connected. Now you can solve problems TOGETHER.

 

HEALING FROM DESTRUCTIVE PATTERNS OF CONFLICT

  1. Determine that you are both going to be equally loving, giving, and forgiving toward each other. The Scriptures above and elsewhere require this. Our love for our spouse is to be just like God’s love for us!
  2. Arguing and fighting stem from unmet emotional needs in each partner. This is common not shameful.
  3. The wife may protest in hurt and anger because she feels ignored or unimportant and she wants to be valued by a loving husband who connects to her emotional needs.
  4. The husband may withdraw or avoid her emotionally when she gets upset which upsets her more! It is good to talk about what you need from your partner. Avoid angry blaming or criticizing just state what your needs are in a way your spouse can respond to. If you feel hurt say you feel hurt. Do not react in anger
  5. The partner who is the one who gets more upset must SOFTEN her approach so the other partner can stay engaged in the conversation.
  6. The partner who emotionally withdraws must ENGAGE.
  7. For a more detailed description of emotional healing in marriage (and other close relationhips) read Chapter 8 in my book, Essentials of Christian Healing available on Amazon and Barnes and Noble websites.

April, 2017 Blog

5 Things Couples Must Do To Connect Emotionally

  1. You must Listen to what your partner is saying about what their needs, feelings, or wants are. In session I tell people to turn on their mental tape recorder and just repeat back word for word what their partner just said.
  2. You must make sure you Understand what your partner just said not just in words but what the emotion behind the words were. In session I tell people to use the phrase, “OK so what you just said was…Help Me Understand.” Be very curious about what your partner said. The phase “Help Me Understand truly conveys that you are trying to attune to your partner because he/she is so important to you.
  3. You must Validate what your partner just said and felt. There is no arguing, disagreeing, discounting, etc. You get to a place where you can say, “So what you just said was you felt put down and unimportant when you cannot get my attention to discuss something important to you. That makes sense.
  4. This leads you to be able to Empathize with how he/she feels. In session I make sure the listening partner feels the same emotions that their partner is feeling right now.
  5. Finally, the listener must Follow what his or her own emotions are telling him or her what to do. In session I help the listener to first empathize and then look within to feel what their own emotion is saying. For example the listener may say, “I am sorry I said that to you that way please forgive me and I will try to be more careful about making you feel as important to me as you really are. Will you forgive me?

 

This is what I have couples practice in session because they must develop new neural networks in their right brain or what are often called the limbic networks of the brain. This is at the heart of the emotionally focused therapy (EFT) that I do with most of my couples clients. It is difficult to do yourselves without outside help, but once you practice this and some of the other things we do in emotionally focused sessions, emotional connection happens quite quickly. Then we use this same process to resolve past unresolved emotional ruptures so that the very things that forced couples apart became the same things that now draw them close together. At least the way I do this, it often has miraculous results to be truly honest.

 

I often find that even with very spiritually mature Christian couples that they are not emotionally close and do not know how to connect emotionally. Few men have any idea of how to give themselves to their spouses as Christ gave Himself to the church (Ephesians 5:25). Often times even spiritually mature women have almost entirely lost the sense of admiration or respect they had when they fell in love to begin with (1 Peter 3:1) Thus when I practice EFT with Christian couples I am helping them rewire the brain so as to be able to follow Scripture and enjoy the oneness that God has planned for them at the level of emotional connection. I love it! But you will likely not be able to do this without a EFT-trained Christian counselor like myself helping you.

 

Warm regards, Dr. Bruce


March 11, 2017 Blog

Experience Your Own Supernatural Healing Story

I now realize that for many decades I was stuck in my emotional and spiritual life. I never heard any person preach or teach about how God still heals people through healing prayer and what I call healing counseling. Today my first book has been published to tell my story and the story of many other people who have experienced God’s love and healing power. You can too!

 

My book was written for the average person who comes to see me for Christian healing counseling. It is solidly based on an integration of biblical teaching, healing teachings, brain psychology, counseling, and the Bible. The book is supported by my doctoral dissertation that provides a more technical level of detail. But not only have I experienced a total life transformation as a result of experiencing God’s love and healing power, this is now my life’s purpose, and that is what I do in my healing counseling practice.

 

I know that you can also have a transformation unlike any you imagined. Even if you are a mature Christian I can guarantee you if that if you have not experienced God’s emotional, psychological, and bodily healing power you are missing a vital component of what God has in store for you. Jesus preached and taught and He healed people (Matthew 4:23 and 9:35). The church’s teaching and preaching is highly sophisticated. But the church’s power to heal people at the exact point of their deepest needs is sorely lacking at least in the United States. But the power of the Lord is and always has been present for the healing of minds, hearts, and body parts!

 

I urge you to get and read a copy of my book, “Essentials of Christian Healing: How Healing Prayer and Healing Counseling Are Changing People’s Lives”. It is now available in e-book form at Amazon, Barnes and Noble, and Apple’s iBooks websites. It will soon be released in paperback. I want you to be able to talk about your own healing story just like so many others have who have at least begun to experience God this way. Peace, love, and joy! Dr. Bruce