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Secret To A Great Relationship Part 2: Faithfulness

Secret to a great marriage
Photo courtesy of carynnoel.com
This is the second of an 8-part series from Jimmy Evans at MarriageToday from his book, Our Secret ParadiseSeven Steps for Building a Secure and Satisfying Marriage. This series focuses on the 4th secret—Friendship. Even before marriage, these keys will help you become the kind of person you want to date and the kind of person to look for in a potential mate.

First Key For Friendship – Faithfulness

Recently, I sat on an airplane between two men who turned out to be a couple of buddies going to a football game together.

“We went on a fishing trip to Canada last year,” one of them said, “and I left my wife of seven months pregnant and starting early labor pains.”

I remember thinking, “I’m going to a marriage seminar. This conversation will make a great illustration.”

Then he added, “It was okay; she didn’t want me to miss the trip.”

I was skeptical. “Did you pay a price when you got home?” I asked.

“Oh yeah, it’s all on a voucher system. She got me when I got home. Sure, I guess it affected her. But she’ll get over it.”

You and I know it affected her. And the clear message he sent to her was, “These guys are my friends, and you’re not.”

The fact is, with every great friend you have, there is always a positive history—a string of sacrifices and choices each of you make for the sake of the other and for your relationship. Without that history, there is no meaningful friendship.

I was preparing to leave for a ministry engagement not long ago when a family member of some close friends was admitted to the hospital with a serious illness. I was busy getting ready to leave, tying up a lot of loose ends. But when I heard the news, Karen and I went to the hospital.

After we stepped outside the hospital room, the father joined us in the hallway and said, “Thank you so much for being there for us, as always. You are true friends.”

He was right. That had been true in the history of our relationship. There is always a positive history with friends. The Bible tells us that “a friend loves at all times, and a brother is born for adversity” (Prov 17:17). Making your wife or your husband your best friend begins with committing yourself to being faithfully there for them, especially when they need you most.

It is with the fire of selflessness and sacrifice that strong bonds of friendship are forged.

Be sure to read the rest of the series.

This excerpt is from chapter 10 of Jimmy Evans’ book, Our Secret Paradise published by Regal Books. Used with permission from MarriageToday.

About MarriageToday with Jimmy Evans

Since founding MarriageToday in 1994, Jimmy and Karen Evans have encouraged and coached countless couples in building rewarding marriages and healthy homes. With more than 50% of unions in America ending in divorce, the Evans are committed to sharing proven truths that can make the most troubled marriage good, and any good marriage great. They bring more than 25 years experience equipping and teaching couples to MarriageToday’s mission to restore the dream of marriage in America. Jimmy and Karen divide their time between Amarillo, Texas, where Jimmy serves as Head Elder of Trinity Fellowship, and Dallas, the location of MarriageToday’s headquarters. He and Karen have two grown children and four grandchildren.
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