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t h e m o s t i m p o rta n t issue in marriage The number one thing a couple can do for their marriage is make sure that each other has a true and deepening relationship with the Lord Jesus Christ.

get started Who are you? Take turns introducing yourselves and telling three things that best describe who you are. Get connected… ■ After everyone has had a chance to share, read Galatians 6:2 and Romans 12:15. ■

How will staying connected with the other couples in this group help you on your way towards a better marriage? Pass your books around and have each couple write their names, phone numbers and e-mails, if possible, in the spaces provided at the end of the book, on page 102. When you have your book back, take a moment to read over the commitments for this group, found on page 9.

discover truth How you identify yourself has a great influence on your marriage. Every person is driven by the need to satisfy four deep soul needs — needs that define who they are. 1. What are some needs that you think all human beings have?


session 1 Reading for this session… Read Chapters one and two of Marriage on the Rock notes:



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2. How would you define the four needs listed below? a) Acceptance b) Identity c) Security d) Purpose 3. Why do you think God created us with these needs?

4. What are the most common ways people seek to fulfill their deepest needs? a) b) c) d) e) 5. Read Proverbs 28:26, Jeremiah 17:5, and Proverbs 11:28. What are the results if you expect others or things to meet these basic needs? a) Inner security b) Ability to give c) Life atmosphere d) Unrealistic expectations




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6. Read John 6:35. Why does Jesus compare Himself to the basic needs of eating and drinking?

Read Jeremiah 17:7-8, Psalm 125:1, and Proverbs 29:25. What are the results if you turn to Jesus to meet these needs? a) Inner security b) Ability to give c) Life atmosphere d) Realistic expectations Relate and Communicate 1. Read again Proverbs 28:26, Jeremiah 17:5, and Proverbs 11:28. Share an example from your own life of the results of not seeking God to meet your inner needs.

2. Read again Jeremiah 17:7-8, Psalm 125:1, and Proverbs 29:25. Share a personal example of blessing as a result of trusting God to meet your inner needs.

3. Read John 4:1-42. What kind of woman do you think the woman described in this passage was?

4. What does this passage teach you about God’s attitude towards people with failed marriages?





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What does this passage teach you about how marriages can be successful?

Wrap IT Up Recognizing your dependence on anything or anyone other than Jesus can be difficult. Our dependence on other things slips up on us slowly and subtly. Ask yourself these questions honestly, without answering out loud. ■

Do I expect my spouse to make me happy?

What expectations do I put on my spouse to meet needs that only God can meet?

Is my inner joy, peace and fulfillment easily disrupted when things don’t go the way I want, or when people don’t behave the way I think they should? Am I confident that my life is built on knowing who I am in Jesus, and that no matter how people behave or how situations turn out, I am secure?

Talk it out Find a location away from other couples for privacy. 1. Talk about ways to depend more on the Lord to meet your needs. 2. Make a verbal commitment to each other to depend on the Lord, not your spouse, to meet your deepest needs. 3. Ask each other for forgiveness for times when you have put unrealistic expectations upon your spouse that have resulted in hurt and division in your marriage. 4. Conclude by praying for each other to have a deeper walk with the Lord and a greater dependence upon Him 5. Before you leave this evening, set a time and place for you and your spouse to complete the homework session before we meet again. Our Time Date _______________________________ Time _____________________________________________________ Place ____________________________________________________________________________________________




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walk it out Before your time together, review chapters one and two in Marriage on the Rock. If either of you are not sure of where you stand in your personal relationship with Jesus Christ, please take the time to read Appendix I and II in Marriage on the Rock. Begin by praying with each other and then share the following two things: ■

Talk about the spiritual high point of your life.

Tell your spouse one thing that you admire about his or her spiritual life.

Now spend a few minutes answering these questions individually. 1. Are there areas where you have sought fulfillment from someone or something other than God?

2. How has this impacted your marriage?

3. Have you had unrealistic expectations of your spouse in any area?

4. What have been the results of these expectations on your relationship with your spouse?

Share your insights from the above questions with your spouse. Be sure the focus stays on what you have done and not on what your spouse has done. Below is a list of activities that can improve your relationship with God individually and as a couple. Discuss which of these you would be willing to begin doing now or be willing to give more attention. ■

Praying alone

Praying as a couple

Reading, studying and meditating on the Bible




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Reading devotional or theological books

Attending church together


Serving in the church

Going on a retreat

Entering into a discipleship or mentoring relationship

End by taking turns praying for God’s help to keep your individual relationship with Him as the basis for your marriage. For next week read chapter sixteen from Marriage on the Rock. Notes...