If you are not familiar with Tripp, he is an author, pastor, and counselor with numerous helpful Gospel-centered resources. I highly commend his material. If you are interested in purchasing this book on marriage or buying the DVDs of this conference, you can do so here. You won't be disappointed! (At the bottom of this post is a short video of Tripp explaining the idea behind his book and seminars.)
Below are my notes from the conference that I will hope stir conversations in your own marriage as it has in mine; and I hope it will also whet your appetite to read and explore more of Tripp's resources. Most of these things relate to much more than just marriage and are applicable to all relationships in life. The notes below are a combination of exact quotes and my own effort to scribble down all that he was saying as best as I could:
- We don't live most of our life in the "big moments."
- We live in the mundane, little moments-- and this is where marriage resides.
- Thus, the character of your marriage is set in the 10,000 little moments, not in the 2-3 big moments over the entirety of your marriage.
Three things you need to know about your marriage, but never thought to ask:
Principle 1: A marriage of unity, understanding, and love is not rooted in romance, but in worship. (Luke 6:34-35; Romans 1:25)
- Romance is never the cause of a good marriage but the result of a good marriage.
- Worship is first your identity before it is your activity. What is worship? Attaching meaning, purpose, well-being, and identity to something.
- If you only go to marriage passages to learn about marriage, you'll never truly understand what God has to say to you in your marriage.
- Luke 6:43-35- Your words and behavior are more controlled by whats in you than what's outside you.
- Most marriage books only deal with behavior and not the heart. Manipulation, threat, and guilt are all attempts to change your marriage without dealing with the heart.
- What is the heart? The causal core of your person.
- 3 Resulting Implications: 1) All marriage problems are heart problems. The circumstances are just the occasion for the problem. 2) Lasting change will always travel through the pathway of the heart. 3) Your biggest problem in marriage exists inside of you, not outside of you. YOU are your biggest problem.
- The DNA of sin is selfishness- "me-ism"
- Sin is anti-social in its fundamental form. We are created for community - with God (upward) and others (outward). Sin turns us to self (inward).
- Christ did not come so much to deliver us from our spouse but rather from self. That's good news.
- Quit being more concerned about the other person than about self.
- If you minimize your own need, you devalue grace. Confession is an open door to grace.
- One of the huge problems is that most marriages are built on attraction, not love. Thus, when attraction goes, marriage goes. When marriage is built on "what you can do for me" or how the other person makes me feel good about myself, the inevitable result will be demise.
3 Treasure Principles-
- Everyone lives for some type of treasure (your dreams, wishes, desires, motivations, etc.)
- The thing that is your treasure will control your heart.
- What controls your heart will control your behavior. Words and behavior are always a revealer of what your heart treasures.
- What are you living for in your marriage? What is it that you want?
- A desire for a good thing becomes a bad thing when it becomes a ruling thing.
- Your marriage will always be enhanced or victimized by what you treasure.
- What do you attach your identity, sense of well-being, and peace to?
- When you are happy with your marriage, what is it that is making you happy?
- This can be seen in an attitude of entitlement. You feel it's your right to demands a certain thing and then judge the love of the other person by their willingness to meet your demand.
- You don't actually need a spouse that meets your needs and God has never promised that anyway. We have everything we need at the foot of the cross and in the grace of Christ.
Kingdom of Self = Manipulation (feeding and indulging the sinful nature)
Kingdom of God = Ministry (serving each other in love)
- Seeking God's kingdom means making God's purpose your purpose (Gal 5:19-23)
- A good marriage is a good marriage because there are people saying "no" to self.
- My problem is never that I don't love others enough; my problem is that I don't love God enough.
- Love = willing self-sacrifice for the good of another that does not demand reciprocation or that the person being loved is deserving
- Suspending love from another person is legalism.
- Marriage = One flawed person living with another flawed person living in fallen world, but with a faithful God.
- Worshiping God as Creator: the "hard-wiring" of your spouse. One of our problems is that we don't want to accept the person that God made. Where are your cursing the Creator and thinking you are a better creator?
- Worshiping God as Sovereign: God's "story" and plan for your life. The ultimate goal of marriage is not your happiness but your holiness. The differences in your marriage are not in the way of God's plan; it IS God's plan!
- Worshiping God as Savior: Your growth in grace. If you ever see your spouse's sin, it is not a hassle but rather an act of mercy and grace from God by making you a witness to the need so that you can be used as a tool of change and grace in their life.