Spousal Communication

Introduction: This lesson is on spousal communication. When was the last time you heard teaching about spousal communication in a Sunday school? This is not frequently taught or addressed in church and yet it is something that we do on a daily basis. Whether the spousal communication is good or bad, it is mostly left for the secular world to address. However, the secular world doesn’t have the Bible to bring out or address good and bad communication. Because you live with your spouse FULL TIME, it’s a great idea to figure out how to communicate with our spouses so that our lives can be peaceful and productive. 

If you want to have good spousal communication:  

  1. Listen to your Spouse– Genesis 2:18 “and the LORD God said, it is NOT good that the man should be alone; I will make him and help meet for him”.  If God created the woman to be a help meet (a match) for her husband, the question is this, can you help your husband effectively if you don’t listen to him? or if the husband doesn’t listen effectively to the wife. What is your spouses’ favorite color, hobby, sport, book. 
  • Be Swift to Hear- James 1:19 Wherefore, my beloved brethren, let every man be swift to hear, slow to speak, slow to wrath”.  You and I are to be “swift to hear, and slow to speak”, that’s the reason we were given two ears and only one mouth. It is difficult to hear while you speak at the same time. A two way conversation has listening then speaking, and effective communication takes place when listening and speaking don’t happen at the same time. 
  • Hear then Answer- Prov 18:13 says, “He that answereth a matter before he heareth it, it is folly and shame unto him.”  A person that answers ahead of time will be ashamed when they don’t really know the whole matter. 
  • You don’t listen in a conversation with someone else when you are: 
    • Emotionally- angry, sad, betrayed, lonely. 
    • Physically- tired, stressed, hungry, thirsty. 
    • Ready- ready to respond. You are thinking while they are talking. 
    • Not listening- you don’t care what the other person is saying. 
    • Distracted- kids are yelling, something needs to get done. 
    • Confused- din’t hear correctly, didn’t understand what was said. 
  1. Watch your Verbal and Non-verbal Language- 

Non-verbal- Hug, kiss, eye contact, crossed arms, avoiding eye contact, silent treatment, rolling eyes. 

Verbal– Communicate respectfully and lovingly- Ephesians 4:29 “Let no corrupt communication proceed out of your mouth, but that which is good to the use of edifying, that it may minister grace unto the hearers”. We are first and foremost brothers and sisters in Christ, then husband and wife. 

  • Communicate words that uplift you spouse- Proverbs 15:23 “a man hath joy by the answer of his mouth: and a word spoken in due season, how good is it!”  
  • Communicate ideas that help your spouse- Ecclesiastes 4:10 “For if they fall, the one will lift up his fellow: but woe to him that is alone when he fallen; for he hath not another to help him up”. 
  • Communicate words that edify- I Thessalonians 5:11 “Therefore comfort yourselves together, and edify one another, even as also ye do”. 
  • 1 Peter 3:1-2 “Likewise, ye wives, be in subjection to your own husbands, that, if any obey not the word, they also may without the word be won by the conversation of the wives; while they behold your chase conversation coupled with fear.” Conversation includes our communication. 
  1. Understand how your spouse communicates-  A couple hours after getting married you can quickly figure out how your spouse communicates. What they like, don’t like, etc. 
  • Does your spouse take time to think of what he or she wants to say before he says it. 
  • Is your spouse quite when angry. Leave them alone. 
  • Do you need space before beginning to speak again? Give them space. 
  • Is it difficult to have a conversation with kids talking in the background. 
  • Can you multitask or can you only do one thing at a time. 
  1. Rule Your Spirit– Proverbs 16:32 “He that is slow to anger is better than the mighty; and he that ruleth his spirit that he that taketh a city” 
  • Be slow to anger when talking about things that frustrate you or don’t go your way. 
  • Ruling your spirit is not making a big deal about small/insignificant things.
  • Emotional decision will dominate your spirit instead of ruling your spirit. 
  • Big decisions bring stress, fear, uncertainty, and will shake your spirit, rule it. 
  • Proverbs 25:28 “He that hath no rule over his own spirit is like a city that is broken down, and without walls”. 
  • Broken down and needs to be rebuilt in order to get going again. 
  • Without walls and anything can get in. Walls need to be rebuilt and fortified. 
  1. Be Truthful- Ephesians 4:25 “wherefore putting away lying, speak every man truth with his neighbor; for we are members one of another.” It’s never a good idea to lie about anything, it usually doesn’t end well. A relationship between husband and wife should be honest and truthful. What can keep us from telling the truth to our spouses?
      • Being critiqued. 
      • Being told the truth, and don’t really want to know the truth. 
      • Being disagreed with.
      • It may cause discomfort, shame, embarrassment, etc. 
      • It makes us vulnerable. 
  1. Be mindful of your Words– James 3:1-12- The whole point is to do what Vs 2 says, to not offend in word. (Telling your spouse, “you ALWAYS do that”, is not a good idea). Perhaps he/she is trying to change and your only making him/her not want to change. 
  • It does’t take much to offend someone and then the relationship experiences a small strain which if left untreated will become a big problem.
  • Proverbs 18:21 “Death and life are in the power of the tongue: and they that love it shall eat the fruit thereof”.  Avoid hurtful communication- Proverbs 21:23 “Whoso keepeth his mouth and his tongue keepeth his soul from troubles”. 
  • Some trivial things don’t matter, don’t make them a big deal. 

Conclusion: When you decided to marry your spouse, you didn’t know everything about them, it takes a lifetime of getting to know your spouse. These things are practical and will help us communicate better with our spouses as we get to know what they like, don’t like, and are understating and patient along the way.