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4 Ways to Prepare to Confront Sinful Activity in Your Spouse’s Life

Every couple will come to a point where one spouse will have to confront the other regarding an issue that’s negatively affecting their marriage. Let’s be honest, nobody likes to be involved on either end of a confrontation. But if you find yourself having to confront your spouse, here are some vital steps to prepare yourself:

  • Prepare your heart. Matthew 7:5, tells us that we need to take the log out of our own eye before attempting to remove the splinter from our spouse’s. Nobody’s without sin, so ask the Lord to forgive you for any sin that has infected your life because of the issue…and to give you the wisdomboldnesshumility, and gentleness that you will need to work through the process.
  • Prepare your proof by documenting the destructive behavior. Matthew 18 explains that we may need witnesses to help back our confrontation. If you have people who have seen or experienced the issue being confronted, invite them to be a part of the process. If you don’t have people witnesses, do you have any other proof like financial statements, screenshots, photos or videos that may come to your aid if your spouse refuses to acknowledge the destructive behaviors? The goal is not to shame your spouse, but to verify the reality of the issue.
  • Prepare the desired action plan and potential consequences. What are your desired outcomes of the confrontation and what will you do if your spouse refuses to take the action you desire? For example, there’s abuse going on. You want to inform your spouse that you and the kids will be leaving for safety’s sake and will not be returning until he or she has completed a professional treatment program. If there are some illegitimate contact with another person, those means of communication must be broken and accountability must be established. If there’s an addiction, what treatment plan? Don’t confront without clearly stating your expectations of desired outcomes and changes of behavior.
  • Prepare your script. You want to carefully plan for what you need to say and how you’re going to say it. Every message has a feeling side as well as a verbal and nonverbal component. Strive to make sure you’re communicating your facts and feelings appropriately and make sure that all of your nonverbals – body language, tone of voice – match the words you’re speaking. If you shout an attack, you’ll probably experience a loud counterattack and your confrontation is going to quickly deteriorate into a blame game. So before you confront, write a script of what and how you want to share your concern and then practice, practice, practice. This will pay off when you actually start to share with your spouse.

Next week, we will talk about about what and how we say what needs to be said…

Female writing out plans

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