Quickie Marriage
We have a couple who met at our retreat in October who are getting engaged this month. That is less than four months that they have known each other. One was just divorced in 2006 after a marriage of about 1 - 1 1/2 years. Both have been married twice previously. Do you think this marriage could possibly have a chance of survival? Do you think that this is a God-inspired marriage?
Make it Happen! :-)
It is really difficult to know if the marriage has a chance of survival, but I certain wish them much success. Certainly they will have a lot of baggage with which to deal. The more recent our baggage is the more it seems to appear within our present life. They certainly need our prayers.

As for God inspiring the marriage; that's difficult to know. I do hope that they have spent much time on their knees in sincere prayer and meditation.
Yes, it would be nice to marry, however, it seems to me that a person who has done their recovery work would be a 'whole person' who would have a lot more to contribute to a relationship than two people who are only half complete. Or am I wrong?
Make it Happen! :-)
No I don't believe you are worng. Actually, I think you are right on!
I have a DVD called , "Shot In The Heart." It is a story about a family with a husband who is very abusive. The effect upon the wife and children is just heart breaking. In the end one of the sons is executed for killing someone. All because the father and mother had not done their own recovery work and thus the children did not stand a chance.

No, I'm not saying the two mentioned above are abusive in any way shape or form, but they certainly have not done their recovery work and they would do well to date, do their recovery work and marry later.

(Aren't I a great authority on the subject!? :o )
Make it Happen! :-)
Here is an article I found on the Assemblies of God website by Denis Franck. Very interesting!

Are You Ready for a Relationship?

Many single or divorced individuals are unaware of their emotional and spiritual readiness to enter a relationship. Many “jump” into relationships much too soon. Lack of readiness can cause you to choose emotionally unavailable partners or repeat old, unhealthy relationship patterns.

The following checklist is designed to help you explore your beliefs and skills about intimate relationships. Negative beliefs and a lack of skills can prevent you from being able to identify healthy partners. To complete the checklist, mark the items that are true for you. Total them at the end of each section and add the section scores together.

Personal Relationship Patterns
I am clear on what didn't work in my past relationships
I know the role I played in those relationships
I am clear on what didn't work in my parents' relationship
Comparing the two above, I understand my relationship pattern
I have identified the types of partners I tend to attract
I have identified my relationship pattern
I understand how I developed my relationship pattern
I have identified the ways my relationship patterns benefited me
I have identified the ways my relationship patterns cost me
I have discovered what I believe about relationships

Letting Go of Your Past
I am complete with and have forgiven my mother
My mother did the best she could
I am complete with and have forgiven my father
My father did the best he could
I am complete with and have forgiven each of my past relationship partners
Each of my past partners did the best he/she could
I harbor no hope of reconnecting with past relationship partners
I am complete with and have forgiven the opposite gender
I have forgiven and no longer compete with the same gender
I am complete with and have forgiven myself for my past relationship mistakes

Understanding Your Needs
I know everyone has needs and they are ok to have
I know I have needs and it is vital for them to be met
I know that someone I just met can't meet my needs
I know what my needs are
I recognize and know what makes me needy
I can effectively articulate may needs to others
I consistently take great care of myself
I have a system that meets my key needs
I react out of my fullness in Christ
I no longer need a relationship to meet my needs

Strong Boundaries
I can and do say "no"
I have boundaries that define and protect me
I know clearly what my boundaries are
I do not ignore people crossing my boundaries
I have an empowering boundary setting process
I am always heard when setting boundaries
I am being supportive of other people when I set boundaries
I am worthy to set personal boundaries
I gently but effectively educate people about my boundaries
I respect and honor another's boundaries

Healthy Partners & Relationships
I know what I want in a relationship.
I have defined what I need to thrive in a relationship
I have defined what is important to me living day to day with a partner
I have identified the key relationship needs I want to be met by a partner
I have defined what I value above all else in another
I have defined what I can't live without in a relationship
I have defined the worst thing(s) a partner could do to me
I have defined what I absolutely won't tolerate
I have dropped all demands on another that I don't demand of myself
I am willing to be in the process of growth with a partner
I am not willing to negotiate on the qualities most important to me

Interactions with Others
I engage only in activities that bring me peace and joy
I no longer engage in activities hoping to meet a partner
I no longer put my best foot forward, I am being me at all times
I never use sexuality, power or money as a way to attract partners
I don't expect everyone to be attracted to me
I no longer require attention from everyone
I don't compare myself to others
I readily participate in activities rather than sitting at home
I surround myself with loving supportive friends
I am building a healthy, vibrant, loving community

New Relationship Patterns
I recognize quickly the types of partners that attracted me in the past
I acknowledge this attraction as a reaction to past patterns
I recognize emotionally available people
I recognize Godly, spiritual people
I recognize people in the process of growth
I recognize kind people
I see people for who they are rather than for who I want them to be
I am attracted to partners who will be good for me
I surround myself with people who will be good for me
I have numerous role models of good relationships around me
I am developing “five-criterion” relationships

Vision and Passion
I am clear about my life dreams
I am living my life to the fullest
I know what type of work I am passionate about and I am doing it
I know what my life purpose is
I know what I contribute to others
I know how I want to spend my time
I know where and how I want to live
I know the legacy I want to leave behind
I have a life mission statement
My personal finances are in order and completely manageable

Personal Faith
I have a personal relationship with God
I am connected with other believers
I have my own spiritual practices—prayer, study, quiet time
I take time for silence and connectedness
I am detached from my own sense of timing, in favor of God’s
I firmly know I will attract the right partner into my life at the right time
I am truly happy and living a full life in the present
I draw my value and worth from God

New Dating Patterns
I am a woman and I allow men to pursue me or I am a man and comfortable taking first steps in a relationship
I stay away from verbal foreplay early in a relationship
I do not engage sexually until I am married
I limit my together time in the beginning of a relationship; I get to know the person slowly
I spend much more time courting in person that I do by phone or email
I am myself at all times in the dating process
I am clear about how I want and don't want to be treated and I communicate those desires to my partner
I do not test my partner
I see my partner for whom he or she is and not for his or her potential
I have fun in the dating/relationship process

Below 50 points: Your may feel frustrated with dating or lack thereof and sometimes think there will never be a relationship for you. You know you need to do some work before you are ready for a relationship.
Make it Happen! :-)
I have read this test before ... it is very good. But, it does prove that I am not ready for a relationship.

I do like the questions; have you forgiven your mother/father? Deep!
That could be a problem with me too. Oops, don't think I've done all my recovery work either.
Make it Happen! :-)
I suspect that we have progressed through recovery farther than we know. My reason for that statement: I believe we are both relatively happy, have adjusted to life as we are in the here and now.

You have to be content in your relationship with yourself before you can include another.
The above test is good. I am glad I came to the realization that I wasn't ready for a relationship years ago. I also realize there are still some things that I need to still do, which is why God still has me single. I am thankful I surrendered to God especially in my relationships because I am so much happier and at peace.
Yes, MandaPanda, we all need to come to that realization and do some recovery work before we get into a serious relationship. If we do that then we have something to give to the relationship. Sadly too many want a relationship so badly that they don't do any work before they get into a serious relationship and then it doesn't work.
Make it Happen! :-)
Yes I have witnessed several of those in my own life and the lives of my friends and family.
It is very sad to see these kinds of marriages break up. We all need to learn that marriage is something you need to work at and not just 'let is happen.' :-(
Make it Happen! :-)
Very true. Nothing is perfect on this earth.
No, nothing is perfect! Sad. :-(
Make it Happen! :-)

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