The word ‘change’ has today become a household word among Nigerians; thanks to the Buhari/APC change mantra with which they won the hearts of many Nigerians during the 2015 election. Obviously, change is very appealing to Man; it has a strong psychological impact on the human mind and it is a natural part of life. According to J.F Kennedy, “change is the law of life.” Change is therefore inevitable. However, the change we are looking at in this discourse is the positive change.
The Bible says in Mathew 7:3-5, “why do you look at the speck that is in another’s (your partners) eyes, but do not notice the log that is in your own eye? … first take the log out of your own eye.” Why do we seem to see only the speck in the other person’s eye instead of the log in our own? Frankly, the other person’s faults are easy to see while ours seem so minor by comparison. One having a good marriage or blissful home is not by getting married to a perfect person, but by learning to see an imperfect person as being perfect. The Bible says, “Love covereth multitude of sins: (faults).” After all, if we were all perfect, there would be no need for love in this world. There are many cases of spouses trying to change their mates into the husband or wife they think they should be. However, in the end, they discover and even admit that their efforts have been a total failure.
Even when spouses get to understand the message about the speck and the log in people’s eyes, instead of applying the truth to themselves personally, they apply the truth to their spouses; that is in terms of what their partners should do about it. Most people are busy thinking of changing their spouses, but never think of changing themselves. Change will not come in our homes and relationships if we wait for the other person or some other time. We are actually the change we are looking for in our homes. We do not have to be afraid of change.
This change is a process and must be positive, so be patient with yourself and your spouse. There are many circumstances you find yourselves that you cannot change, but you can change yourself. You have to change your responses to events and the way things are in your home. Change your thinking, change the negative images in your mind to positive ones, and change your attitude; and see your much desired change comes into reality. Do all you can to regain control of your thought before Satan gains complete ownership of your home.
Blaming your partner is a waste of time, as no matter how much fault you find with your spouse and regardless of how much you blame each other, it will not change your spouse. And if you are doing something and you know that it is not getting you the result you desire in your home and relationship, you better make the needed change.
The most effective way of finding out what is or is not working is to pay attention to the outcome you are currently achieving. Do more of what is working and avoid that which is not working, for example, nagging, complaining, anger etc, for as long as you keep complaining about the present circumstance in your home, be it physical, spiritual, financial and so on, your mind will remain focus on it. Life is full of ups and downs, instead of questioning and doubting God, seek Him and get closer to Him during challenging times. According to John Ruskin, “What we think or what we know, or what we believe is, in the end of little consequence. The only consequence is what we do.”
The Bible in Philippians 2:13 (Today English Version) says, “God is always at work in you to make you willing and able to obey His own purpose.” In other words, once you decide to seek for the rightful change, starting with yourself, God is willing to empower you to do the right thing.
We erroneously think that all couples with problem want solution and that when they are offered one, they would eagerly put it to work. The truth is that only few want to do something to improve the situation in their home. Too often, they just want to talk and have someone listen. They are actually reluctant to take action. Even when the most brilliant plans for strengthening their marriage are made available, it would be effort in futility, if you have no desire or commitment to change. All too often, one person is unwilling to take the first step, until he or she sees that his partner has already started down the journey of change.
Too often we find ourselves dealing with the symptom rather than the source of the problem. The truth is that when neither side is willing there is little hope that a marriage problem can be erased. When one side is willing there is ray of hope. When both are willing there is real hope. Is there something you won’t do to please your mate because he or she is not willing to do what you are asking? Such attitude will thwart any hope for real change in your relationship.
Do you want to see positive changes in your home and even in your life? Are there changes you desire? Start by examining yourself and search your heart. Give up trying to change or remake your partner or others. Learn to accept and appreciate the good qualities and traits God gave to your partner He created for you. Philippians 4:8 advises us to “think on these things” in our spouses that are “true, honest, just, pure, lovely, of good report, virtuous, and worthy of praise.”
Are they things that are especially important to you that you feel, need changing in your home? Share them with your mate. If you expect him or her to listen and agree, you must be equally willing to listen and agree to what your partner is asking of you. Decide today whether you are willing to do what you must do to bring about those needed positive changes that will lead to greater harmony and oneness.
It is very important that after deciding to change, that you continue to pray for His strength. There is no substitute for prayer; no easier way. Ask God to change you, your habits, your heart, and your desires. Set and maintain a goal to make your mate the happiest person on earth. (It is possible). Thank Him for your spouse; find something new each day about him or her to thank your Father in heaven for. You will be amazed. Soon, you will be seeing your mate in a whole new way. And because you are working persistently to effect change in yourself; sooner or later, your spouse will see you in a new light.
In your prayers, ask God to help you see yourself as He sees you; ask to God help you acknowledge and confess your weaknesses; ask your Father in Heaven to do for you what you cannot do for yourself. In addition, ask God to help you erase and eradicate those things that are not pleasing to Him; put away self-centred attitude and adopt a more caring and selfless attitude. Finally, ask God to help you to become all that He desires you to be.
Remember nothing changes until you do. So, advisedly, start with the log that is affecting your own vision. Forget about the speck in your mate’s eyes. Soon, it will be washed away. And you will forget it was ever there!