What’s more important to marriage: the heart or the mind?
In today’s society, we tend to separate the two entities. Emotions are said to come from the heart, but thoughts originate from the brain. But is there really a division between the two?
In the Bible, “Heart” occurs over one thousand times, making it the most common anthropological term in the Scripture. It denotes a person’s center for both physical and emotional-intellectual-moral activities.
I believe there isn’t any significant difference between your heart and mind. They work too closely together. Your thoughts cause your emotions, and your entire body and life are affected by those reactions.
What does it mean to be pure in heart?
The dictionary defines pure as “conforming absolutely to a standard of quality; faultless.” If something is pure, it is not contaminated by anything foreign.
Blessed are the pure in heart, for they shall see God. Matthew 5:8
Being pure in heart means that you, in your entirety, are not contaminated by the world. Don’t let anything the world offers pollute your relationship with God.
Being pure in heart is essential for a healthy marriage. Don’t let outside influences taint your view of marriage.
Don’t be double-minded.
As the heart and mind cannot be separated, another way to think about having a pure heart is to avoid being double-minded.
Double-minded people live in a state of continual compromise. Half of their mind wants to live for God, but the other half lives for the things the world has to offer. And when it comes to marriage, they are listening to the world’s lies about what marriage should be.
- You married the wrong person.
- Don’t stay in an unhappy marriage because you deserve to be happy.
- Your spouse should know what you want, and if they don’t find someone who will.
- You fell out of love. It’s okay. It happens to a lot of people.
- My spouse has to change.
- Divorce is an easy solution to my problems.
When you find yourself occasionally believing these lies and compromising your thought life about a godly marriage, you become double-minded.
There is no peace of mind for someone who considers if it would be better to go against God’s Word.
However, God is sure and certain. There is peace in living in God’s will.
We destroy arguments and every lofty opinion raised against the knowledge of God, and take every thought captive to obey Christ, 2 Corinthians 10:5
How does a pure heart affect your marriage?
The devil hates it when we are fully surrendered to God and taking marriage seriously. He’s constantly trying to place doubts and negative thoughts in your mind. If we let these thoughts fester, that’s when trouble comes.
Yes, the temptation to cheat on your spouse is one of Satan’s go-to tricks. You must reject all thoughts of attraction for others. Don’t be fooled. Satan uses not only physical attraction but also emotional attraction to corrupt your heart and tear your marriage apart.
Let marriage be held in honor among all, and let the marriage bed be undefiled, for God will judge the sexually immoral and adulterous. Hebrews 13:4
The thoughts may come. It happens, but if you are pure in heart, you will reject them. Don’t linger on all the things you find attractive about the other person. Spend more time focusing on your spouse’s qualities that brought you together in the first place.
Use this Quarantine time to build your marriage relationship, not think about what could be if you were to take steps toward the other person.
So what can you do to protect your marriage from these thoughts?
Keep the thoughts pure.
As the saying goes, you can’t stop the birds from flying over your head, but you can stop them from making a nest in your hair!
“Life does not control you. What you believe about it, does.” ― Alan Cohen
Are the things running through your mind right now godly, pure thoughts or hateful, evil ones that can ruin your marriage?
Don’t focus on the things the world believes to be true. Their morals, values, and beliefs are not for you! Keep your mind pure by training yourself to stop thinking about those things.
While it may be true that you can’t help if a thought pops into your head, you can decide whether it gets to stay or not. Stop letting evil thoughts rule your life, and make changes in your mindset that will bring about excellent results in your marriage!
We demolish arguments and every pretension that sets itself up against the knowledge of God, and we take captive every thought to make it obedient to Christ. 2 Corinthians 10:5
Follow God’s moral laws
Living a life governed by the moral laws of God is the basis for a marriage worth celebrating.
God’s moral laws declare how a man should live. With commands like you shall not commit adultery, don’t steal, and don’t lie, the Ten Commandments help guide us and bring us a life full of peace, grace, and hope.
Some people believe God gave us the moral law so that he could catch us being bad, but that couldn’t be further from the truth. He gave us these rules so we would know what would pull us away from His love. The laws warn us so that sin won’t destroy us. They convict us so we will turn away from sin, and they condemn those who choose to live apart from God.
God’s moral laws are a reflection of who He is, His character. When we follow them, we are living in His likeness.
When one spouse breaks one of God’s moral laws, it affects the other, whether that’s directly, by committing the offense directly against them or in an indirect way such as the shame that comes when one is caught in a crime.
And don’t think it can’t happen in your marriage. It can. We’ve seen it. And it’s devastating when it does.
“Do not think that I have come to abolish the Law or the Prophets; I have not come to abolish them but to fulfill them. For truly, I say to you, until heaven and earth pass away, not an iota, not a dot, will pass from the law until all is accomplished. Matthew 5:17-18
Don’t flirt with sin.
People who appear to be committed Christians, but who wonder how much they can get away with outside of their marriage without “sinning,” are walking a dangerous path.
People often quote statistics showing that divorce is just as prevalent in Christian marriages as it is in non-Christian ones. But those stats don’t differentiate between those who are truly born-again Christians and those who just call themselves Christian.
Couples who are active in their church have a lower divorce rate than those Christians who are not. (This is not to say their works are what is saving their marriage. Instead, people with a closer relationship with God will usually be the ones who are working in their church.)
Don’t flirt with sin in your marriage. If you are asking yourself if it’s okay to have a friendship with someone of the opposite sex or watch porn, you’re double-minded. It means you have one foot outside your marriage. You need to pull that foot back. There’s a hidden cliff just inches from it.
Being double-minded is a sin. This sin will drive a wedge between you and your spouse. Don’t even entertain the possibility of going outside your marriage for satisfaction. Put energy into improving your marriage instead.
A pure heart is an antidote to temptation.
Your ability to avoid temptation is determined by how close you are to God on the inside. How close you pretend to be on the outside has no effect.
You may think you will never fall into sins that will destroy your marriage, but if you’re letting yourself drift slowly away from Him, you’re leaving an opening. These thoughts may cause you to do something you never thought you would.
Stop trying to straddle the line between sin and your Savior. Stay away from evil influences.
Do not be deceived: “Bad company ruins good morals.” 1 Corinthians 15:33
You can control those thoughts. It takes dedication to the process, but you can do it with God’s help and someone to guide you and keep you accountable.
If you want help eliminating your double-mindedness or impure heart in your marriage, fill out this contact form, and we’ll contact you and set up a time to talk.