Matthew R. Perry

If You Are Married, Go to a Marriage Conference — If You Are a Pastor, Offer One At Your Church

In Family, Marriage on August 18, 2007 at 11:27 pm

This past week, I have been on vacation. While the majority of the vacation consisted of working on our new home (no small task, no matter how well the condition), the end portion of our vacation was helpful and much needed. Cindy and I right now are in Cincinnati at a hotel enjoying getting reacquainted — not easy with me being the pastor of a church and us being the parents of four small children.

The time in Cincinnati was centered around a marriage conference held at the Mt. Carmel Baptist Church entitled Toward a Growing Marriage. This conference was led by Gary Smalley of the Five Love Languages fame. I must say this to all of you who may come across this page:

If you are married, go to a marriage conference at least once per year. Every marriage could use a tune-up, and many marriages could use resuscitation. Gary Smalley helped us on some biblical and practical levels about communication, conflict, sex, and a myriad of other issues. What helped us as well was the fact that two other couples came from our church and we had a wonderful time of fellowship and discussion about the conference.

If you are a pastor, offer a marriage seminar, retreat, or discipleship small group at your church soon. We as pastors tend to simply look at the sparkly-clean folks who come into our church and truly believe that all is well with them. But when a rash of people begin to ask you questions about their marriage or, even worse, say, “My spouse has asked me for a divorce,” that’s when you realize you have to be reactive and address the issue immediately, and proactive and deal with possible issues which tend to come up in every marriage.

So let me ask you, what kind of marriage conferences or resources have helped you in the past that you could recommend to the rest of us? Leave your comments in the comments section of this blog entry.

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