3 Important Questions to Ask when Holiday Stress Looms

Nearly twenty years ago, I journaled about a holiday moment in my life that was filled with more stress than love. On this particular occasion, I was worn-down by trying to do too much decorating, shopping, cleaning, cooking and entertaining. At that time, my husband wasn’t as involved in helping me with those kinds of […]

What Extending Grace Looks like in Marriage – Plus Linkup

One of the things that has often confounded me is, when do I extend grace? Is it all the time? And what does grace even look like, especially in marriage? I think of grace like forgiveness—letting something go. After all, the Lord certainly has let go of the need to punish me for my sin—dying […]

First Step to Get Your Heart Right in a Messy Marriage And Linkup

The continual mending of my messy marriage can be traced back to one foundational shift in my life that created a cascade of other important and healing choices. Ultimately this had everything to do with my heart in relation to God. So with that in mind, I’m going to begin a new series that will […]

Staying Together When Stress Pulls You Apart

Today we’re back with a video where my husband Gary and I discuss a reader’s question about the challenge of staying together when stress threatens to pull you apart. In our video, we share fourteen different principles and steps that we try to practice whenever the tensions in our lives begin to divide us. Click […]

5 Differences between Journaling and Prayer Journaling Plus Linkup

Last week I began a mini-series on prayer journaling that naturally sparked some conversation about journaling in the comments. Though journaling and prayer journaling are synonyms, I wanted to write a post about the differences I see between these two helpful practices. So I hope you’ll indulge me for a bit of a “rabbit trail” […]

Victim Love Style in Marriage And FMTM Linkup

Here at Messy Marriage, I’ve talked about a “Victim Mentality” a lot over the years, but this isn’t necessarily what I’m talking about today. A victim mentality can develop in any person’s life regardless of their love style. A victim mentality is a fixation on a real or supposed victimizer in one’s life, feeling helpless […]

Vacillator ‘Love Style’ in Marriage Plus FMTM Linkup

Should I post on the Vacillator today, or not? Um, sure . . . I think I will! No, wait a minute . . . definitely not! Well . . . maybe I should! Just a little sarcasm to get this “love style” train chugging down or perhaps backing up along the proverbial track! My […]

How does listening heal when working toward reconciliation?

I’m answering in the form of a video an MM reader’s question today on the issue of listening to his wife’s pain when coming to the reconciliation table. Unfortunately, the process of reconciliation can be tough, even brutal for both parties. But it’s sort of like surgery. Whenever we need it, we submit ourselves to […]

Why I’m an ‘Avoider’ in My Marriage and FMTM

I’m what’s referred to as an “Avoider” in my “love-style.” I’ve also got a dash of “Vacillator” and a pinch of “Pleaser” in me as well. Even though it might sound like it, I’m not talking about a tasty autumn soup. 😉 What I’m referring to are some of the “love-styles” that are developed from“imprints” […]

How to Find Hope with a Perfectionist Spouse

Have you ever felt like your spouse is a perfectionist? Maybe a little too critical and “problem-solving” in moments where you’d like to simply be heard, cheered on or comforted? [Tweet “Well, I’ve been there (with my mate) and I’ve done that (to my mate). #perfectionisticmate”] One of the double-edge gifts that God has given […]