Session 5 - Finances, In-Laws, and Sex

Bible Reference: I Timothy 6:6-19; Hebrews 13:4-6; and Proverbs 16-19

Far more often we define and frame our lives by being wise and considerate in the countless daily, dare we even say routine, items of life.

Being wise with the details matters, because that is where our life is. This session on finances, in-laws, sex, and children tries to communicate that the daily decisions you make on these issues will determine the quality of your marriage. In general, each of these areas presents daily opportunities to grab for personal power or opportunities to share it. They present opportunities to “protect myself” or to “protect our marriage,” opportunities to be self-centered or mate-centered, opportunities to steal trust or to build it. The following is a very brief start to very important issues.

Being wise with finances

  • It is OUR money. Anything that emphasizes my personal ownership robs our marriage of unity.
  • Deal with finances together. You can either have a husband/ wife relationship or a parent/child relationship. The difference starts here.
  • Work from a written budget, which provides a framework for shared decision making and helps avoid unintentional offenses.
  • Avoid irresponsible surprises. The temptation is to buy our way out of emotional difficulties.
  • Avoid debt. While there is “good debt,” bad debt will enslave your future.
  • Be generous. Life is a lot more fun, and it is sure closer to the heart of God.

Being wise with in-laws

  • Be fair. When one side is valued more than the other, nothing good comes from it.
  • Live balanced. Love your family, spend time with them, but have your own family.
  • Always speak well of your mate. Help your family think well of your mate.
  • Bloodlines speak if hard things must be spoken. It is heard better and forgiveness comes easier!

Being wise with sex

  • Acknowledge that you are and will be “wired” in very different ways from one another. Can you unselfishly love and meet needs that are different from yours?
  • Satisfying sex primarily meets emotional needs. Sex is less about a physical drive and more about an emotional one.
  • Tenderness and gentleness will still define passionate love. Our pornographic society has painted a false and artificial picture. From its influence, sex has primarily become a solo act that simply uses someone else to “satisfy” us. No wonder we stay so emotionally unsatisfied!
  • Something wonderful and mysterious does occur. You may share many things: mailboxes, closets, etc., but somehow it is in giving yourselves sexually to one another that unity of life is created.

Being wise about children

While there was far too little time to do more than to briefly introduce the subject of children, the following observations were made.

  • Children add to the depth of love in a family. They are a blessing.
  • There is enough love for several children. There may be reasons for a small family, but not having enough love is not one of them.
  • Give yourselves some time, but don’t think everything must be perfect before you have children. Don’t let money or careers be your master on when to have children.
  • Watch and discuss how others parent. The two of you must parent with the same philosophy; establish that philosophy by watching great parents. Know your philosophy before you have children.