“In order that Satan might not outwit us.”        2Co 2:11 NIV

Recognize who the real enemy of your marriage is. On those days when you think, “I can’t spend another moment in this relationship,” it’s easy to lose perspective and focus on the wrong things. Marriage was God’s idea. He planned it as the foundation of His earthly kingdom. That makes marriage one of Satan’s prime targets. It’s why he poisoned the perspective and confused the thinking of the first couple. He deceived Adam into believing that Eve was his problem, blaming the fiasco on her (See Ge 3:12). But both of them were deceived by “the father of lies” (Jn 8:44 NLT). Satan knew he could undermine God’s plan by driving a wedge between the first couple, creating antagonism, blame, and self-interest. And his methods haven’t changed. It’s why we “keep tabs” on each other’s shortcomings, identifying our mate as the problem and refusing to show grace. Paul helps us understand how to overcome Satan’s strategy. “I have forgiven in the sight of Christ…in order that Satan might not outwit us…we are not unaware of his schemes” (2Co 2:10-11 NIV). Then he counsels us further by saying that “love…doesn’t keep score of the sins of others” (1Co 13:4-5 TM). That doesn’t mean love lives in denial, but that it chooses to practice self-denial! So rather than keeping score of your spouse’s worst qualities, choose to look for their best ones and show your appreciation. Nothing melts resentment and hardness like expressing appreciation for each other.