The Wholehearted Marriage (Focus On The Family Marriage Series)
Discussion Group QuestionsWhat areas of your life (work, kids, marriage, hobbies, relationship with God) are you most wholehearted? Which areas do not come as naturally? What stops you from living wholeheartedly?Were you raised in a home where your parents or...
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Discussion Group QuestionsWhat areas of your life (work, kids, marriage, hobbies, relationship with God) are you most wholehearted? Which areas do not come as naturally? What stops you from living wholeheartedly?Were you raised in a home where your parents or significant role models taught you how important your heart is in life and in relationships? Why do you thinkpeople don't talk about the importance of our heart?What messages are young boys taught about manhood and emotions? What messages are young girls taught about womanhood and emotions? How might these two different ways of handling emotions impact a marriage?Read through 1 John 4:7-21. Where does love come from? Do you agree that the love we feel towards our spouse is not generated by us but comes from God?Where is your heart in your marriage at this time? Is it shut down completely? Is it fully open?To better understand your ability to be aware of your emotions, answer the following questions: Do I pay a lot of attention to how I feel? Do I notice my emotions as I experience them? What emotions do I frequently experience? What emotions are easy for me to express? What emotions are difficult for me to express? What emotions did I see expressed in my family growing up? What emotions were never expressed in my family growing up? Can I accurately name my feelings? Do I pay attention to my thoughts, beliefs and actions that could be causing how I feel? Do I understand how my feelings influence my thoughts and actions? Am I aware of how my emotions impact my spouse?How do you typically manage painful or troublesome emotions from your spouse? Do you... Remain emotionally unaware or disconnect from their heart? Judge, criticize or disapprove of their emotions? Stuff, ignore, overlook or disregard their feelings? Minimize, rationalize or discount their emotions? Completely trust their feelings or believe they are true fact? Follow their emotions blindly, mindlessly act on them, or impulsively being led by them? Recklessly spew or spray your feelings in response to them?Think back over any signifi cantmoments that you can recall from your childhood (traumatic events, disappointments, times you were hurt). What were you feeling? What did you say to yourself or what message did you receive fromthe incident -- what were the lies written on your heart? In what ways have you replaced those lies, messages, and fears with God's truth? Where are you in the process of getting healing?In order for intimacy and deep connection to occur, hearts must be open. And your heart will only open when you feel emotionally safe. Answer these questions: What specific things do you do on a regular basis to nurture and care for your heart? Do you mostly feel open and emotionally available in your marriage or do you feel guarded and distant? How safe do you feel with your spouse? Can you trust your spouse with the deepest parts of your heart? 0-10 (with ten being the most safe), how safe is your marriage for you and your spouse? How do you react when you feel unsafe? What does your spouse do that helps you feel safe in your marriage? How have you made it unsafe for your spouse? How do you damage the safety of your marital environment?What does a typical day in your life look like? How much spare time, leisure time and down time do you have every day? To what extent do you feel worn out, tired, exhausted and depleted? What is the high cost you and your marriage are paying for a fast paced lifestyle? In what ways can you slow down and simplify your life?How effective are you at opening your heart to be impacted by what your spouse is feeling? What keeps you from e
"The Wholehearted Marriage "offers practical tools for helping couples keep a passionate connection with one another and understand the role their hearts play in their lives. Drs. Smalley and Stoever maintain that circumstances, such as busy lifestyles, differences between spouses, personal baggage, the loss of a loved one, childhood trauma, etc., trigger reactions that condition us to close up our hearts for protection, blocking the flow of love. A disengaged, protected heart makes it impossible to experience an intimate, connected marriage. As a result, couples drift apart, trying to find some version of contentment, or they give up altogether and look for love somewhere else. ^Through their experiences in marriage counseling, Drs. Smalley and Stoever discovered that the commonly heard phrase "I don't love him/her anymore" is merely a camouflaged misunderstanding about what true love is and God's design for it. They affirm that love is more than just a feeling, and that to have tr
Gary Smalley, one of the foremost experts on family relationships, has written or co-written 28 best-selling, award winning books selling over six millions copies, as well as several popular films and videos, based on more than 30 years of experience as a teacher, counsellor and speaker. The Blessing and The Two Sides of Love have won Gold Medallions, The Language of Love won the Angel Award as the best contribution to family life and all other titles have been top-five finalists for the Gold Medallion Award. His latest book is the DNA of Relationships. Gary and his wife, Norma, have been married for over thirty years.
Dr. Shawn Stoever currently serves as a senior director for the WinShape Foundation (a nonprofit ministry of Chick-fil-A), overseeing Marriage, Retreat, and Experiential Learning ministries. Prior to his role at WinShape, he served as the director of training for the Smalley Relationship Center in Branson , Missouri . Whether he's leading retreats, writing, or appearing on television and radio broadcasts, Shawn's humor, enthusiasm, and wisdom help him connect with his audience. Despite extensive schooling, Shawn says he really did not know anything about relationships until he met his wife Christina. They have four wonderful children: Taylor, Cade, Avery (with the Lord), and Cody.