II Sam. 23:20-23. Benaiah chased lions. We need to be lion-chasers. Face and deal with the issues in your life. Fight or flight; scared or scarred. Choose to fight and have scars. Paul had many “battle scars” from fighting for the Lord Jesus Christ. God is raising up an army running to, not from, the battle. There are times when we need to fight in order to fulfill God’s will. What are you chasing? Is it bigger than you? Others are watching your life to see if you are for real. When Benaiah chased the lion into the pit, he could have stopped there. Don’t be an “almost Christian”. Get a word from God and get ahead. Benaiah had a faith resume. What matters most is what you do with what you have. Benaiah didn’t stop at the side of the pit, but he got into the pit and killed the lion. Obey God and don’t be a nay-sayer. David killed Goliath and said that the battle is the Lord’s. He ran to the Philistine. Benaiah was more honored and became David’s bodyguard. He was in the presence of the king the rest of his days. Step out in faith and be in God’s presence.
Patty tells how to to fight fair in a marriage. 1) Don’t remain silent, but talk through conflicts. 2) Learn to fight in a healthy, understanding way. 3) Be a peace-maker. 4) Don’t involve other people in your conflicts. 5) Don’t be historical. 6) Don’t find fault and blame your spouse. Paul taught on wedding crashers. 1) Unrealistic expectations. 2) Different priorities and goals. 3) In-laws. 4) (Extra-marital) affairs. 5) Not appreciating your spouse’s God-given personality. 6) Influence of birth order. 7) Growing apart rather than growing together. Patty shared about wedding builders: appreciation of and valuing of your spouse: completing each other, not competing with each other, and encouraging each other. Focus on your spouse’s good points. Paul taught on how a man can meet his wife’s emotional needs: #1 Build up her self-esteem. (A woman needs to hear her husband say these 10 things: You are beautiful. You’re a great lover. You’re so smart. You’re my best friend. You’re the most important person to me. How much money do you need for shopping? You’re the only one for me. I’d be lost without you. You’re funny. I love you. #2 Make her laugh and have a sense of humor. #3 Surprise her with good surprises often. #4 Pray together. Paul ended the session by reminding everyone to pray, focusing on the power of the cross as a place of forgiveness, healing, and reconciliation.
Patty Endrei shares how we are to love each other in our marriages. Communication and loving your mate the way that pleases him/her are important. We communicate through: tone of voice, eye contact, smile, and touch. The areas of communication are consistent, planned heart to heart exchanges which bring life. Listen and consider the timing of what you share. Put action behind your words, and communicate by focusing on the positive in the other person. What you say about your mate, you’re saying about yourself because the two of you are one. Words are powerful, and we will be judged by our words. Communicate with love and spend time with Christ and each other. Paul Endrei: Communication is the lifeblood to your marriage. Our marriages are testimonies for the Lord. If communication stops in a marriage, the devil will start communicating. Have a date night. Men, give your wife your full attention when she is talking. Listen to and compliment her publicly and privately. There was an exercise in which each spouse separately responded to these sentence beginnings: I am happiest when… and I am saddest when… The five languages of love according to Gary Chapman are: 1) Gift-giving, 2) words of affirmation, 3) physical touch, 4) quality time, and 5) acts of service. Men are visually wired, and women are verbally wired. Sex is a God-thing (Gen. 1:3-2:24, 25). Sex is spiritual. Sex is sacred. Not having regular sexual relations in your marriage affects your spiritual and prayer life. Paul explains the old Jewish way of a man’s proposal and his and his wife’s marriage consummation. The glory of God was an important part of the wedding and the sexual part of the marriage. Sex represents the glory of God in our marriages. God opened and closed the Word with a wedding. What keeps couples apart? Time, energy levels, fear of getting pregnant, change of life issues, kids… Did you know that having regular sexual relations is spiritual warfare and helps you live a longer life? Sixty-eight percent of women are not satisfied with their sexual partner. What can help decrease that? Sex is like a sports game. It takes pregame warm-up; throughout the day, men communicate your love for your wife and choose the words that you speak carefully. Someone gets hurt when there is no warm-up. In a real game, there are four quarters, but the average male only lasts two minutes. It’s a pacing, not racing, event. It takes a woman eight to twelve minutes of stimulation. The game isn’t over until both get to score. The post-game is the time to love one another, communicate with compliments and constructive criticism what is the good, the bad, and the uncomfortable. Talk and touch.
Paul and Patti Endrei are ministers on the topic of marriage. Paul taught on the levels of marriage and the triple cord (physical, soul, help mate) and the 5 pillars of marriage sticking points (practically, relationally, emotionally, sexually, and spiritually). Patti spoke on the role of women to encourage and be cheerleaders for their husbands and to marry their husband’s dreams. Paul then continued to teach on how husbands should relate to their wives. Did you know that the #1 enemy of marriage is anger? The final analysis is that our marriage should make us more Christ-like.