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THE DOVE ALLIANCE
"Serving God's Word On Saving Your Marriage"

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"There must be no competition among you, no conceit; but everybody is to be self-effacing. Always consider the other person to be better than yourself, so that nobody thinks of his own interest first but everybody thinks of the other people's interests instead."
(Philippians 2:3-4)
A RELATIONSHIP MUST HAVE VALUE

"And so faith, hope, love abide these three; but the greates of these is love". (1CO 13:13)


Do you ever struggle with how to talk to the woman you love about the things that are important to her, like relationships and feelings? Have you achieved career success only to experience frustration or disappointment in your personal relationships? Are you confused by how hard you work to provide and protect your wife and family as a way to show your love, only to hear that love being questioned because you're not very good at being more "open with your emotions"? And after many times of trying with little success, are you so angry and frustrated that you've started to question whether or not this is the right relationship for you? The truth is, a relationship without a solid, ever-growing emotional connection is a relationship out of balance.

Being in a healthy relationship shouldn't be a struggle, but it does require work! A successful love relationship starts with an understanding of what emotional intimacy really is and how BOTH people need to generate it. To achieve that balance, the emotional connection of your relationship needs to become just as important for you to develop and should feel just as enjoyable and rewarding - as the physical, intellectual, and spiritual connections you have with your wife. Of course, you'll find it a lot more enjoyable and rewarding if you feel your efforts being appreciated and acknowledged by the woman you love, with the added bonus of feeling closer to her.

The fact is, the cultural training men receive of what masculine identity should look and feel like is also one of the major obstacles that prevents men from learning about and valuing their emotional world. This in turn puts men at a disadvantage as to how to help create emotional intimacy in a relationship with a woman. Because of this, men have come to fear that knowing and revealing themselves emotionally might somehow bring their manliness into question. The dilemma for men, however, is that until they can educate themselves and practice some very basic but fundamental partnership skills that involve emotional participation, sustaining a healthy long term intimate relationship will remain a mystery.

A successful intimate relationship starts with comprehending that your wife will feel alone in the relationship unless she can get more than a brief glimpse of what your emotional world looks and feels like from you. This is actually the best way for you to "show up" in your relationship. A successful long term relationship requires a man to develop an awareness of how to act and think more like a "we" instead of just going through life only acting and thinking like a "me". And all of this needs to happen in a way that you feel won't require you to sacrifice your masculinity!

Emotional Immaturity

There is a basic issue that men struggle with that I would say turns into a huge mistake when it comes to making a marriage work long term ... and it is how men ignore - and at times even celebrate - their emotional immaturity!

Creating intimacy with a woman requires some kind of emotional participation from men ... and emotional immaturity makes it virtually impossible for men to become equal intimate partners with a woman.

We all know that the basic challenge for most men is that we are not as familiar with our emotional world as we are with our intellectual and physical worlds. And because of this, any man trying to articulate and reveal his feelings to another person is an experience that goes against all that is manly, because it is a vulnerable thing to do. The whole men-don't-talk-about-their-feelings characteristic of being a man is actually a huge burden on any relationship that aspires to be a partnership.

The idea of a healthy partnership is one that usually requires equal participation in how both people "feed" all aspects of a relationship. This means that the physical, intellectual, emotional, and spiritual aspects of a relationship must be "fed" by both in order for the partnership to feel balanced.

No matter which one of these aspects is "starving" from input by either member of a couple ... that is where one or both people feel alone in the relationship. This is especially felt when the emotional connection is not being attended to.

A single man can get away with not being familiar with his emotional world and do just fine, but the moment he gets into an intimate relationship and tries to get by without sharing his feelings with his partner ... as he remains emotionally disconnected from himself ... it means he will stay emotionally disconnected from her ... and he essentially bails out on his half of the job of feeding the relationship.

One of the most challenging pieces for men to "grow into" in this reconfiguration of gender identity has been to explore the unknown territory of their emotional world. And unfortunately most men don't get the importance of this until ... they get an ultimatum from their wife who threatens to leave the relationship.

From my perspective, authenticity is a crucial piece of what healthy and mature masculinity means. Personal integrity as a man can only come from a truthful and accurate representation of how we feel and what we believe to be true for ourselves. "Showing up" authentically in any situation is a two step process: The first part calls for us to courageously look into our hearts and become aware of whatever is in there, as in ... how do I feel, what is really True for me, and what is my gut telling me right now. The second part of "showing up" calls for us put words to that Truth ... even in the face of disagreement or disapproval from the other person.

There are a couple of things that get in the way of us being real and authentic with our partners: One big obstacle is how we as men not only protect the woman in our lives physically ... but how we also "protect her" from any information (including from us) that may hurt her feelings or make her angry. Which is not intimacy at all.

Of course, what we are really doing in these cases is protecting ourselves from her disappointment in us for not being able to insulate her from the pain of what we have to say to her.

The other obstacle that hinders us from being truly authentic with our mates is ... because we are not familiar with the terrain of our own emotional landscape ... we basically do not trust our own abilities to get our emotional needs met - especially if we reveal them to somebody!! This makes us tentative - if not downright scared - to venture forth let someone else see what is inside us.

Because of these obstacles:

1. There are ways that we may still feel alone, even when we are in a relationship.

2. There are ways that we may still feel unfulfilled--even if we make a lot of money and have successful careers.

3. There are ways that we don't know who we really are or what we really are passionate about.

Expressing Needs Without Being Needy

Most men want to know why women always want to talk about their feelings. And you should try to understand is this: Emotional intimacy really is the glue of a relationship, and women are acutely aware of this fact. Because women are more familiar with their emotional world, they are by definition more aware of their emotional needs. And having needs is NOT the same thing as being needy!

All men and all women have needs. As humans, we have physical needs, we have intellectual needs, we have spiritual needs, and yes...we have emotional needs!

But being needy?? ... that is something altogether different.

Being needy means that a person looks to - and even expects - some other person, place, or thing to fulfill their own personal needs ... as opposed to taking the time, energy, and courage to learn how to satisfy and "fill in" one's own sense of wholeness. It is a healthy thing for a woman and a man to look to their intimate relationship as the place to get emotional needs met ... as long as there is no emotional dependency created where it is just expected by both people that their "job" is to be the sole resource of getting each other's needs met.

Again, because women have more of a working relationship with their feelings, their need for emotional intimacy and depth is usually way different than men's. Women search for deep intimacy with their girlfriends, then they look for that same level of intimacy in their relationship with their man.

But that's when most men start to get confused about how to do that, and then they start to feel inadequate because she reminds him that she isn't getting her emotional needs met with him.

Men have to understand that they have different levels of need for emotional intimacy in their romantic relationships then their wives do. The trick is how man learn to dialog about these differences without freaking out about them.

Men don't have to talk about their feelings the same way that women do. Men just have to understand that until they get better at doing it, their ability to be real is VERY limited, and their ability to create and sustain intimacy is VERY limited.

The emotional needs of a relationship really is the glue that not only defines the quality of a relationship, but also keeps that relationship together. And the emotional connection of every relationship needs to be forged equally by both people. This puts men in the unenviable position of having to "play catch up" in terms of what they have to contribute emotionally.

A lot of times it comes as too little, too late for the woman because she has usually gotten past her limit of frustration and loneliness to try to save the marriage. Most men try to get help to save a troubled marriage only after a wife threatens to leave.

Many of you reading this right now may be doing so because your wife shoved this into your hands and said, "Read this web site, or go get some therapy, or go to some seminar to figure out your stuff, or else I'll be gone." What is both sad and amusing about this is that, the one thing that men get relatively little information about as he grows up is how emotional maturity can help a man succeed when it comes to creating intimacy in a relationship. The biggest reason for this is that the one thing that men get relatively zero information about is how to recognize and acknowledge their own emotional world. It's not any one man's fault, but it is a condition that pretty much every man has to deal with sooner or later.

It's probably safe to assume that you've gotten some sort of "Wake Up Call" about what you do and don't do in your relationship with your wife that has sent you looking for information on the internet for help. A common "Close Call" for a man is having the woman in his life threaten to end their marriage because of his reluctance to finally look at and own up to his behavior that has helped drive the relationship toward unhappiness and disaster.

The thought of ending up alone .... possibly forever .... usually gets his attention once she threatens to walk out, at which point the proverbial ball is in his court to demonstrate his willingness to "work" on the relationship.

At this point women need to see some concrete form of action from their man, like getting some relationship coaching, getting into therapy, attending a seminar, reading a book .... The bottom line is, it requires that most desperate of acts reserved for only the most drastic and extreme circumstances for a man, which is...

...actually asking for help!

Sometimes it takes one of these "Close Calls" to smack us upside the head for the "Wake-Up Call" to really penetrate the protective layers that keep men emotionally inaccessible ... kind of like the veneer of self-control we exude to throw women off the scent when they've once again pushed our inadequacy button!

Whichever way it happens, there comes a personal moment of clarity when men must finally start to recognize a few basic truths about themselves as man, such as:

* Growing up as boys, we bought the lie that understanding and expressing our emotional needs was not a manly way for a boy or a man to be,

* Which has impaired our ability to express what we feel in our hearts,

* Which hinders our ability to take a stand for our Personal Truth,

* Which keeps us playing the role of "emotionally immature little boy" in our adult relationships with women,

* Which keeps us from learning how crucial emotional maturity is to creating and sustaining the emotional intimacy of a relationship with a woman,

* Which keeps us torpedo-ing our relationships,

* Which keeps us alone.

Life has it's way of exerting a sense of urgency on us to live a life that is meaningful and to be able to share it with one special person. You may have a sense of this in your twenties, but for most men it usually kicks into high gear as we ripen into our thirties, forties, and fifties ... because that's when Life has it's way of kicking our butts into humbly admitting to ourselves that something or someone is missing from our personal happiness equation. That's when the "Wake-Up Call" arrives. And every man gets one. And another. And another. Until he finally wakes up and chooses to do something about what isn't working in his life. Or he continues to live a life destined toward personal mediocrity.

The best way to being approaching your relationship with your wife is to:

FIRST:

Put away your ego and your defensiveness ... and actually consider the possibility that you have some blind spots about your personality and/or behavior that are having a negative effect on the relationship. This is a tough one because it means you have to admit to yourself that you haven't succeeded at something that is hugely important to you. And not succeeding at something important never feels good.

Just remember that until you commit yourself to discovering what your blind spots are, they will remain out of your awareness ... and will ALWAYS inevitably sabotage your relationships.

SECOND:

As was mentioned above, open yourself up to learning some new and different tools about relationships ... like reading a book, signing up for some relationship coaching, getting into therapy, attending a relationship seminar. It all starts, however, with acknowledging to yourself that you don't have all the answers ... and maybe even asking for help.

If you're the kind of man that prefers to handle your problems all by yourself ... this will be really uncomfortable for you. But do it anyway!

THIRD:

Do whatever you can to pro-actively apply these tools to making your relationship better. Work with your wife create a mature, adult partnership where you both "have each other's back" ... where you both give each other the benefit of the doubt ... where you both forge a genuine trust in each other ... where you both hold each other accountable to the greater good of the relationship in a compassionate and caring way.

"The Wake Up Call" is a moment you want to be able to look back at five or ten years from now and be able to say to yourself ... "That was when I finally got it that I had to figure some stuff out about myself in your marriage, or else I knew I would end up alone in my life". There really is nothing more important for you to be doing than learning how to cherish and succeed at your intimate marriage and relationship with your wife ...

The Weaker Vessel:

The name, "The Weaker Vessel", was derived from I Peter Chapter 3 Verses 7-9 where The Word of God explains how husbands and wives are to treat each other.

Verses 7,8 & 9 reads:

"Likewise, ye husbands, dwell with them according to knowledge, giving honor unto the wife, as unto The Weaker Vessel, and as being heirs together of the grace of life; that your prayers be not hindered. Finally, be all of one mind, having compassion one of another, love as brethren, be pitiful, be courteous. Not rendering evil for evil, or railing for railing; but contrariwise blessings; knowing that ye are thereunto called, that ye should inherit a blessing."

The Word of God refers to wives as, The Weaker Vessel. This by no means, suggests that women are subservient, and not equal in knowledge to men. It means that in most cases men are physically stronger than women and husbands should honor their wives as such... But; it goes far deeper than that. Man was created from dust of the earth but woman was created from man's flesh and bone; which gives woman equality with man.

"Behind every great man their is a great woman". This saying is more true than is realized. Woman is the apple of God's eye and also a diamond in His crown. It is woman's intuition that rises a man into his glory with God. But also a woman can and will become what her husband is, or to be. In other words: if you live a life of folly then so will your wife - if you live your life in God's word so will your wife. You are her spiritual leader on every level of her life. God had commanded man to be totally responsible for his wife. And gentlemen - this is why your relationship with your wife must have value. To build a marriage takes much courage and fortitude with more love than one could possibly understand. Your marriage to your wife was blessed and received by God and He does expect every man to care for his wife accordingly to His word in scriptures....

For man - this is the biggest challenge of his life time - no greater task for man than to place a death blow upon his pride and his ego.... This challenge is what separates the men from the boys. 90% fail marriage are due to man's ego and pride. And to separate man's esteem from his own self-sufficient ways is only the beginning of saving your marriage.

But the real question is: Are you willing to lay down your life for her? Are you willing to die for your wife at any cost? If not; then I suggest to leave this site and pray for the best - because that is exactly what you have too do in order to save your marriage....

The most precious thing for a woman is having a man who is tender-hearted. She, herself would lay her life down for such a man. She will respond to you in such a way would be greater than your dreams. But you first must know what it is to have a tender-heart. And throughout this website you will learn the quality of a tender-heart provided you are willing to learn; and willing to give yourself to your wife with a humble spirit.

What does it mean to lay down your life?

In the physical sense - yes. You are always to protect your wife with your own life. But we are talking about the biblical sense. What does the Bible say about laying down your life for your wife? There are many scriptures that will guide you to the meaning of "laying ones life down for another". And it begins with "unconditional love". You must always remember that you are the sole proprietary of your wife's heart. You are responsible for any pain and hurt you may cause, or place upon your wife's heart. That includes all actions on your part, which includes any and all words that are painfully and recklessly said; intentional, or unintentional.

Unconditional love is the beginning of placing a death blow upon your pride and ego. You cannot love your wife if your pride and ego separates your heart from your emotions. You must always be thinking with "the mind of Christ". If you get angry with your wife for one reason or another - then this means you do not love her with unconditional love. Unconditional love finds no fault in your wife. This means: you must look upon yourself and find the fault that lies within you. A woman will respond accordingly to your actions and your words. If they are negative - then she too will be negative. If they are positive - then so will your wife respond; to the tender-heart and love you projected towards her from you. This is all part of giving honor and respect towards your wife. Because she is the weaker vessel.

How does one place a death blow upon pride and ego?

First you must have a greater understanding of the words "pride" and "ego".

PRIDE: (1) : the quality or state of being proud: as a : inordinate self-esteem : conceit b : a reasonable or justifiable self-respect c : delight or elation arising from some act, possession, or relationship. (2) : proud or disdainful behavior or treatment : disdain. (3) a : ostentatious display b : highest pitch.

EGO: (1): the self especially as contrasted with another self or the world. (2) a : egotism 2 b : self-esteem. (3): the one of the three divisions of the psyche in psychoanalytic theory that serves as the organized conscious mediator between the person and reality especially by functioning both in the perception of and adaptation to reality - compare.

In the definitions above there is no humility.

Humility - Humble: (1): not proud or haughty : not arrogant or assertive. (2): reflecting, expressing, or offered in a spirit of deference or submission (as humble apology) (3) a : ranking low in a hierarchy or scale : insignificant, unpretentious b : not costly or luxurious.

In order to be humble; pride and ego must not be presence within one's spirit. Humility is a fruit of the spirit and is recognized by anyone through actions of another being.... Being humble towards your wife is a virtue in which will spread like a river towards others in your life. So how do you place that death blow on pride and ego?

Jesus Christ is your answer: You first must confess your arrogant ways to our Lord. If you are arrogant towards you wife then you are also the same with others in your life; including your children. Your confession must be from the heart and be recognized as such within your spirit. Then ask our Lord to forgive you and repent as to not ever again live your life with pride and ego. And our Lord will forgive you and if you listen very carefully; The Holy Spirit will instruct you on how to remain humble towards all those you encounter in your life.

We will now move on to the "10 Commandments For A Husband".

 
God's Love From Genesis Through The Revelation.

My Child,

You may not know me, but I know everything about you.
(Psalm 139:1)

I know when you sit down and when you rise up.
(Psalm 139:2)

I am familiar with all your ways.
(Psalm 139:3)

Even the very hairs on your head are numbered.
(Matthew 10:29-31)

For you were made in my image.
(Genesis 1:27)

In me you live and move and have your being.
(Acts 17:28)

For you are my offspring.
(Acts 17:28)

I knew you even before you were conceived.
(Jeremiah 1:4-5)

I chose you when I planned creation.
(Ephesians 1:11-12)

You were not a mistake, for all your days are written in my book.
(Psalm 139:15-16)

I determined the exact time of your birth and where you would live.
(Acts 17:26)

You are fearfully and wonderfully made.
(Psalm 139:14)

I knit you together in your mother's womb.
(Psalm 139:13)

And brought you forth on the day you were born.
(Psalm 71:6)


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