Beauty in Battle Podcast

Seven Traits of a Strong Marriage

January 10, 2023 Jason Benham, Tori Benham Episode 52
Seven Traits of a Strong Marriage
Beauty in Battle Podcast
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Beauty in Battle Podcast
Seven Traits of a Strong Marriage
Jan 10, 2023 Episode 52
Jason Benham, Tori Benham

You want a strong marriage, right?  Well, the book of Philippians has some timely advice on how to make that happen. 

In this episode, we're going to dive into seven characteristics from Paul's letter to the Philippians and how his way of relating to them is a great example for us to relate to our spouse. 

Even though the dude wasn't married, what we can learn from the way he writes to this church will help our relationships immensely! 


Show Notes Transcript

You want a strong marriage, right?  Well, the book of Philippians has some timely advice on how to make that happen. 

In this episode, we're going to dive into seven characteristics from Paul's letter to the Philippians and how his way of relating to them is a great example for us to relate to our spouse. 

Even though the dude wasn't married, what we can learn from the way he writes to this church will help our relationships immensely! 


So today we're talking about, uh, seven traits of a strong marriage, and we're specifically pulling it out of the book of Philipp. And I, and I love doing this because as, uh, we read through the scripture every single year, um, just about everybody who's listening to this podcast has some type of relationship with God, and you understand the value of getting into the Bible on a consistent basis, whether you're reading through the New Testament or the whole Bible, or whether you're just reading a book, whatever it is, it's good to be in the scriptures.

And so sometimes the Lord points things out. That are so good and they're so powerful for a relationship that I can't help but to write it down and wanna share it with you. So Philippians won. I'm excited to hear . I think I'm just gonna let you take over a tour. Teach me . Hey, let's start with a song. Yes.

So I'll let you pick, I'll let you pick this one out this week cuz you said you wanted to do one, so go ahead. Yeah, I was sitting here. Let me do teaser. Okay, so it's called Beautiful Crazy by Luke Comb. and I love it because it's country. Yes. And I love some good slow country. I think that's the, we're in our country phase of life.

Yes. . And it's the simple life. Yeah. There's definitely, prison is over. Yeah. Countries in country is in. But there's just something about country music that. Really represents the simple life that I think is just awesome, especially when you're all go, go, go all the time, you know, in your mind. And I think for you and, and me, we listened to so much country music when we were dating.

Yeah. And so, you know, when the Lord gave you that dream and told you to, you know, showed you through revelations. Yeah. Um, the three Rs. Yeah. Remember, repent, redo, remember, was such a big part of the Lord bringing our relationship. To a new level. Yeah. And so we always go back to the same songs that we listen to.

And then of course, just listening to country music. Yeah. We pick up some new ones. You should listen to country music if you're not, you know, listener person. You listen to some country music. Uh, before I do the song though, you, you said the word remember that totally just makes me think about Tori. And I just got back from California where we did a marriage retreat.

There we were in Forest Falls, California. . It was beautiful. The mountain, it was in the mountains of California. It was in the San Bernardino Forest. It was really interesting. It was cool. Yeah. But we talked about It's a lot of snow. Yeah. But we talked about, remember, and how remembering is all about connecting.

Mm-hmm. that my, my, if you hold up your hand and you look at your fingers, each one of your fingers is associated with your hand. It's connected to your hand. And if one of those fingers gets dismembered, then you need to remember. You gotta go get surgery done and, and reconnect it to your, to your hand.

And so I was talking about the value of remembering. Remembering is all about connection, right? So when you remember the things that you used to think and feel and do with your spouse before you guys ever got married, when the emotions were high mm-hmm. , and you remember back to those times and you remember enough, you know, with fondness, the Lord really does connect you to your spouse.

So for me, country music is huge. And so it is, it is for Tori too. This song, although it wasn't around when Tory and I were dating, it is a great country song and you should definitely pull it up on Apple or Google or whatever and dance with your spouse to this. Here's beautiful crazy Luke Combs. I'm just gonna pray.

Play the, uh, pray . Papa's gonna pray about it. I'm gonna pray over it right now. Yeah, I'm just gonna play a little bit. Here we go. Beautiful. Crazy.

Amaze me the way the she dancers ain't afraid to take chances and wears her hard. Yes, she's crazy. Butter crazy is beautiful. Don't you love that voice? I do. I love him. So is is my crazy beautiful to you? . You're crazy. Tori is so wacky. , but it's beautiful . Yeah, I can see how that can, that one could backfire.

I've seen so many men, they're like trying to compliment their wives and they say something, they're like, wait. You just said, I look really good. Does that mean I didn't look good yesterday? ? He's like, well what, what? It's so funny. Wait a second. I won't overthink it. Okay. Don't overthink it. Your beautiful is crazy to me.

Whatever. You're crazy is beautiful to me. , I just screwed it all up. Okay. Can we jump in to this? Yeah, let's jump in. Okay. Philippians one. Um, so we're gonna talk about the seven straights, seven traits of a strong marriage in Philippians one. Paul is writing a really cool letter to the Philipp. and there's so much in Philippians that we can pull out.

I mean, it's the famous verse everybody knows Philippians four 13, I can do all things through Christ who gives me strength. Yes, that's right. So what we need to pay attention to though when we're reading scripture, is we gotta pay attention to how the books open and how they close. because the bookends, the intro and the outro are two of the most important things that you can pay attention to.

So I say this about, um, Mar uh, excuse me, about the Bible. It opens with a marriage and it closes with one. Those are the bookends. So in Genesis two, we have a marriage between Adam and Eve. In Revelation 22, we have a marriage between Christ and the church. So everything in between is a battle. So if the Bible has the bookends of marriage, it shows you how important marriage is to the story.

Now when we're reading scripture, we gotta pay very close attention to how letters open and how they close. And so I was reading Philippians one, and I'm seeing how Paul opens his letter to the Philippians and he writes it in such a tender way that I thought, wow, if every spouse could communicate the same way to their partner, as Paul just communicated, the Philipp.

it would be like you would have a fantastic relationship. So I, I peeled out seven things to, and we're gonna look at these Awesome. To see what Paul did and see if we can apply them to our own marriage. I love it. So how about you take the time to do this? How about you do the, the seven things for me today?

Okay. You give them to me and then I'll try it out. , you're gonna test it out. All right. So let me just start in verse three of Philippians, um, chapter one, and we'll go through this, uh, verse by verse. I thank my. every time I remember you. Aw. Gratitude number one, thankful. Mm Seven. Traits of a strong marriage.

Number one, be thankful. Yeah. I mean, gratitude breaks down emotional walls. Yeah. Can you imagine though tour like if I sent you a text or if I wrote you a letter or if I sent you an email and I started it this way, Tori. I thank my God every time I remember you. Yeah. Like that's power. It is powerful. and just knowing what we know now about what the, the power of gratitude and how it releases the feel good chemicals in our body Yeah.

That keep us coming back for more, puts us on a perpetual cycle that is healthy for our bodies. Yeah. Um, it releases dopamine, oxytocin, um, serotonin. Serotonin. I don't even know what that does. Yeah. But I heard it's cool. , they're all, they're all chemicals that, um, benefit us and they're released. Gratitude.

You know what I think is so crazy about this is that when I look at that scripture and I see he says, I thank my God every time I remember you. Hmm. So he's saying that I'm, I'm proactively going back in my mind and I'm thinking Good thoughts about you. And when I think about like the memories that we have together, you know, cuz obviously Paul had been there in that Philippian church for a while and he had, you know, been on the road.

But then he was remembering back to experiences that he has with them when he remembers. He's thank. and that gratitude is something that's very powerful in your relationship. So that's number one. It's thankful. Number two, this is the very next verse. He says, in all my prayers for all of you, now just stop right there.

He's prayerful. So he's thankful and he's prayerful like. This is something that the Lord convicted me about a long time ago, is that you're supposed to be my number one priority in prayer. Mm-hmm. , you know, like I can pray for my business, I can even pray for the kids, I can pray for, um, uh, revival. I can pray for our governing leaders like we're supposed to be, you know, praying for, but ultimately my number one priority in prayer is to pray for you, is to ask God to just you.

help Tori. Mm-hmm. , you know, in whatever area that you need help with. And then us. Mm-hmm. , you know? Yeah. When I'm praying for you, I'm praying for us. So it's prayerful. I mean, you know how many people take that for granted? Yeah, I know I did. Mm-hmm. , I mean, that's a part of our story. You know, our first five years of marriage, we were hovering at a six or a seven on a scale of one to 10.

And one of the reasons why is cuz I was getting up every morning and praying really hard for my business and that's. My heart was going like, yeah. Where you, what your, what you treasure, your heart's gonna follow. And so your heart is revealed by what you pray for. Yeah. Like your treasure is revealed by what you pray for.

So we, we gotta be prayerful for our spouse. Yeah. So good. Agree. I agree. , just the power of focus and prayer bring, brings you into focus. Yeah. And you, you're if, if you're having a hard time with your spouse, at this point, keep praying and the prayers don't just need to be, Lord, change him or change. It's actually pray for them.

Like be empathetic, like, Lord, I know who they are and I know you love them. You know God's not just your father, he's your father-in-law. So what? What would God want you to do for his kid? Then do it and be a part of praying for them. So it's prayerful number two. So that was number two, number three as the rest of verse four.

And he says, um, in all my prayers, I pray for all of you. I always pray with joy because of your partnership in the gospel. So he says, I pray with joy. So that's, that's the, the third thing is joyful. You know, if you don't feel joy Mm. You need to rejoice. Yep. Well, how do you rejo, you know, like in terms of we hear rejoice.

Yeah. Like rejo. Well, the, you give back to God what you have. Hmm. So it's this state of surrender with the Lord where we're giving back what we have to. , whatever that is. And so, um, that's the, the essential element of love is sacrifice. Sacrifice is, is willing to give up something for the object of your affection.

That's how we rejoice. That's how we stay joyful. It's like living in a state of surrender to the Lord. I think so many spouses need to hear that. Like you, you need to be joyful in your relationship. Mm-hmm. , not just, oh, I'm so joyful because I'm married to you, but I'm a joyful person. Yeah. Regardless of how you may treat me at this moment, I'm still a joyful person.

So I think this joyful thing and, and understanding that if we don't feel joyful, we need to rejoice, which means we s rejoice. Get back in that. Yeah. We rejoice, we get back in that state of surrender, that state of giving back to God what he's given to us, and that's how we stay joyful. That's so good. . So that's number three.

So it's thankful, it's prayerful, it's joyful. Mm-hmm. . Let me, continuing on, we're gonna get to the, to the fourth one. He says this in the rest of that verse. He goes, because of your partnership in the gospel, he's like, I'm joyful because of your partnership in the gospel. That's number four is partnership.

Yeah. I think so many couples lose this where you need to recognize that your, your spouse is your partner. Like, oh, well that's of course my spouse is my partner. No, but think about it. Your buddy. Yeah. Like you have, you should fellowship with each other and Fellowship means friendly association, especially with people who share one's interest.

It's get a common interest. Find something that you both enjoy doing and do it together. Yeah. As partners, right? As buddies. Like what you did with me with college. You know, that that wasn't something that you were all excited about, but you allowed yourself to be my college football watching buddy. And you became a really good one actually.

I actually enjoy as much as you do now. Yeah. But the same is true with me. But there were some things that I did with Tory. You know, I, I tell everybody all the time when we took our love language, um, tests when we first got married, um, one of my bottom love languages was quality time. Right. But that was Tori's.

But then as I started spending quality time with her, next thing I know, I took a love language test a few weeks ago and my top love language was quality time. Right. It's crazy. It is crazy. Yeah. So it's There's a lot of walks. Yeah. When you didn't want to, but that's what God does is like Yeah. Changes your heart.

He sees that, that you're trying mm-hmm. and he comes in and then he does the, Which leads us to the very next component of a strong marriage. This is number five, and this is in verse six. And he says, um, be, I am confident of this, that he who began a good work in you will carry it onto completion until the day of Christ Jesus.

That number five is confidence. Hmm. It's, it's keeping a confidence in God. Yeah. It's projecting power into the future of your relationship. It's not, Yeah. My husband Al, you know, he does this. He always does this. He's never gonna change, but, well, you need to have confidence that God can do something.

Mm-hmm. , it's trusting that the Lord is gonna turn this thing around, is that if you do your part, you can trust that God will do his part. You want a strong marriage, well then you have to have confidence in the Lord that he's going to reward you and he's gonna do his. So good. Right? I love it. Number number six.

So it's, it's confidence. That's number five. Now moving on to number six. Okay. This is the very next verse. Okay. And, and Paul says this before he gets to the, to the number six, he, he does this, say this in verse seven. He says, it's right for me to feel this way about all of you. Hmm. So he just mentioned how thankful he was, how peripheral he was, how joyful he was, how he looked at them as partners, and how he had confidence in God that God could do.

And then he goes in, he says, I feel all these awesome things about you. It's right for me to feel this way about you. So he's, he's, he's, it's like when God created mm-hmm. , you know, in the six days and God creates, and at the end of each day he says, Hey, that's good. Yeah, that's good. Paul's writing this and he's saying all these nice things about the people.

And then he goes, by the way, it's really good that I'm feeling this way about you right now. Yeah. Yeah. Like he's taking it. . It's an experience that he's having to say those things out loud words are really powerful. Yeah. So I love that. That's really good. So he says, it's right for me to feel this way about you since I have you in my heart, and whether I am in chains or defend or defending and confirming the gospel, all of you share in God's grace with me.

That's number six, empathy. Hmm. That Paul right there was saying, Hey, I'm with you and you're with me. It's a, we're in this thing together, it's, I'm gonna turn toward my spouse. I'm not gonna turn away from my. Tori, and I've talked a lot about that on our podcast and in our book, that how do you respond to your spouse when they do, uh, make a bid for affection, whatever that is.

Do you turn toward or turn away turning toward says, Hey, we're in this thing together, spouse going through something difficult. You know, imagine the, the classic example wife makes dinner. It's already husband shows up an hour late. But imagine instead of her being upset, she goes up and gives him a hug and says, I know if you're an hour late, something must have happened.

I'm really, is there anything. You need to talk about you doing okay. Yeah. Like that kind of thing. Now, I know that's a little extreme, but the, the mindset is the same. Yeah. It's so good and it's so important to, to recognize those patterns. If you see a pattern in your life where you're turning away from your spouse.

you really need to take, take a minute to figure out why that is. That's happened to us so many times in our relationship where I'm turning away from you or you're turning away from me and we're like, okay, what's going on here? Like, what is this? Let's talk about it. Let's figure out what the root of it is, because this isn't drawing us close, it's drawing us further apart, and that's not where we wanna go.

That's not where we wanna be. Yeah. So, but you really do need to nip those things in the butt quickly. Mm-hmm. or they just, you just the, the wedge. Greater and greater if you don't. Yeah. Take it from our experiences. And so then what you do is you make sure, and Tory and I, we we're gonna be releasing our beauty and battle marriage bootcamp along with our beauty and battle marriage challenge five day marriage challenge.

We're gonna do it soon, probably around Valentine's Day. But in our bootcamp, we talk about how you need to, you need to make sure that your actions align with your goals and values, not your emotions. Yep. Don't let your actions be determined by your emotions. But let your actions be determined by your goals and values.

So what to is saying is true is that even when you don't want to turn towards your spouse mm-hmm. and everything inside of you, including your own body, is saying, heck no. Get away. Yep. Uh, don't allow your actions to be determined by that emotion. Right. Figure out what you want in that moment. Exactly. I was just about to say, and what you do is you just ask the simple question, what do I want?

Yeah. Do I want connection? Do I want, uh, or do I want to create a gap between me and my spouse, you know, separating me from. my greatest support. Yeah. Right. Yeah. It's like sometimes you don't even realize that the things that you are doing are, are, um, creating the very thing you don't want. Yeah. So you just simply have to say, wait, what do I want?

Mm-hmm. . Well, I actually, I actually want connection. I actually want a good relationship. I want Jason and I, um, to be on the same team. Right? Yeah. Well, is it what I'm doing, getting me what I want? Or is it taking me from what I want? Yeah. And it's, it's asking what do I ultimately, because what you may want in the, in the short term might involve like a noose or a knife or something like that.

A noose, noose. I was like, what? Yeah. Get a rope . Um, but ultimately, like, what do I ultimately want? What I ultimately want is connection. Exactly. Deeper connection with my spouse. Yeah. So therefore, I'm gonna allow my words and my deeds to line up with what I want, not what I feel. Mm-hmm. , that's important. So number six was empathy and number.

Here in verse eight, and this is the last one. He says, God can testify how I long for all of you with the affection of Jesus Christ. Number seven is affectionate. Yeah, it's affection. You know what affection is? It's a gentle feeling of fondness or liking. Hmm. So how do you feel about that? You know, how do you feel about your spouse if you go back and remember what you used to feel, even if your emotions maybe don't feel quite so loving?

Right. , go back and remember those things and just know that, that you married that person. Oh, well they're changed now. Well, maybe on the outside they have, but maybe there's some wounding that's gone on. Maybe there's some stress that's there that's kind of clouding it. Maybe there's some swelling in their life.

Hmm. And the swelling needs to go down. You know how swelling goes down. Healthy marriage habits. Yep. . It's, it's fun stuff that you guys can do together. It's watching a movie, it's finding another show that you guys enjoy and just doing it together. It's going for walks, it's doing things that don't allow you to clash.

Hmm. Yeah. Because there's gonna be plenty of opportunities to clash, you know? And you know, ultimately what leads to affection is appreciation. Right. Again, we always go back to gratitude. Mm-hmm. , you know, inter Psalm 100, 100 verse four, enter my gates with Thanksgiving, my courts with praise. Mm-hmm. , we get God's present.

By thanking him for what he does and praising him for who he is. We do the same with our spouse. Yep. That appreciation leads to affection. So, so those are our seven traits. Tour right outta Philippians one. Let me give 'em to you one more time. Okay. All right. They're thankful. Mm-hmm. a strong marriage.

They, they're thankful for each other. They're prayerful. Yeah. They pray for each other. They're joy. Yeah. They're not like walking around as zombies, you know? Mm-hmm. , they, they, they actually are decently joyful and happy. Mm-hmm. . Um, they treat each other as partners. That's number four. Number five, they have confidence in God, that God can turn things around for the good.

They're not projecting powerlessness into the future. , they're projecting power. I love that. Um, they're number six. They're empathetic. Yeah. For each other. Re remember, sympathy sees a person drowning and throws a life vest. Empathy dives into the water. Mm-hmm. . So jump in there with your spouse. And number seven, they're affectionate, which is that, that gentle feeling of fondness or liking.

and that is what makes a strong marriage. That's so good. I love that Paul, Paul wasn't even married and he's saying this stuff, , everything's easier to write than to, than to do. Boom. Paul, she just loved one at you. That was a grenade from Tori. Oh no, I'm, I'm still a big Paul fan. Yeah, me too. . So. Well, hey, thanks for hanging out with us real quick though.

Oh yeah. I gotta share a recipe. Oh, I forgot about that. Um, so Lendy may. , we call her Lundy, Maye juvie, sometimes . From, from the Grinch. Grinch. Yeah. Um, she is, um, home with us the second semester homeschooling. Um, and so she's helping me with meals. Oh, that's so cool. And so we made a meal together. You'll see her on, uh, the reel that I'm gonna put together to show you how we did it.

Um, chick, um, imitation Healthy Chick-fil-A. Oh yeah. Tenders. Oh gosh, yes. Air. That was so good. Yeah, they're so good. So we have a, we have an air fryer. You can, you can definitely bake these in the oven, but if you have an air fryer, it, it really did turn it up a notch. They turned out really, really good.

They're super healthy. And you made special sauce too. Yeah. Chick-fil-A sauce, like a healthy Chick-fil-A sauce. Um, so anyways, I'll share the recipe. Basically the, the secret. Ingredient to making, um, your chicken tenders taste just very, very similar to Chick-fil-A. Marinate them in pickle juice. Ooh, yeah, that's true.

Forgot about that. Yep. , I have heard about that though. Pickle juice. Pickle juice. So you marinate them overnight in pickle juice. And then, um, the, the, the, um, what you br them in is basically, um, a little bit of coconut sugar. . If you don't do that, it honestly doesn't taste like Chick-fil-A. Like, I've tried it without any sugar, without sweetener.

Can't do it. Chick-fil-A uses some kind of sweetener in there for sure. Yeah, they do. It's paprika. Um, coconut sugar, salt, pepper, and I used a gluten free, um, flour and some gluten-free Panko. Panko. Yep. And what is pan. I ate it. I honestly don't know, but it's like a breadcrumb, but this is gluten-free and it's a little bit more crispy.

Okay. I think it's rice. Yeah, I think it's like an organic rice. Nice. Anyways, it's not a ton, just a little bit of Panko to give that crunch and it turned out so good. Everyone loved it. Um, I mean, if you are eating Chick-fil-A, like. Four days a week, and then you have this, they might be like, Ugh, really gross, but it's definitely better for you.

But if you're not, you know, like eating like that and you're eating healthy, this, it's, it's legit. It's really good. Yeah. So anyways, I'll share that with you. And then the Chick-fil-A sauce, all it is, is like mayo, um, um, mustard, honey mustard, or not honey mustard honey. Um, Dejan Mustard and a few other ingredients.

It's very simple. Oh, lemon juice. It's like basically it, and it tastes just like Chick-fil-A sauce. It is great. And the best part was I was literally murdering those things and I liked it better than Chick-fil-A, honestly. Um, yeah. Cause you know, it's healthy. So, Tori, this is so good. It tastes even better than Chick-fil-A.

Thank you so much. She's like, my pleasure. , not really, but that would've been a perfect line. Oh. Does everybody know that? That's what they say at Chick-fil-A? Of course. , my pleasure. Hey guys, you know what? It was a pleasure hanging out with you. It was a pleasure today, so don't forget, rate, review, subscribe.

Thanks for hanging out with us and we will see you next week. Yeah, on Beauty and Battle. Yeah. You know what? Maybe we should do like a true crime episode. . On what? On, I don't know. Some couple that ended up like one of 'em killed the other and Oh my gosh. Next week on Beauty and Battle. Okay, that one's not gonna work.

I don't even know how to respond to that. Yeah, I know that's stupid. But still, and what you guys love about us is I don't cut any of that stuff out. I'm sitting here going, oh my gosh. Please cut that out, . All right. Thanks guys. Thanks for hanging out with us. See ya. Bye-Bye.