I thank you for the lovely rebukes and instructions. While the instruction lines up with the word of God, so do the rebukes.
Perhaps I do need to be utterly disgusted with some chemical controlling my life. I Corinthians 6:12, I'm sure, will guide me there through a study of the Word and its application in my life. The studies will include the links you have provided.
The situations between me and my wife clearly boil down to fear and lack of trust. I'm thankful that there still people who do not pervert the word of God by their compromising and wresting the Scriptures to suit their own fleshly lusts.
The rebukes have shown me where I err, and the instruction points to a better way.
Surely, love thinks no evil and that is one of the places I do err. Had you been compromising and wresting, I would have never known how straight forward that point is and especially would've never known how so many people say they "love" when it doesn't line up with I Corinthians 13. I do need to start judging myself rather than the family members who have habits that they probably have no clue they are carrying around with them. You have shown me that I need to focus on myself and my spiritual relationship with God and my spouse, not to fear but to trust.
I've seen it so many times where people say they trust when it shows that they don't. I'm thankful that God opened my eyes to see that I am no different than them and that I need to repent, obey, and trust.
Are there verses that we (my wife and I) can apply and practice in our lives to help build genuine trust in the marriage relationship? What are some ways that we can help each other have more trust? Surely, some things are a two-person project. If I am wrong please correct me.
I'm sure you have noticed by now that I am always asking for Scriptures. This is because I know the words of most Bible passages apply to the spirit of all things because God is Spirit, and spirits are beings which no one can see with the natural eye, and the Bible clearly tells us that we must worship God in spirit and in truth. It's also proof that we ourselves also need a teacher. I point that fact out because I have already received knowledge on what my divine calling is. I do agree that the world has influenced my thinking. Perhaps I need to work harder at applying the verse that says "whatsoever things are...think on these things" even to the "transformation by the renewing of my mind".
While I'm typing, it becomes more and more clear that I need to find verses which drive away fear and worry and apply those as well. Probably first. "For God did not give us the spirit of fear but of love, and of power, and of a sound mind".
Wow, that is so profound. One verse having the words "fear", "love", and "sound mind".
Are there verses that we (my wife and I) can apply and practice in our lives to help build genuine trust in the marriage relationship?
What are some ways that we can help each other have more trust?
Are you able to provide a select few of verses to drive away fear and worry?
In regards to fear, please see the article "Overcoming Fears." Most fears stem from nervousness about the unknown. We spend too much time worrying about what cannot be known than dealing with what we do know.
In regards to building trust, it might seem naively simple, but trust (or belief) is a choice that each individual makes. Look through your Bible and notice how often God asks people to believe in Him. It is no different in a marriage. You have to make up your mind that you will trust your wife. Your wife will have to decide that she will trust you. There will be times when that trust might be damaged, but each incident should be addressed as the occasion arises.
The same goes for love. Love is not something that happens to you. It is a choice that you make. The biggest problem with love is that people try to rush it instead of letting it develop gradually over time. For example, when you give your trust to your wife and she demonstrates faithfulness to you, your trust is rewarded and the next time it is needed, your trust is more easily given. Eventually, you won't even have to think about it; you will trust her implicitly. See the article "Love Is ..." for more information. I also would recommend the study The Greatest Love Song Ever Written, especially the lesson entitled "How Do You Build a Love Like Theirs?"
Since my last email, it turns out that a lot of the fears I have are from worldly influences. I'm sure I don't need to give you examples because it's supposed to be all wrapped up into 1 to 4 hours every day known as soap operas. Everywhere I look, I see a soap going on. I don't mean on TV either. I mean the world is so influenced by TV that they begin to believe themselves to actually be living in similar situations from which they cannot escape. Here's one example:
My mother is sick with the later stages of diabetes and her husband is sick with only one of his heart's arteries left and is just now starting to have the most heart pain of his life which may bring death upon him. My mom's ex-husband is pretending to help them in any way he can, while his son (my brother) is finally realizing the truth of why our mom filed for a divorce. My sister is working to help make ends meet while her husband is giving sure signs that he wants to have sexual relations with any woman he finds attractive whether it's his wife or not. And I'm getting gnashed with teeth by my mom's husband because I'm not doing any work while I'm in pain from the work I did the day before.
When I was a child my aunt and uncle moaned and groaned if they weren't able to watch All My Children, One Life To Live, and General Hospital. I was forced to sit there and at least listen to it. I couldn't go anywhere at all while these shows were playing, not even to find any odd jobs to do after school, over the weekend, or during the summer. As you can see, I was brought up in a very manipulative and influential lifestyle.
Not to mention that every single girlfriend (except my wife as far as I know) I had and was just starting to experience the feelings of intimate compassion for them and was soon afterward caught in the act of having sex with other men and then blamed it on the fact that I wouldn't give it to them.
Not to mention the people who forced me to do these things were also telling me on several occasions that they would cut my ding-dong off and they had the knife out holding my down while someone else tried taking my pants off. Later in life, my mom's ex-husband loaded his six-shooter revolver, sent two shots out the door of a church and then held the gun to my brother's head and asked him if he wants to live to see the next minute. I turned to see what exactly he was meaning and looking to the floor in fear I heard the words, "I'll just stick it in your ear!" Lo and behold, I had the barrel of a gun pointed at my ear making very painful contact.
So yes, most, if not all, of my fears stem from worldly influences. In all these situations I was threatened that if I tell anyone I will either not see my family ever again or I will lose my life.
Just to let you know, my mom and stepdad have opened the door to her ex-husband and he is now living with us. This is the same one that pointed the gun at me and my brother, and it seems as if he hasn't changed at all. I feel it would do a great deal of harm to my brother, or my entire immediate family if I were to tell him exactly what all his dad has done to his mom, brothers, and sisters.
To make a long story short, I'm trying to deal with criticism, fear, anger, forgiveness, trust, faithfulness, even love just to name a few.
There is a very comforting verse in the Bible which talks about the unknown. It has nothing to do with ungodly fear or nervousness.
The secret things belong unto the LORD our God: but those things which are revealed belong unto us and to our children for ever, that we may do all the words of this law. (Deuteronomy 29:29 KJV)
And the LORD said unto Satan, Behold, all that he hath is in thy power; only upon himself put not forth thine hand. So Satan went forth from the presence of the LORD. (Job 1:12 KJV)
And the LORD said unto Satan, Behold, he is in thine hand, but save his life. (Job 2:6 KJV)
It is very comforting to know that Satan and his demons and followers are limited in what they can do. For we are commanded by Christ to fear not what man can do to the body and not the soul in Matthew 10:28
I do admit that the natural mind would fear the things of the natural, but there again we come to "be ye transformed by the renewing of your mind."
What are some ways in which my wife and I can demonstrate faithfulness to each other?
Just because those around you are nuts, it doesn't mean you have to join them. Perhaps it would be best at this time for you and your wife to put some distance between yourselves and your worldly family. Move out of the family home and limit your contact to what is polite or necessary. Stop wallowing in self-pity about your past and fix your eyes on the future (Philippians 3:8-14). Your past doesn't describe you. You are who you choose to be. That is why Peter was able to tell Christians to stop living as they had done in the past. "Therefore, since Christ suffered for us in the flesh, arm yourselves also with the same mind, for he who has suffered in the flesh has ceased from sin, that he no longer should live the rest of his time in the flesh for the lusts of men, but for the will of God. For we have spent enough of our past lifetime in doing the will of the Gentiles--when we walked in lewdness, lusts, drunkenness, revelries, drinking parties, and abominable idolatries. In regard to these, they think it strange that you do not run with them in the same flood of dissipation, speaking evil of you. They will give an account to Him who is ready to judge the living and the dead" (I Peter 4:1-5).
In the same manner, trust is demonstrated in what you do and not in what you claim. Trust is just another word for "faith." James told Christians that their faith in God is proven by their deeds, not their words. "What does it profit, my brethren, if someone says he has faith but does not have works? Can faith save him? If a brother or sister is naked and destitute of daily food, and one of you says to them, "Depart in peace, be warmed and filled," but you do not give them the things which are needed for the body, what does it profit? Thus also faith by itself, if it does not have works, is dead. But someone will say, "You have faith, and I have works." Show me your faith without your works, and I will show you my faith by my works" (James 2:14-18). In the same way, trust in a marriage is shown by what you do.
When opportunities arise where you are tempted to express doubt or fear, determine to give your trust to your wife. Act as if you trust her completely and wholeheartedly. It might be tough at first to get your mind to follow your actions, but it will come along in time.