Two nights that could transform your marriage. Join Raeul and Susan Cox as they introduce the process that has helped thousands and thousands of couples across the country reconnect and take the next step in their marriage.


At I Still Do, you will learn:

• The difference between talking and communicating
• What to do when you realize your marriage is not what you thought it would be
• Four habits that healthy couples have



Session 1: Grace and Forgiveness

Ephesians 2.8-9 “For by grace you have been saved through faith. And this is not your own doing;it is a gift of God.”

Colossians 3.13 “Bearing with one another and, if one has a complaint against another, forgiving each other, as the Lord has forgiven you, so you also must forgive.”

Ephesians 4.32 “Be kind to one another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, as God in Christ forgave you.”

Psalm 32.1 “How blessed is he whose transgression is forgiven. Whose sin is covered!”

2 Corinthians 9.8 “And God is able to make all grace abound to you, so that always having all sufficiency in everything, you may have an abundance for every good deed.”


• How have you blamed your spouse for the problems in your marriage instead of looking at your own sin?

• Ask your spouse how your sin has damaged your marriage and what are some next steps toward healing?

• Take some time this week to pray Psalm 139:23-24, “Search me, O God, and know my heart…see if there be any hurtful way in me….” What did God show you?

• When your spouse frustrates, hurts, disappoints you, look for an opportunity to extend grace.

©Watermark Community Church

Forgiveness in Action

Step 1

Think about the ways you have hurt, disappointed, frustrated, or not been truthful with your spouse. Pray Psalm 139:23-24, which says, “Search me, O God, and know my heart! Try me and know my thoughts! And see if there be any grievous way in me, and lead me in the way everlasting!”

Ask God to show you sins for which you need to ask forgiveness and write up to five of them below. You will probably think of many more, but think of this as a first step in setting new patterns for your relationship. You can come back later to discuss additional issues.


Step 2

Confess each of these to God and ask for His forgiveness. 1 John 1:9 says, “If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.”

While you have wronged your spouse, you have first and foremost sinned against God. Psalm 51:4 says, “Against You, You only, have I sinned and done what is evil in Your sight.”

Example: “God, please forgive me for my critical words against my husband. Instead of being kind as You have commanded, I have chosen to be hurtful. Thank You for forgiving me.”

Step 3

Sit with your spouse without any distractions (phones, TV, kids, etc.) and confess each of these issues one at a time. Do not make excuses or try to rationalize why you may have done them; simply confess what you have done. Be sure to give your spouse time with each issue to express any pain, hurt, or disappointment they feel. Your role is to humbly listen to your spouse and make it safe for them to share with you.

Example: “I need to confess to you that I have put more energy into my job than into our relationship and I know this has hurt you. I want to ask your forgiveness, but before I do, I would like to hear from you what this has felt like or anything else you would like to share with me about this issue.

Step 4

Ask specifically for forgiveness for the issue being discussed. Be careful not to only use phrases like “I’m sorry” or “I apologize” because these are statements of fact about yourself and do not require a response from the person who has been hurt. When you ask your spouse to forgive you, you are putting yourself in a position of vulnerability and asking for a response.

Example: “Would you please forgive me for making work a greater priority than our marriage?”

Step 5

If your spouse has asked you for forgiveness, you are to grant them forgiveness specifically as they have asked. You may need to refer back to Lesson 4 and remember that your responsibility is to forgive, even if you don’t have the desire to do so.

Example: “Yes, I do forgive you for making your work a greater priority than our marriage. Thank you for being humble enough to confess and ask for forgiveness.”

Step 6

Repeat this process for all of the issues you have listed.

This process can be a very pivotal time for your marriage as you begin to make a practice of asking for and granting forgiveness. Don’t worry if the process didn’t go as well as you hoped: forgiveness is difficult and takes practice. The good news is that being married gives you plenty of opportunities to get better.

Remembering your own brokenness and God’s grace and forgiveness for your own sin will make it much easier to forgive your spouse.


Session 2: Understanding Our Role

1 Corinthians 11:3 “But I want you to understand that Christ is the head of every man, and the man is the head of the woman, and God is the head of Christ.”

Ephesians 5:25-29 “Husbands, love your wives, just as Christ also loved the church and gave himself up for her so that He might sanctify her, having cleansed her by the washing of water with the word, that He might present to Himself the church in all her glory, having no spot or wrinkle or any such thing; but that she would be holy and blameless. So husbands ought also to love their own wives as their own bodies. He who loves his own wife loves himself; for no one ever hated his own flesh, but nourishes and cherishes it, just as Christ also does the church.”

Genesis 2:18 “Then the Lord God said, “It is not good for man to be alone; I will make him a helper suitable for him.”

1 Peter 3:1-2 “In the same way, you wives be submissive to your own husbands so that even if any of them are disobedient to the word, they may be won without a word by the behavior of their wives as they observe your chaste and respectful behavior.”


• Ask your husband: Is there anything I am doing or failing to do that seems to send a signal that I do not honor you or your leadership in our home?

• Ask your wife: Is there anything I can do in our home to create a place where you feel more loved and cherished?

• Ask your husband: Do you feel I understand the goals God has placed in your heart? How can I help you achieve them?

• Ask each other: Do you feel there is anything keeping either one or both of us from God’s best in our lives? What can we do to move forward?


Session 3: Communication and Conflict

Communication is one of the most important aspects of any relationship and an essential ingredient to achieving marital oneness. Recent studies show that 80% of all divorces in the U.S. stem from poor communication.

There are two goals for this session:

1. To highlight how Scripture affirms the necessity of and provides a great model for good communication between husband and wife and,

2. To provide practical ways to improve communication for you and your spouse to move towards oneness in marriage.


James 1:19 “Know this, my beloved brothers: let every person be quick to hear, slow to speak, slow to anger.”

Proverbs 18:2 “A fool takes no pleasure in understanding, but only in expressing his opinion.”

James 4:1-3 “What causes quarrels and what causes fights among you? Is it not this, that your passions are at war within you? You desire and do not have, so you murder. You covet and cannot obtain, so you fight and quarrel. You do not have, because you do not ask. You ask and do not receive, because you ask wrongly, to spend it on your passions.”

Ephesians 4:25-32 Therefore, having put away falsehood, let each one of you speak the truth with his neighbor, for we are members one of another. Be angry and do not sin; do not let the sun go down on your anger, and give no opportunity to the devil…. Let no corrupting talk come out of your mouths, but only such as is good for building up, as fits the occasion, that it may give grace to those who hear. And do not grieve the Holy Spirit of God, by whom you were sealed for the day of redemption. Let all bitterness and wrath and anger and clamor and slander be put away from you, along with all malice. Be kind to one another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, as God in Christ forgave you.

Matthew 18:15-17 “If your brother sins against you, go and tell him his fault, between you and him alone. If he listens to you, you have gained your brother. But if he does not listen, take one or two others along with you, that every charge may be established by the evidence of two or three witnesses. If he refuses to listen to them, tell it to the church. And if he refuses to listen even to the church, let him be to you as a Gentile and a tax collector.


• Why do you think communication and conflict are a struggle for couples?

• With which of the four negative communication patterns do you most closely identify?

• What’s the difference between saying, “I’m sorry”, and “I’m sorry, will you forgive me?”?

• How well do you and your spouse handle situations where one of you needs to ask for forgiveness? What needs to change?

• How does your family of origin communicate and deal with conflict? How does it differ from your spouse’s family?

• How does selfishness affect your communication with your spouse?

• Practice the Speaker-Listener technique. Start off by sharing one positive trait about your significant other.

• What are some topics/issues that typically lead to tough conversations (i.e. in-laws, money, sex, kids,)?

• What is one thing you learned tonight that you and your spouse need to apply?

• What changes do you need to make with regard to how you communicate and conflict?


(material adapted from the book A Lasting Promise by Stanley,

Trathen, McCain, Bryan)

A. Goal of communication: Mutual Understanding

B. Four Destructive Patterns of Communication

1. W__________________ unwillingness to get in or stay in important discussions

Exit Strategy:

2. E___________________ negative responses to one another where the ante is continually upped

Exit Strategy:

3. N___________________ believes the motive of the other person to be more negative than is really the case

Exit Strategy:

4. I____________________ subtle of indirect putdowns of the thoughts, feelings, or character of another

Exit Strategy:

C.Speaker Listener Technique

1. Rules for Speaker

a. Speak for yourself. Don’t mind-read!

b. Don’t go on and on.

c. Stop and let the listener paraphrase.

2. Rules for Listener

a. Paraphrase what you hear.

b. Don’t rebut. Focus on what the speaker is saying.

3. Rules for Both

a. The speaker has the floor.

b. Speaker keeps the floor while the listener paraphrases.

c. Share the floor.


Don’t have hard conversations when you are:

1. H________________________

2. A________________________

3. L________________________

4. T________________________


Session 4: Growing in Intimacy

Philippians 2:3-4 “Do nothing from selfishness or empty conceit, but with humility of mind regard one another as more important than yourselves.”

1 Corinthians 10:31 “Whether, then, you eat or drink or whatever you do, do all to the glory of God.”

Hebrews 13:4 “Let marriage be held in honor among all, and let the marriage bed be undefiled, for God will judge the sexually immoral and adulterous.”

Song of Songs 7:6 “How beautiful and how delightful you are, My love, with all your charms.”

Proverbs 5:18 “Let your fountain be blessed, and rejoice in the wife of your youth.”


• Do you tend to minimize or over-emphasize the importance of sex? Why?

• Which do you struggle with the most: seeing sex as good, seeing your body as good, seeing sex as a gift to be enjoyed or seeing sex as an opportunity to glorify God?

• Ask your spouse how they feel about your physical intimacy.

Ask what they feel are the biggest barriers to intimacy and what you can do to address them? Seek to understand and focus on what you can do to serve your spouse.

• Is there anything in your life that could be having a negative impact on your sex life, e.g.. sex abuse, pornography, or not taking care of your body? What next step do you need to take to begin to address this?

Session 5: Embrace Oneness & Diligence

1 Thessalonians 5:14 “And we urge you, brothers, admonish the idle, encourage the fainthearted, help the weak, be patient with them all.”

Hebrews 10:24 “And let us consider how to stimulate one another to love and good deeds.”

1 Thessalonians 4:10 “But we urge you, brethren to excel still more.”

Proverbs 24:3-4 “By wisdom a house is built, and by understanding it is established; and by knowledge the rooms are filled with all precious and pleasant riches.”


• Which of the 4 commands in 1 Thessalonians 5:14 do you find most difficult? Why?

• Read Hebrews 10:24. Ask God to show you ways you can help your spouse.

• Ask your spouse one area where they would like to become more like Christ. Ask how you can tangibly help then in that area.

• Celebrate your spouse: Think of meaningful ways to let your spouse know you are grateful for their investment in your marriage!

• Read Mark 10:8 “And the two shall become one flesh; so they are no longer two, but one flesh.” What does it look like to be “one” in your marriage?

“A oneness marriage is formed by a husband and wife who are grafting intimacy, trust, and understanding with one another. It’s a couple chiseling out a common direction, purpose, and plan. A oneness marriage demands a lifetime process of relying on God and forging an enduring relationship according to His design. It’s more than a mere mingling of two humans—it’s a tender merger of body, soul, and spirit.” ~Dennis Rainey Family Life