Healing Your Marriage Begins With Changing Your Motives
Have your attempts to fix your marriage failed?
It's not too late to follow the biblical model that leads to lasting change.
REJECT Man's Way
We reject man’s way of change by performance-based, outward behavior modification programs.
ACCEPT God's Way
We embrace God’s way of change by renewing our minds with His truth.
CONNECT The Gospel
We walk in gospel power that transforms us from the inside out.
You’re here at The Transformed Marriage because you’re serious about finding solutions to your marriage problems.
There are many places you could go for help, and perhaps you’re here because you’ve already tried a few of those places but had no success.
We want to explain why you should spend your time here, instead of “out there” in the world where Facebook groups, 12-step methods and even so-called “Christian” counselors and psychologists promise so much, but fail to deliver.
We know their advice is inconsistent and confusing and confusion usually leads to doing nothing.
But sometimes doing the wrong things is worse than doing nothing and you can’t afford to put your marriage at even more risk.
There are many 12-step programs that claim to deal with pornography addictions. There are even a few so-called “Christian” copycat versions that are basically the same thing with a few Bible verses pasted on.
And there are hundreds of marriage counseling programs for general or specific relationship problems like pornography.
But so many of these can cause more harm than good for Christians.
Most of them are nothing more than “self-improvement” programs made by so-called “experts” who want you to think you can just follow their method of therapy, recite daily affirmations, say a few prayers and you’ll live happily ever after!
But They Are WRONG!
The problem with modern day “self-improvement” psychology is that it attempts to answer questions about humanity, while rejecting the only One who knows the answers.
The word "psychology" comes from the Greek roots:
- Psyche = mind or soul
- Logos = study of
So psychology is the practice of studying the mind/soul.
It started with the Greek philosophers that used the word “psyche” to refer to the essence of life and you see that as psychologists ask:
Psychologists then make interpretations about what it means to be “human” by observing people’s outward behaviors.
Without any scientific or definitive answers they can agree upon, they subjectively label these outward behaviors as some type of “mental illness.”
Although they are attempting to study a person’s soul, all the psychologists admit they can NOT observe the soul with its inner motives that drive outward behaviors.
Outward behaviors are only symptoms of inner thoughts and feelings that stem from people’s minds.
Psychologists admit the mind is driven by something the mind itself does not know, nor understand, and they refer to that as the “unconscious” part of a person.
This realization is the basis of most “talk” therapies. They assume a person would gain self-discovery about their unconscious self by merely talking about themselves and somehow that would lead to self-insight about their problems.
They also promote talking to yourself with self-affirmations and creating the life you want by positive speaking. Unfortunately, that still doesn’t change the inner motives, nor solve their problems.
These worldly philosophies may have good intentions, but their remedies are flawed.
God alone has the best intention for you, as well as the only effective remedy and He reveals them in the Bible!
The Bible does agree with psychologists in this way; it clearly reveals that outward behavior stems from inner motives.
For out of the heart come evil thoughts, murder, adultery,
sexual immorality, theft, false witness, slander.
The Bible is the only place that accurately and consistently defines who we are as human beings, what is wrong with us, what should be right with us, and what it would take to fix the problem.
The Bible says our problems come from sinful hearts that produce sinful behaviors and it says sinfulness is the default condition of every human ever born.
It also affirms that people actually do have souls, and explains why they do.
Human beings are made in the image of God with eternal souls.
Human beings are created to have a relationship with God and are accountable to Him.
Any view that leaves these simple truths out of the equation of what it means to be human will cause Christians to fail as they attempt to get through life without God.
Any addiction program or marriage counseling based on “behavioral” psychology is a counterfeit remedy that will cause more harm than good if people attempt outward change without dealing with sin within.
TRANSFORMATION IS A PROCESS NOT AN EVENT
Although set free from sin through faith in the gospel, we didn’t truly know how to walk in freedom.
It wasn’t until a major marriage crisis hit and set off a firestorm of problems, that we realized we also had a faith crisis.
Even as we attempted to face and resolve the problems, we continued in a cycle of failure, guilt and defeat.
Part of the problem was listening to the wrong advisors with bad advice.
But it wasn’t just the people we looked to for advice. It was also the voices inside our own heads.
We both came into marriage with baggage from the past, wrong expectations and wrong ways of handling conflicts.
It took time to recognize why we felt like failures in life and marriage.
A lifetime of the world’s wisdom had influenced our thinking. Which led to our sinful habits of self-effort trying to make us better, but actually interfered with resolving our problems.
After hundreds of hours of Bible study and counselor training, we began to comprehend God’s wisdom. As we grew in our understanding of His love and grace, our gratitude grew.
From a heart of gratitude, grace enabled us to walk in obedience to His word.
It wasn’t easy because it required child-like faith and humility. At times, it was a moment by moment battle to trust God’s wisdom instead of our own, and sometimes we wavered.
But when we humbled ourselves before the Lord, He empowered us, and as we became doers of the word, He transformed us and our marriage!
The Transformed Marriage Affirms 3 Things
REJECT Man's Ways
Self-help programs are performance-based programs that attempt to modify outward behaviors. But even if you successfully stop doing certain things, that does not change the human condition inside.
That’s like putting a band-aid on a paper cut, while ignoring the cancer eating away at your internal organs. You might feel better about yourself because you can't see the damage, but your insides continue to rot away.
Performance is not the same as transformation because it is based on changing something from the outside in, and that’s not how humans work. Even psychologists admit that is a flaw in their remedy.
If you can’t change inner motives because of sin, you might see performance outcomes but you can not experience transformative outcomes.
Self-Help = Perform But Not Transform
ACCEPT God's Ways
In order for a person to be truly transformed, their inner motives have to change.
Only God can see and change the heart, the inner source of all motives.
For the word of God is living and active, sharper than any two-edged sword,
piercing to the division of soul and of spirit, of joints and of marrow,
and discerning the thoughts and intentions of the heart.
Scripture can diagnose motives, and prescribe actions that lead to genuine change.
It starts by providing a solution for the problem of sin.
Humans are broken and can be healed, but only by God. The gospel reveals the way humans can be forgiven of their sin and receive power to overcome sin.
It also provides wisdom for the confused, peace for the anxious, courage for the fearful, strength for the weak and hope for the discouraged.
Here’s the bottom line:
Bad motives lead to bad behaviors that lead to bad consequences.
But here’s the good news:
The Bible not only accurately interprets inner motives, it also accurately defines how to deal with them.
Your word is a lamp to my feet and a light to my path.
As a Christian renews his mind with God’s Word, he is changed from the inside out!
Do not conform to the pattern of this world,
but be transformed by the renewing of your mind.
As the Christian’s motives start aligning with God’s, he is genuinely transformed and being conformed to the image of Christ.
But we all, with unveiled face, beholding as in a mirror the glory of the Lord,
are being transformed into the same image from glory to glory,
just as from the Lord, the Spirit.
2 Corinthians 3:18
Because God’s intention is the best possible future for His children, He will use their past and present problems as a means of genuine transformation.
And we know that all things work together for good to those who love God,
to those who are the called according to His purpose.
For whom He foreknew, He also predestined to be
conformed to the image of His Son.
God will do so much more than just “improve” you or your marriage.
God will change your motives by changing your heart!
Authentic Change = Transform To Conform
CONNECT The Gospel
The gospel is the good news that God redeems people from their sin.
They don’t earn it by behaving a certain way -- they accept it as a gift of grace.
The gospel is the means God uses to bring people into a right relationship with Him and then He calls His children to walk according to the same principles of the gospel.
But God, who is rich in mercy, because of His great love with which He loved us, even when we were dead in trespasses, made us alive together with Christ (by grace you have been saved),
and raised us up together, and made us sit together in the heavenly places in Christ Jesus,
that in the ages to come He might show the exceeding riches of
His grace in His kindness toward us in Christ Jesus.
For by grace you have been saved through faith, and that not of yourselves;
it is the gift of God, not of works,
lest anyone should boast.
For we are His workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works,
which God prepared beforehand
that we should walk in them.
The gospel is love, mercy, forgiveness and reconciliation. That’s what “gospel-centered” living is all about.
God's grace is the means by which our motives are transformed, and it flows out into our behavior.
The gospel tells us that sin is the reason we need a Savior.
That means we don’t minimize or excuse the wrongs others have done against us, nor suggest that we should just forgive and forget.
Instead, we show you how the gospel empowers you to move beyond the broken relationships and events of your past and not accept responsibility for other people’s sins.
We teach you how to look deeper than your own outward behavior and identify your inner motives that set off the triggers that lead to sinful responses.
All of us build up habits of response throughout our lives, but the gospel helps us break the bad habits and replace them with good ones.
That is how to apply a gospel-centered blueprint to your marriage so you can walk according to God’s wisdom and live in a way that glorifies Him!
The gospel of Christ is the power of God to salvation for everyone who believes and has past, present and future effects!
Gospel Way Of Change = The Platform
What's The Difference?
At The Transformed Marriage, our approach for dealing with relationship problems is grounded in the biblical fact that the motives of the heart drive behaviors.
Here’s a brief summary of some of the ways we differ from most addiction and marriage counselors:
We reject the world’s deceptive philosophies that attempt to fix problems it can’t even define.
- They keep you focused on the past.
- They force you to focus on your "self."
- They push a problem-based identity on you.
- They portray you as the victim.
- They blame your behaviors on the people and problems of your past.
- They get you to believe you are needy, that you need to forgive yourself, that you need self-acceptance, more self-esteem, security and significance.
- They convince you that you always need "more" of something, which really means you'll never have all you need to be healed.
- They keep you "talking" about your problems.
- Because your “self” is so needy, they enroll you in their “self-improvement” programs which lead to showing you even more needs that your “self” has and then sell you more programs for them.
- They work to reform you but broken people cannot fix broken people.
We lead you to the truth that says you don’t need a self-improvement program, you need a Savior!
- We help you focus on the future.
- We put your focus on Jesus and show you the person you are becoming because you are in Him and where you are going because of His finished work on the cross on your behalf.
- We remind you of your identity as a child of God.
- The Bible portrays you as a conqueror!
- We help you identify your wrong motives that lead to wrong behaviors and equip you to take responsibility for them in the right ways.
- We remind you to keep believing the gospel so you can rejoice in the forgiveness of your sins, overcome your past, resist the temptations of the present, and point to the glory you’ll experience through all eternity as a co-heir with Christ.
- The Bible says you are complete! As a Christian, you already have everything you need for life and godliness!
- We get you "taking action" to resolve your problems.
- We equip you to develop skills that employ biblical principles for change as you embrace life challenges as gospel opportunities. We encourage you with prayer and guidance to walk in the wisdom and power of the gospel. We help you assess your personal obstacles and progress and celebrate with you as God transforms you!
- God will transform you by the work of His perfect Son.
We Don't Do Therapy - We Do Discipleship
At The Transformed Marriage, our goal is to strengthen you during this difficult season of life
and help you mature in your faith so you can go on to disciple others!
As a result, we are no longer to be children, tossed here and there by waves and carried about by every wind of doctrine, by the trickery of men, by craftiness in deceitful scheming; but speaking the truth in love, we are to grow up in all aspects into Him who is the head, even Christ, from whom the whole body, being fitted and held together by what every joint supplies, according to the proper working of each individual part, causes the growth of the body for the building up of itself in love.
Reject + Accept + Connect = TRANSFORMATION
THE 3 PRINCIPLES OF AUTHENTIC TRANSFORMATION:
REJECT MAN’S WAY: We reject man’s way of change by performance based, outward behavior modification programs.
ACCEPT GOD’S WAY: We embrace God’s way of change by renewing our minds with His truth.
CONNECT THE GOSPEL: We walk daily in gospel power that transforms us from the inside out and makes us like Jesus.
This is what we believe is the biblical and only effective way to experience genuine transformation
If you agree and want to learn more, you're in the right place.