July 9, 2023

The Pains and Gains of Marital Relationships

The Pains and Gains of Marital Relationships

TRINITY HOUSEHOLD OF FAITH

 

SUNDAY SERMON

9th of July, 2023

Topic:                         The Pains and Gains of Marital Relationships

Preacher:                   Reverend Isaac Adalumo

Text:                           Malachi 4:5 – 6

 

MESSAGE

Looking back now, I remember that I was still a very young child who didn’t know anything, other than to go to church with my dad, when I started preaching on marriage and relationship to people who can give birth to me. One day, a Christmas, people came back to the village and by then, I have never left the village; we, the children, went out to the marketplace to watch people enjoying Christmas and dancing to music and as a young child, I noticed that all fathers, instead of dancing with their wives started dancing with secondary school girls in that open place. It made me annoyed and I said in my heart that when I grow old and get married, I will dance with my wife. By the time I got to secondary school, the Pastor of our church started giving me opportunity to preach. One day, I preached on marriage and relationship. When we finished, some of the elders came to me and said, “Son, all that you are saying, we know it is true but the only thing is that you don’t know these things because you are not married.” So, I waited till I got married before I began to say things I was pregnant of, even in that generation. After I married and now that I am getting older, when we preach in some places, the younger generation says, ‘You are old school’. If you think so also, remember that the Bible is not old school, it is new every morning.

Malachi 4:5 – 6 says, ‘Behold, I will send you Elijah the prophet before the coming of the great and dreadful day of the Lord. And he will turn the hearts of the fathers to the children, and the hearts of the children to their fathers, lest I come and strike the earth with a curse.’ The Lord says, if this does not happen, I will come and smite the world (earth) with a curse. The last word that ends the Old Testament is ‘curse’. I pray for you as I pray for myself, ‘Every curse that has been hindering your progress, written or unwritten, known or unknown, that has bastardised your relationship is repelled and crucified in the name of Jesus. Your life and your family shall be blessed. You have already been blessed, you will be more blessed. As a member of THF, you shall be blessed in the mighty name of Jesus. Amen.’

The Pains and Gains of Marital Relationship

I know, as I myself have experienced and have seen in many others, including many General Overseers… by our position, we are privy to be close to so many General Overseers and many times, they have opened themselves unto us for counselling and spiritual guidance. Sometimes ago, a senior general overseer both in age and ministry, who is very close to us, invited us to their house and opened up to us. We went there in the evening, thinking we would just chat as usual and go back home but from the evening that day till the next morning, we were not able to solve the conflict between the G.O. and the mummy of the house. However, God helped me that day and I will never forget. It came to a time when I said to my senior minister, ‘Sir, it looks like our temperament is taking the better part of us.’ When I said that, that was the end of the matter. I pray, ‘Father, in the name of Jesus, every unresolved conflict and crises in the families that are here right now, by your sovereignty, dissolve them in the name of Jesus. No matter how hard the hearts of the individual may be, by the power of the Holy Ghost, convict the heart and bring them down to see your word in Jesus Name. Amen.’

No pain, no gain. No sweat no sweet. Like somebody would say, ‘Marriage is something you must work at.’ Anything left on its own will never prosper. A child left on its own will never do well. A husband left on his own will never do well. A wife left altogether to herself will roam about the bush. All that I am saying here is centered on the Scripture. No sweat, no sweet. No cross, no crown. In every marriage, there is always trouble in the flesh according to the words of Apostle Paul. Today alone is not enough to talk about ‘trouble in the flesh’, just believe it and know it. Whatever you are going through is common to every child of God, common to every marriage, how to handle it is what we need.

Godliness with contentment is a great gain. The pains and the gains of marriage, this statement settles it all: Godliness. Everything outside that will always be pain. If you are not packaging yourself to become godly and you only come to church, hear the word and don’t practise it, you are at fault. Only doers of the word will be blessed. Not even preachers will be blessed, not to talk of hearers. You want to be blessed? Practise what you read in the Bible. It may not be easy, it will never be easy for the flesh but through the Spirit of God, you can generate spiritual power to do what the Word of God says.

These are some general principles for you to take note of:

If you succeed in everything but fail in your marriage, you will never be a happy person. The fulfilling of your ministry in marriage is not dependent on whether or not your partner is fulfilling it. You don’t owe it to him or her, you owe it to God. Don’t deceive yourself! Get all the money, fame and friends that you can, if you fail in your relationship, you will never be happy. For those not yet married, hear me out, if you fail in your marriage, say you jump into a relationship, you are setting yourself up to not be happy. In the book, Martin Luther has a Wife, Martin Luther has a wife and so did John Wesley. When you read that book, you will discover that just like Daddy mentioned some people in the Bible who fail in their relationship, similar things happen to well-known ministers. In that book, it is said that John Wesley’s wife was the greatest opposition to him. His wife would accuse, oppose and resist him and the man would always, almost all the time, allow her to do anything, to an extent that this woman would take Wesley’s long hair and use it to pull him all around. The only thing John Wesley could do was to run away from the house, and it was in a time of horses. So, he went from one village to another to preach the gospel and whatever he had, he sent back home. God forbid that anybody here should be such a wife in Jesus Name.

Do you know that marriage can be the most wonderful relationship of men and women on earth and that is the way God wants it to be? In the Yoruba area of Nigeria, we are used to doing something and maybe we can find some here who call their son, Oko mi; you are only calling another person’s husband your own. He’s your son but somebody’s husband. We have a baby daughter, the last born of the house and one day, my wife said to me, ‘When this girl will get married, I will be laughing and you will be weeping’.

Let me take that opportunity to say something because God wants to break yokes here and right now. I was in the University when God opened my eyes, as I was beholding His own face too and I discovered that my father never saw any of his children get married. The first born didn’t get married before my father died. In fact, the day he died was the day the lastborn was born. The first born of my father also died before any of his siblings got wedded. The senior brother left also died before any of his own children got married. I discovered this thing was happening and along the line, God opened my eyes and that was when I received the Holy Spirit afresh in Ibadan. So, I started praying for myself and my family, ‘Lord, this cannot continue, it is a family’s familiar spirit.’ You know, there are demons that behave as if they are members of your extended family, they will say they know your great-grandfathers and want to have dominion over you and your marriage also. That evil power jumped over my immediate junior brother. My direct junior brother died of kidney disease. Unfortunately, the wife hid the illness from the family. Hear me, when the devil wants to devastate a man’s life, he will make him stray away from the shield God has set over him. If you get angry and say you won’t come to this church again, it could be that the devil knows he can do nothing to you as long as you are in the church, so he provokes you to leave the church so as to destroy your life. Watch out! Then, I told my wife, we are no longer going to bear our former name again and changed to Adalumo. We gave birth to our children according to the will of God and my own firstborn got married even before my direct senior brother who already gave birth to a baby girl got wedded. He never had any intention of getting married. In fact, the mother of his daughter died without getting married. Today, my second-born and third-born are already married. I want you to also have the kind of faith that change situations; problems and struggles must end in your own generation.

Prayer: I pray for these people, Satan, get out of their families. Get out of their homes. Satan, we bind you. Principalities, we bind you. Dominions, we bind you. Family’s familiar spirits, we send you out. Every anomalies, we correct them. Amen. It will no longer be business as usual, it’s going to be business unusual. The power of God rests upon you. Thank you Holy Father, in Jesus Mighty Name we pray.

There is no human relationship on earth that is fraught with several impossibilities and failure like that of marriage. I am talking about the pains and also the gains of marriage. How does it happen? Have you ever seen any man or woman who looks at their enemy and say they will marry him or her? It never happens. You see somebody who has things you like, characters you like, it could be the hardwork, the leadership style and somehow, your chemistry comes together, both of you court for some time and finally decide to go the altar. How come the breakup, then, especially now in this generation? We have seen people who divorce at the reception ground; they just wedded, went for reception and that was the end of the marriage. Some, just a week. Some, two weeks. Some, months. I was asked this morning how possible it is that people who live together for 50 years still decide to divorce. What else do they want? What are they looking for? You live for a person for 30, 40 or 50 years and suddenly say, ‘Enough is enough?’ That is not the will of God, something else is happening.

Prayer: All misunderstandings between you and your wife and you don’t even know that you are being incensed against one another, the fire that is above all fires swallows that fire in Jesus Name. You are healed. Your family and relationship is healed. Between you and your wife, only love will begin to triumph. Thank you heavenly father.

When you have victory in the Spirit, the things that were normal will become abnormal. Things you were not used to in the spirit, you will start getting used to them. The man or woman you hated, you will begin to love. The Lord will help you; the evil things that are trending will cease for you, because God says, ‘I will build my church and the gate of hell shall not prevail.’ For the gate of hell not to prevail over the church, the gate of hell must not prevail over families and marriages. Who knows whether what you are looking for is hidden in this church? Don’t leave the church.

Let me quickly touch on the things that cause pain and how we can ameliorate that. I am going to mention ten top things because if you know the road to where you are going, the problem is half-solved.

  1. Over-commitment and Fatigue or Stress: When you are so over committed and have no time for your husband, wife or children and sometimes, you take the children to somebody else, you cannot run away from the result of it. It is painful; if not now, the pain will come later.
  2. Excessive Credit and Conflict over Money Matters: If you are being discontented because you want to be like Family A, B or C; want to do what they are doing, not knowing where they are coming from, you are inviting disaster. Be content with what God has given you, it’s a privilege to serve God. When you want to get rich quickly, you cannot be innocent. Beware the type of credit that you take because if care is not taken, it will overwhelm the two of you. It will stress the two of you and you won’t be able to respect one another again.

I and my wife used to teach, preach and believe in that thing called ‘common purse’ but later realise that it belongs to very mature people in the Lord. I searched the scripture but I couldn’t find it. That does not mean it is not good, but with the many experiences I have about it, I stopped. It causes fight between couples. People who cannot bathe together will fight in the bathroom. People who cannot eat in the same pot will fight over meat.

Early in marriage, I and my wife also fought over meat. We are one truly but I didn’t know we have two stomachs. She calls me ‘lord’ and I call her ‘honey’. This day, it was during the period of gberefu, that is, close to the end of the month when the whole salary has been spent. (Whatever you do, especially in this Nigeria, get more streams of income, otherwise, it will be hard.) My wife cooked and poured all the soups including the only three meats left into the pot. So, we started eating. My wife eats like a cat and I eat like a pig, so imagine both of us eating from a bowl; it is not new, though, it is how you handle it. I thought the way I was eating meat was the way she was eating meat. I took a meat when we started eating, when the food remained half, I saw two meats and took one also. When the food is about to finish, I took the last meat and before it reached my mouth, my wife held my hand. I thought it was a joke but when I looked at her face, I saw raindrops. I asked her what was the problem and she said, ‘That’s what you always do.’ Me? What is it that I always do. I didn’t understand. She said, ‘You are not even considerate.’ I said, ‘How?’ Then, she said there were only three meats in the soup and that was the last one. Previously, when we ate together and I was quick to finish the food, she would go back to the kitchen, cook another one and still asked me if I would eat again but who would reject another food?

When she said that, my eyes were opened and I patted her. So, I made up my mind from that day that she must eat before I eat. Since that day, when she prepares food for both of us, I would look at the food and use my eyes to draw an imaginary line across it. When I have eaten half of it, I would wash my hands and leave the table and when she says let’s continue, I would say I was filled, but when she had eaten and could not finish the rest, then I would collect it. You cannot beat a woman in the game of love. Love her and see what will happen. Women are made for that. It is when there is no flow of fairness and justice, lovely correction and romance that there are problems. So, what happened after that? When we were eating again, apart from the imaginary line, I would push the best meat to her side. Before I know what has happened, that same meat will come to my side. We did that over and over again till she began to put it in my mouth, would it come back?

Prayer: Isaac means laughter. May laughter and joy enter your family. Because Jesus said unto Zacchaeus, ‘Today, salvation enters your house,’ today, receive joy, laughter and happiness in your family. Amen

  1. Interferences from In-Laws: Some people, the greatest problem in their marriage is nothing but their in-laws. God so much helped us that we conquered that in our family. You want to ask how we conquered it? Early in marriage, while eating together, I said to my wife, ‘Honey, it just dropped in my heart. You have lived with your mother…’ because her father died a long time, and so was mine, ‘…even if you quarrel with your mother, the two of you can settle it but if I quarrel with your mother, that is a great problem and that’s the same thing for you also. So, this is what we are going to do…’ and we did it. ‘You, go and befriend my mother and I will befriend your mother.’ My mother died a long time ago but she remembers my mother more than I do today. While she was still alive, when I see my wife and mother making tete-a-tete, I get afraid of them. They will laugh and joke like age mates and I saw the results. She would tell me to promise her that I would do something and when I ask her what, she would ask me to do something for my own mother, not even once did she ask something for her own mother. I befriended her mother also and we conquered problems from in-laws.

Prayer: If you are at loggerhead with any of the family member of your spouse, you are losing so much you don’t know. For you to leave the region of pain to much gain, I pray the Lord make you a bridge maker to your relations. You will not falter. No beast will be able to carry you down. No cow will be able to cow you down. As you do this, you will receive heavenly blessings. You will do good and well and last forever.

  1. Space abuse and Space mismanagement. Domination in the family.
  2. Spiritual Immaturity
  3. Business Success. When some people succeed, that’s when problem starts at home. Even children of God, when they succeed that’s when they ‘carry girls.’
  4. Business Failure. When money is no longer coming as before, some women pack out.
  5. Unequal yoke, e.g. blood incompatibility.
  6. Unfaithfulness. Spiritual psychosis.
  7. Family’s familiar spirits.

Let me conclude with this: I and my wife discuss on many issues and sometimes ago, we discussed who should die first and were laughing over it. I said to my wife, prepare to go first because if I go before you go, you cannot last. Because, the way I see her, she would just kill yourself after I die. Till date, the only thing that will make me see my wife’s red eyes is when I overstress myself. One day, my wife kidnapped me. It was not a joke. She has warned me a lot, that she does not like how anybody can look for me at anytime and I will have time for them. Yet, it’s just that I don’t get settled when I see anybody having problems until I could do something. So, one day, she took a room in UMCA for me and asked that we go there together. She asked me to stay there only for three days, locked the door and took away the key. Whether I liked it or not, I stayed there. She would bring my food, leave it there and lock the door again.

What can you do for your husband also? Can you go the extra mile? What are the needs of your wife? The needs of women are very many and uncountable. What can you do for your wife? See your wife as if she is one of your babies. Rub her back, hold her hands, kiss her, pet her… things that men don’t like to do mean so much to them. Do it and see as she will fall for you. It is doers that are blessed; you have heard a lot in this church, if you are a doer of them, you will not fall into trouble. Do something for your wife! Take her out, take her to a hotel, buy her something, no matter how small. Treat her the way you always did before you married her and see how she will fall for you. Respect your husband, whether he is good or bad. Pray to God to help you respect your husband. Don’t speak to him harshly, that’s not respect. Don’t throw his meal to him on the table, that’s not respect. Don’t make the house hot for him, he will go elsewhere and you will turn him to other places.

Prayer

My father and my God, I commission your people into your own hands. I do not trust any of us to be able to do it by ourselves but if you will help us, everything is possible. Help us and let your will be done. In Jesus Mighty Name we prayed.

Call to Salvation

Trusting in Jesus and making Him the basis of your marriage is the only way to have a stable marriage. Are you saved yet? Have you received the Lordship of Jesus? If you haven’t, say this prayer: Lord Jesus, I surrender to your Lordship. Today, I receive you as my Lord and Saviour. Please, wash me clean and let your redemption promises be evident in my life. Thank you for saving me. In Jesus Name I prayed. Amen.

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