We went to a marriage conference yesterday. It was a great time for me and my wife. It reinforced that the steps we have taken over the last 8 or 9 years are correct.
As I was reflecting this morning on many things I realize how “religion” and our theology can potentially get in the way of good communication if we don’t have good theology and understand the doctrine of sin deeply. Its been important for me and my wife to discuss some of the more important scriptures that drive us for change and then ultimately to agree.
Our sin addiction is a part of the ordinary human experience. If that is not understood then the natural tendency in communication will be to have a good outward behavior by covering up the real tendency of the heart. James says “if we confess our sins and pray for each other we will be healed” (paraphrased from my head). I hope you can see how “religion” gets in the way of communication…. but a gospel-centric viewpoint brings out good “heart” communication because it understand and highlights the doctrine of sin while showing a holy God putting on flesh in Jesus Christ to impute his Glory on man. Therefore, the gospel-centric understanding of scripture and a understanding of the doctrine of sin becomes the power of God to create change in the heart and to actually create in man a new creation as he is sanctified.
This idea is a significant one in the sanctification of man and in marriages, I believe. Also, its important to understand this if you want an A-plus marriage because if you don’t get this you will be more impressed with “externals” of your spouse than the real heart and real character of a person.
In a nutshell …. Religion restrains our heart …. but the Gospel motivates our heart and replaces man-made idols with a savior!
I hope your following my train of thought on this.