Family Series: Husband and Wife (II)
July 18, 2021
Pastor Gavin started the service by sharing Matthew 6:10 on ‘The Lord’s Prayer’, reminding us to diligently seek God’s will to be done by surrendering our hearts to the Lord and seeking God in faith.
After an energizing Praise and Worship led by sister Rosa, brother Jacky and brother Lung performed a stage promotion about our upcoming 29th Anniversary on 8 August 2021. It was creative and fun, clearly showing the theme ‘I listen’.
Sister Zandy and brother Martin of Kindness group testified on how God led them through since their wedding day 2 years ago, right amid the social movements. Many guests could not come in as roads were blocked, etc. causing their unhappiness and complaints. However, when they committed to prayers, God reminded them that a banquet is only for a day while marriage is for a lifetime. Since then, they learned to commit everything to God and seek God’s ways in both daily life and ministry, aiming to spread the gospel. They shared the Bible verse Romans 8:28.
Pastor Gavin and pastor Arlene were welcomed on stage while sister Elaine and brother Wai Hong started the sharing session with a recap of the previous session on Live in February and a prayer. Pastor Gavin also recapped the main points, stating the four critical impacts – criticism, contempt, defensiveness, and stonewalling. He also mentioned the 5:1 ratio. It is clear that if we put God in the center of our relationship, the Holy Spirit will guide us not to fall into the enemy’s trap.
Communication is not easy and it is a lifelong learning process. As men and women are created differently in many ways, we need to understand each other, have empathy and be sensitive to each other’s state of mind. Pastor Gavin shared some scenarios and how they committed their problems to God and resolved their issues in communication. He encouraged brothers to be honest about their feelings. Wai Hong and Elaine agreed to that. The best way for better communication between couples is to put God (the third party) in the center of the relationship. As Slido was used to encourage interaction, they discussed the questions asked. One question is “How to help and encourage wives to open up and communicate the situation or emotion she is in?” Brother Ho of Kindness group shared that maybe it was good to spy on the situation through their kids and always good to pray first. Elaine responded that sometimes women might want to be pampered or appreciated with words or action while sometimes prefer to have time alone to cool down.
Pastor Gavin shared about Proverbs 15: 1, ‘A soft answer turns away wrath, but a harsh word stirs up anger.’ One has to be very careful with his words. As for him, he seeks the right moment to speak. Pastor Arlene reminded that asking God for help will lead to communication with love, not fear or avoidance. She then shared an incident of their Singapore trip four years ago and highlighted the importance of being alert to the state of mind and emotion of your spouse as the consequences might be serious. Pastor Gavin also shared a verse from Ephesians 4:26-27, “Be angry, and do not sin”. Do not deny the anger within us and be honest to ourselves. It is not wrong to feel angry; what matters is how we handle it. Always seek God right away so that we do not let things accumulate. Always choose to forgive and not be self-centered. It is not about wanting our partner to be another version of ourselves, but acceptance in the name of love.
Thank God for a wonderful time of learning the importance of and key to communication. It is not only a blessing to couples but also all of us in handling all kinds of relationships. Let us keep our focus on Jesus and build a better relationship with God and with each other.