Participants: Willie and Wilma Lee
Series Code: MGH
Program Code: MGH000038
00:29 Welcome to Marriage in God's Hands. We are glad to have
00:34 you with us today, and we hope that you'll stay with us,
00:37 and my co-host, who is Wilma Lee, I'm Willie Lee, the host.
00:42 We're happy to have you with us today as we talk about
00:45 - "In Sickness and in Health". - And when we talk about
00:50 in sickness and in health we know that we need a lot
00:53 of prayer because there are needs for divine healing,
00:57 and God can provide that for us, so let us pray together.
01:02 Thank You Lord for having You as our healer because we realize
01:08 that there are many things that happen in this world in which
01:12 we cannot control it, but You are the ultimate controller
01:17 - and the ultimate healer. - And Lord, we are thankful
01:21 that You have not only promised to heal, but to comfort,
01:24 and that you've sent the Holy Spirit to be our comforter,
01:28 and we thank You for that, and we ask all of these things
01:32 in the lovely name of Jesus, amen.
01:38 We're glad to be with you again, and as you can see once again
01:42 we've utilized what has been a traditional phrase of the vows
01:49 "in sickness and in health" to locate our theme for this
01:54 particular program today. There are many things that
02:00 are involved with being in good health, and yet, there are many
02:06 times that good health eludes us, and it affects not only
02:14 1 person in the marriage, it affects the marriage.
02:18 Of course, we could also talk about the health of the marriage
02:21 as well, couldn't we, as well as the health of the individuals
02:23 in the marriage.
02:25 I think that often times we take
02:28 health for granted, and we only talk about physical health as
02:33 a part of who and what we are, but there are so many factors
02:38 to health, there's the emotional health, there's the spiritual
02:42 health, and there are the holistic part of health
02:48 that affects a marriage, and if one partner in the marriage is
02:53 not healthy, then the marriage is not healthy.
02:57 I think that's what John was talking about in 3 John 2
03:01 when he says "Dear friend, I hope all is well with you, "
03:05 "and that you are as healthy in body as you are strong"
03:09 - "in spirit. " - The New Living translation
03:12 really helps us to locate a holistic concept there,
03:18 that's probably true in most relationships, that we often
03:26 misjudge a single purpose and not see the holistic
03:33 purpose in which God wants us to be in good health.
03:38 So what are some of those things that you see just right off
03:42 the top of your head that we might approach as a reason,
03:48 - or a state of good health? - Well, I think often times we
03:52 don't talk about emotional health. We talk often about
03:59 being down, sometimes it's depression and sometimes it's
04:04 not a serious case of depression, it's just some of
04:07 those times when you're just down. I know that I'm one
04:10 of those persons who needs sunshine. So when we have
04:14 a bunch of days when it rains, or it's cloudy, I need light,
04:19 so I'm not necessarily as bright and as sunny as I might be,
04:25 so I'm kind of down, but the Bible says that 2 are better
04:29 than 1, so I depend on you to be the sunshine.
04:33 - You are my sunshine. - Yeah, to keep me going
04:37 on those days when I don't have sufficient outdoor sunshine.
04:43 I guess there are some things that you can help with in that
04:46 way even though...let's talk about this thing a little bit
04:51 because a lot of times we confuse the issues
04:54 of depression, sometimes there is a physiological or
05:01 an emotional cause for a depressed state, or there is
05:06 just a feeling of being down. And none of them really
05:12 have to be clinical depression, there can be other reasons
05:17 for it, but in a relationship where you have that occurring
05:24 too often, what are some of the things that we maybe we ought
05:28 to be look at as a response to that in order to help our
05:34 mate, or to help our marriage to improve?
05:38 Well see, that's why we've talked about dialogue and why
05:42 it is so important to be able to share feelings because if you
05:47 have a relationship that's based on dialogue then it's very
05:51 easy to talk about how you're feeling, and if you're
05:55 comfortable sharing feelings then your spouse will hear what
06:00 you're feeling because they'll not only listening with their
06:02 ears, they'll be listening with their heart, and they can hear
06:07 what's happening, they'll hear the hurts, they'll hear all
06:11 of the things that are really going on, and they'll be
06:15 listening also to the non-verbals, they will be
06:20 picking up things and in that conversation they'll be able
06:26 to pick up on things that maybe the other person won't even
06:31 realize they're expressing. So they'll be able to share
06:36 with them what they are hearing in their sharing.
06:40 And it also helps, I suppose, for that person to be able
06:44 to share that. Sometimes just the sharing of it where it's
06:47 heard and where it's understood as a valid reason for being
06:53 like I am, or at least expressing the feeling that is
06:59 within me, sometimes if you don't have that a depressed
07:04 state, or down period, can exist for a longer period,
07:08 but if you can share it, you can get it out, and there are
07:11 2 instead of 1 then there is a way to help your mate to feel
07:16 on the upside of life because then you can enter into not
07:21 only a dialogue with them where you've been able to locate
07:25 what that is, but then you're ready to also say
07:27 "Well, is this something we need to really pray about? "
07:31 "Is this something where we need to ask God for help"
07:34 "and for assistance? " And/or is it also something
07:38 where we need to say "When is the last time that you've had"
07:42 "a check-up? When is the last time you've seen the doctor"
07:45 "and had a complete physical? Maybe there's more than"
07:50 "1 reason for these things happening. "
07:52 Wouldn't you say that's probably true?
07:55 And that's also another chance to say "And I will go with you"
07:58 because when we care about one another we don't leave
08:03 the other spouse to go and face these things by themselves
08:08 because sometimes that feeling is just being afraid.
08:12 Of course, we know that "perfect love casteth out all fear",
08:20 - isn't that right? - That's true.
08:22 So when there's a loving relationship that gives support
08:25 you can help the other overcome that fear.
08:29 Sometimes we're afraid to hear something that we may not
08:32 have control over, so that's why prayer and action,
08:39 and response is important when there's a question about
08:43 good health in either of the spouses.
08:47 I'm reminded of that story that Dr. Archibald told us
08:52 about how he had the heart problem, but his wife had
08:55 the pain and she kept going to have the exams for the pain,
09:03 but because of her persistence he went and found out he had
09:07 blockages in 4 parts of his heart and without her
09:11 persistence he could have had a massive heart attack and died,
09:15 so sometimes God gives warning in strange ways, but because 2
09:22 people are attuned to each other and it has to do with health,
09:26 - look what happened to him. - Well, that's a very good story
09:31 and it's also something that we need to take into consideration.
09:37 Maybe you need to have more dialogue or communication
09:42 or conversation with your spouse and share feelings.
09:47 We have a tendency at times to hide or to cover feelings
09:51 because we don't want to create a problem for the other person.
09:56 Sometimes hiding that, or covering that can lead to a more
10:01 serious problem if you don't take care of it soon.
10:06 And we're talking about the physical/emotional part of
10:10 the life, they are tied together, are they not?
10:13 Very much so and because they are and because we are very
10:18 closely tied to each other as spouses a lot of times we know
10:22 things even when they're not shared.
10:26 Oh really? How would you know something,
10:29 for instance, what kind of signals would you
10:31 - pick up in me? - I remember when I thought
10:35 that we were buying stock in Tums because you ate
10:41 them a lot, but you weren't talking about it.
10:47 I was utilizing something to cover a symptom, is that
10:51 - what you're saying? - Yes, that's what I'm saying.
10:54 And we found out that that symptom was really covering
11:00 - stress. - Aha, but you weren't talking
11:03 about it, so there was no way to see if it was something we
11:08 could adjust, or something we could deal with, or any other
11:13 - way. - Well, you know, if you're
11:16 attentive to one another and you're close enough to each
11:19 other on a regular basis you can pick up upon those things
11:23 and you can know about and help one another to be in good
11:27 health because it's not just about diet and eating,
11:31 even though that's very important, it's also about how
11:34 the outside world is affecting you and your spouse, and how
11:39 you might be reacting to that, or responding to that.
11:43 I think that that's what spouses do for one another because you
11:48 create the culture within the home so that the home becomes
11:53 a place where it is comfortable and becomes a safe place
11:58 for people to come to, particularly your spouse,
12:03 so that it is a comfortable place.
12:05 It's a safe place and a welcoming place.
12:08 - Definitely. - So that you can pursue
12:11 and provide a healthy atmosphere and environment so that when
12:17 things do go wrong you can see them. A lot of times maybe
12:20 there's so much tension and stress in marriage relationships
12:25 that people might have that you often do not hear,
12:29 and do not see, and cannot understand that there are
12:33 things that are taking place that are causing some of those
12:37 stressful ways, or some of those stressors that create
12:42 illness, because stress does create illness.
12:45 It definitely does, and if you don't have somewhere where
12:48 you can go where it's not stressful then how can you
12:53 compete with what's going on outside?
12:57 Yes, the home, the marriage needs to be a healing
13:00 environment, doesn't it? We can say that, and it's
13:02 something that we need to make sure others understand.
13:06 Create a healing environment for your spouse, let that
13:10 healing be in you as it is in Christ, and let it be in your
13:14 spouse and be responsive to one another because maintaining that
13:18 good, healthy feeling will help you to have a happy
13:23 and a fruitful marriage. We'll be right back because
13:26 we have some other exciting things to talk about in health.
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14:14 Welcome back to Marriage in God's Hands. We're talking about
14:17 marriage in sickness and in health, so we want you
14:22 to continue with us in our discussion, and we also want you
14:26 to dialogue with your spouse because we're going to be
14:31 touching on some things that are very current things that are
14:35 happening around us in the world today and how they might
14:38 affect a marriage, and how they might affect the people in
14:42 that marriage in ways that are unhealthy, and we want to talk
14:47 about how God is there for us. 2 Corinthians 1:3,4 says:
14:52 "All praise to God, the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ. "
14:57 "God is our merciful Father and the source of all comfort, "
15:02 "He comforts us in all our troubles so that we can"
15:06 "comfort others. When they are troubled we will be able"
15:10 "to give them the same comfort God has given us. "
15:16 So this really speaks to the point, when you have a marriage
15:20 relationship God can utilize the strength of the comfort
15:25 that God gives to one in order to pass it on and help
15:29 the other partner in marriage. You know, I guess I like that
15:34 word "comfort" because when God told His disciples that He
15:39 would send them another comforter I'm always reminded
15:43 of comfort as that quilt, that blanket that you could draw
15:47 around you because it just makes it very close, very cozy
15:54 and very next to you, and that means that this is not something
15:59 distant, this is something very practical and up close.
16:03 - and very personal. - Intimate.
16:06 Yes, and who better to really help a partner or a spouse
16:11 except the one who is the most intimate person in that
16:16 relationship and because your children are displaced a lot of
16:20 times and cannot be there, either they're too young or
16:24 they're too busy building their lives, so you get to grow
16:29 together and you get to know your spouse pretty well, and
16:32 can pick up on things that are happenings and also deal with
16:36 things that are sometimes catastrophic that come into
16:41 a relationship. I can recall times when my father went
16:48 through Alzheimer's and his spouse had quite a chore trying
16:57 to adjust to the fact that there was an illness that was between
17:02 them, that it wasn't him as a person because the personality
17:06 began to be accentuated in certain ways, and she was taking
17:11 it personally and it was difficult to remind her that
17:15 this is a disease, that this is an illness speaking in him,
17:23 and that it's not personally against you.
17:26 Spouses are the best people though to adjust to some
17:32 difference that has happened in sickness, and ultimately
17:34 if you live long enough you will come to a time when you need
17:39 somebody. So what happens during those times when one spouse
17:44 begins to deteriorate and not be able to help themselves
17:48 - as much? - It is a very challenging
17:52 situation, but when you stand there on your wedding day,
17:57 young, fresh, you don't think about what you're saying:
18:01 "In sickness and in health" because that seems so far
18:05 removed and the person, particularly as we are seeing
18:10 more and more people live longer and we're seeing
18:12 Alzheimer, the person who suffers from Alzheimer is not
18:16 that person that you stood next to on that wedding day.
18:20 They may look the same, but they certainly don't behave the same.
18:24 So then you have to call on that God who is comfort because
18:29 that is the only way you could make it through no matter
18:34 what other support you have. That person that you know
18:38 and you love is no longer there, but your commitment to
18:42 the marriage, your commitment to that person is what carries
18:46 - you through. - That's why it's good, I feel,
18:50 to have a relationship that builds for the long run
18:56 because things do change. Sometimes it's not an illness
19:02 that is catastrophic that cuts off the life and then just
19:05 leaves the other one alone, sometimes in that person
19:09 life is diminished and you still have to be there.
19:13 So if there has not been a real love and a real closeness,
19:17 an intimate understanding built between the 2 spouses then
19:24 there are going to be some difficult times, and you must
19:27 pray to God that God will allow the strongest spouse to remain
19:34 to pass on, as the verse says, to comfort and to give the help
19:40 - to the needy spouse. - That's true. What is so
19:48 prevalent now is that there are people who are now caring for
19:53 an aging, or aging parents, so the health issue now becomes
19:59 on a marriage that "What do you do as you parent parents? "
20:04 Well that involves then sometimes 2 people because
20:09 you're talking about an in-law relationship, and that means
20:13 that as a married couple you can no longer look at one
20:19 side of the family in a different way than other
20:24 than your parent, because even though they may not be your
20:29 blood parent you have married into that family and it becomes
20:33 your family. So you need to build those relationships early
20:39 in your marriage because the time may come when you will be
20:43 the only source of help as a couple to your aging parents,
20:47 as you've said. What are some of the things that you really need
20:49 to expect to have help with and to be strengthened as you
20:55 reach out, let's say like in your mother, for instance,
20:59 even though she's fairly healthy at her age,
21:04 there are things that she needs assistance with.
21:08 Well, I think the greatest challenge as you look at parents
21:12 aging is that suddenly the roles are reversed and we've
21:15 become more of the parent to you parent because there are
21:20 things that you suddenly have to be responsible for in their
21:23 lives, and it's not something that you ever expected to have
21:28 to do, so there's this kind of role reversal that's not in
21:35 - the rule books. - There's no rules that govern
21:37 - that? - No.
21:40 And plus, let's admit that it's different in every personality
21:43 and temperament, and a lot of times depending upon your
21:46 relationship younger, that relationship when the roles
21:50 reverse you still have those same temperaments
21:56 and it's not always easy. So one of you in your marital
22:04 and spousal unit, one of you needs to be there to bring
22:08 comfort to the other who's going through some difficult
22:13 adjustments because when you get back from handling
22:16 the situation or dealing with something that didn't turn out
22:19 exactly like you planned, somebody needs to be there
22:23 to make sure that you are still feeling okay about yourself
22:30 because parents have an affect on you even when
22:32 the role is reversed, they have
22:34 a way of putting you in your place. So when you come back
22:37 home you kind of test your sanity, "Am I really okay? ",
22:43 after that, so the other person says "Yes, you are okay, "
22:47 "you've done the best by your parent, and it's a good thing"
22:50 "that you're there and I love you for it".
22:54 So maybe those are the kinds of things that happen in
22:57 a marriage, that if you have a good relationship that you've
23:00 built up and the communication has been good, and the comfort
23:04 is there when you have the need, then it's easier.
23:07 Well, it's also important for the spouse who's parent, it is
23:13 not to be supportive because it is a challenge for
23:17 a relationship to have to be responsible for another adult
23:23 because this is also a time in life where a lot of times
23:27 the couple has planned "This will be our time for us to do"
23:32 "things that we have put aside because hopefully we'll have"
23:35 "no children to be responsible for and it will just be the"
23:39 "2 of us", and then now here's another person for whom we now
23:43 have responsibility. So it is a challenge, this is a health
23:48 challenge that couples don't usually plan for, so it's
23:53 another challenge to the marriage that couples don't
23:57 think about until they're faced with it.
23:59 That's right, they may not be either an old aged need,
24:05 it might be a younger aged need, you might still have children in
24:09 a home, teenagers, or younger, that you are still trying
24:14 to launch, or trying to prepare for the world
24:18 and you may have a parent who needs
24:21 help also, so that puts an extra stress when you're talking
24:25 about sickness in "sickness and in health",
24:28 that puts another stressor on the marriage.
24:31 All the more why you really need to have a strong spiritual
24:34 connection and a strong marital connection during those
24:39 difficult times. I wonder what it's like sometimes when
24:43 an accident happens and it causes an injury.
24:47 I can remember an accident happened to me and you had
24:50 to do all the driving for me, you have to help me get dressed,
24:54 you have to help do a lot of things for me and I didn't
24:58 - consider myself so old. - Well, I don't know how you
25:02 felt, I thought it was rather interesting because it was
25:06 certainly a challenge for a while, but we managed it
25:11 and I guess that was a health issue, huh?
25:15 Yeah, well it does test you, doesn't it, and it tests your
25:19 relationship, and I think the point is more than anything else
25:23 that whenever there is anything out of the norm, be it mental,
25:28 emotional or physical, or all of the above, that there must
25:34 be a holistic health, a sense of health to your relationship
25:39 with God and with one another so that when those times come
25:44 you have the flexibility to be able to move in whichever
25:48 direction you need to move and to do what needs
25:50 to be done to keep the marriage going.
25:53 I guess you also have to have a sense of humor.
25:56 You've got to have a sense of humor, and we got that,
25:58 let me tell you, we hope that you've got a sense of humor too,
26:01 but we also pray that you have a real connection with God,
26:07 in sickness and in health. Let's pray right now for
26:12 ourselves and for each married couple that might be having
26:17 this challenge. Dear Lord, we are grateful
26:20 to know that You are a God who is there for all seasons and
26:25 all reasons. Help us as a couple to also have that same
26:33 ability that because of Your comfort of us and Your
26:36 strengthening of us that we will also be able to strengthen one
26:41 - another. - And we thank You Lord
26:44 because You are the Great Physician and You know us,
26:47 and You know every need that we have, that You can come close
26:51 and be near for each and every situation, in the lovely name
26:55 of Jesus we pray, amen.
27:01 Well, we've certainly covered a lot of different things
27:04 without a lot of detail, but we are hopeful that you are
27:08 ultimately able to dialogue about these things,
27:11 that you can communicate with one another, even before they
27:15 happen and even afterwards, that through prayer and through
27:19 being close in your most intimate moments that you'll
27:22 see that your marriage is truly in God's hands, and that you
27:27 have the support and the strengthening that you need even
27:30 as we have found. And we ask you to stay by
27:33 for the next episode of Marriage in God's Hands.
27:36 But until then, may God bless you in your communication
27:41 and in your prayer life as a couple.