Some of your most meaningful relationships will be the ones where you will experience the most hurt. But that doesn’t have to mean the relationship is over. If we want to live with Godly, healthy relationships whether romantic or not, there are three things that need to be present to stay committed through the tough times.



Any of your most meaningful relationship can be healthy and holy if you are BOTH committed to three things: Sacrifice, Transparency, Forgiveness


Which is most important? Whichever one is missing!


[Ephesians 5:21]

“And further, submit to one another out of reverence for Christ.”


  • Humility is the glue that holds the legs of the stool together
  • No humility? No holiness and health


We feel like most of our problems are someone else’s fault.


[James 4:1]

“What is causing the quarrels and fights among you? Don’t they come from the evil desires at war within you?”


In marriage, here’s the guiding principle…


[Ephesians 4:1-2]

“Therefore I, a prisoner for serving the Lord, beg you to lead a life worthy of your calling, for you have been called by God. Always be humble and gentle. Be patient with each other, making allowance for each other’s faults because of your love.”


Exercise” Knee-to-knee. Ask your spouse to rate how loved they feel (by you) right now on a scale of 1-10. Regardless of their number, follow it up by asking, “What is one thing that I can do to make you feel MORE loved by me.”


THAT will lead you toward the three legs of the stool!




Great relationships are not one-sided but built on the willingness to mutually yield.


[Matthew 16:24-25]

“Then Jesus said to his disciples, “If any of you wants to be my follower, you must give up your own way, take up your cross, and follow me. If you try to hang on to your life, you will lose it. But if you give up your life for my sake, you will save it.”


In what relationship would your selfishness be most damaging right now?


What do you NEED to be willing to sacrifice for the health and holiness of your marriage?



This is not appropriate in every relationship I have but is NECESSARY in the most important relationships I have!


[Ephesians 4:22-25]

“throw off your old sinful nature and your former way of life, which is corrupted by lust and deception. Instead, let the Spirit renew your thoughts and attitudes. Put on your new nature, created to be like God—truly righteous and holy. So stop telling lies. Let us tell our neighbors the truth, for we are all parts of the same body.”


  • Someone needs to see and know the REAL you
  • If married, one of those people MUST be your spouse
  • Think about whether you’re comfortable being transparent with your spouse
    • If so, evidence of health
    • If not, there’s a reason, right? That’s what you need to work on, right now.


Vulnerability is at the CORE of your spiritual development!


[James 5:16]

“Confess your sins to each other and pray for each other so that you may be healed. The earnest prayer of a righteous person has great power and produces wonderful results.”


Transparency is the secret ingredient to intimacy in a relationship.

    • The secret sauce to Amos 3:3, “How can two walk together unless they are agreed.”



This is 100% necessary in any relationship of transparency

Your unwillingness to forgive may be the reason your spouse is NOT transparent with you


[Matthew 18:21-22]

“Then Peter came to him and asked, “Lord, how often should I forgive someone who sins against me? Seven times?” “No, not seven times,” Jesus replied, “but seventy times seven!”

  • Jesus didn’t put conditions on forgiveness. You know why?
  • Forgiveness is as much about us as it is the other person
    • Offense creates a debt that they owe us
    • NOTE: Forgiveness doesn’t mean that it’s okay that they hurt you. It means that you won’t hold them in your debt because they did.
    • Our willingness to release others from the debt they owe us, sets us free from the pain of the offense that created the debt


God’s made it possible for your marriage to be healthy again but that doesn’t mean it won’t be difficult. 


Application Questions

1. What stood out to you from this message and why?

2. What is one thing God is telling you to START doing because of this message?

3. What is one thing God is telling you to STOP doing because of this message?

4. How will this message change how you act at home, work and in the your relationships?