He Said, She Said...The Marriage Forum

August 2018

Hoping that everyone is having a great summer and pursuing opportunities to “play” together.  A lot of our (Patty and Doug) playtime has been affected by Patty’s back surgery on June 20th.  We’re very grateful that she has made fantastic progress (the “star” patient of her neurosurgeon). Looking forward to the fall, I (Doug) continue to look at ways to protect marriages from moral failure and collapse both in the Fellowship and in my medical practice.  We are sure that all of us can relate to the failure of marriages of close friends and family and the devastation that is left in their wake. I am, again, drawn toward truths from the Scriptures concerning marriage. One of my favorite verses on marriage is Song of Solomon 8:6-7. In the Good News Bible it is translated as follows:  

Close your heart to every love but mine; hold no one in your arms but me.
Love is as powerful as death; passion is as strong as death itself.
It bursts into flame and burns like a raging fire.
Water cannot put it out; no flood can drown it.
But if any tried to buy love with their wealth, contempt is all they would get.

In this passage, the Shulamite (Solomon’s wife) describes her love for Solomon as a fire.  Dr. Joseph Dillow, in a book he co-authored with his wife and Peter and Lorraine Pintus, Intimacy Ignited, describes this word “fire” in the Hebrew as having two components. These components are “erotic passion” and “companionship”.  In almost all marriages that fail, there is an absence of one or both of these qualities in the relationship. Therefore, for our Fall Marriage Initiative, we are going to do a 6-week session on “The Fiery Marriage”.  We are going to be exploring topics such as:

  • How do both spouses contribute to a fiery or thrilling (Psalms 92:4) marriage? 
  • What effect does a fiery marriage have on the kids?
  • What are the “specific” behaviors on the part of each spouse that contribute to the “fiery marriage”? 
  • How does being in a transparent, accountable marriage community help promote a “fiery marriage”? 
  • What are the “firehoses” in life that seek to extinguish a fiery marriage?  

Over the years, Marriage Initiative has been a great vehicle to introduce non-churched couples to The Fellowship. It would be a great opportunity to ask a neighboring couple or friends to “come with us”. Many years ago, I heard a sermon on Matthew 28:19-20 in which the speaker explained that Jesus was encouraging his followers to “As you are going, make disciples”. That is, as we seek to enrich our own lives in terms of building a marriage that is a model of Christ and the Church, we invite others to come with us. We plan to start on September 9th at 9 am in Room 2 in the lower level.  For un-churched couples, they can enter through the back door in a non-threatening way. I hope to see you join us!

Doug and Patty Grogan

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