by John and Ruth Greene
If you have other decent and respectful relationships with other people, but not in your marriage, do you have a toxic relationship?
In the world that we live in today, most people probably buy the seductive illusion that the problem always rests with the other person. This same ‘rule of thumb’ has come to apply in marriage as well. In a modern world full of ‘sociopathic,’ if not ‘pychopathic’ behavior, accountability for personal behavior is conveniently passed on to others with little self-examination or application. (James 1:22-25) What is worse is the same illusion tends to repeat itself in a self-fulfilling prophecy. This illusion also ignores the fact that each couple in marriage is unique. A marriage relationship also demands more from you than any other relationship in your life.
In a world full of blame, what you blame your mate for is often a reflection of yourself that you need to deal with very badly, but often refuse to. Your heart and mind have become toxic in a very real way. The roots of fear, rejection and bitterness are firmly installed from previous relationships and life experiences. The problem is that continuing to carry these roots of deception carries them into your future where they will continue to taint and tarnish your future relationships and the rest of your life. The roots of this bitterness are grounded in fear. Failing to take notice of the fear in your life results in the continued growth of this fear in your heart, a vicious cycle of attack by Satan and an aligned a system of man. You are afraid of dealing with intimate relationships, which will also carry on in the future, even into the next generation. Attitudes of the flesh continue to fill your heart and mind, crowding out the fruit of YHWH’s Spirit and the ability to abide with Messiah through the Holy Spirit. (“Modern Society and Obsolete Marriage“; “The Modern Life Culture Crisis“; “Intimacy In Marriage“)
In the closest of relationships, blaming your mate isn’t the answer. In fact, blame isn’t the solution at all. Consider that your marriage union is a special garden in your life where your trust in YHWH is directly involved. This special union is designed to be threefold, between a couple and their Heavenly Father. When this is not the case, the union is automatically weakened, which is exactly where most of the world resides. (“Divorce: Modern Family & the Authority of Law“)
When you have a weed in a real garden, a good gardener would try to be rid of the weed by pulling it out. A gardener can momentarily miss some weeds that have especially tenacious roots, or more often, the gardener neglects the garden for other matters that seem more pleasurable or more pressing. When the soil is dry and hard, the roots are difficult, if not impossible to remove. You need something to soften the soil so that you can pull the plant out completely. The same is true of the soil of your heart. (“Spiritual Fruit & Renewing Your Mind“; “Secession of the Heart“)
The only way to remove a tenacious weed is by soaking the soil with water until the soil is soft and loose enough for the soil to release the root. If the weed has a deep tap root, a lot of water and patience may well be required. The same is true in your heart. You need the living water of YHWH’s Word, the Bible, and a living relationship with the Most High to cleanse the heart of the weeds in your life, as you cleanse the filters of your mind, which allows the weeds in your heart. (“Prospering Your Family“; “The Miracle of Living Water“)
When the weeds of resentment and bitterness reside in the heart, especially in an intimate relationship, each mate may witness or visualize the weeds in the heart of the other. The temptation is to quickly remove or to somehow poison the weeds in the heart of your mate. Your focus becomes your mate instead of yourself. Nagging and fighting is a common response to this kind of approach. Experience also proves that this kind of approach always fails. The world is full of the evidence, the broken relationships and the ruined lives, as this pervasive behavior continues to try to fill your heart with more weeds.
Through washing with the water of YHWH’s Word, you look inward to see and acknowledge your own bitterness, resentments, envy and jealousy.
You make a personal decision, a choice to allow the cleansing of your heart, allowing the Word of your Heavenly Father to flow into your heart, with the willingness to release the roots of these weeds.
Finally, you water the soil of your marriage relationship with kindness and mercy, the fruitage of Elohim’s [YHWH] Spirit. You apply this to your mate and to yourself. You forgive yourself for this error of delusion and continue seeking to refine Elohim’s living water in your heart. Over time, your heart is cleansed of the weeds that clutter your marriage garden and the depths of your heart. (“Breaking the Strongholds of Egypt and Canaan in Your Heart“)
“And I say: ‘Walk in the Spirit,’ and you shall not accomplish the lust of the flesh. For the flesh lusts against the Spirit, and the Spirit against the flesh. And these are opposed to each other, so that you do not do what you desire to do.
But if you are led by the Spirit, you are not under Torah. And the works of the flesh are well-known, which are these: adultery, whoring, uncleanness, indecency, idolatry, drug sorcery, hatred, quarrels, jealousies, fits of rage, selfish ambitions, dissensions, factions, envy, murders, drunkenness, wild parties, and the like – of which I forewarn you, even as I also said before, that those who practise such as these shall not inherit the reign of Elohim.
But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, trustworthiness, gentleness, self-control. Against such there is no Torah. And those who are of Messiah have impaled the flesh with its passions and the desires. If we live in the Spirit, let us also walk in the Spirit.” – Galatians 5:16-25, ISR98
The work of YHWH’s living water is not a quick fix. When the soil of your heart has become encrusted and hardened, that soil does not respond with a fast flush. The same is true in your marriage relationship, the special relationship garden in your life. When the roots of Satan’s weeds are deep in your heart and your mind is twisted through the perversion of the world, time is required, along with commitment to keep weeds out. The fruit of the Father’s love must replace the weeds of the enemy. By walking in the Spirit of YHWH, following the Messiah and through the power of the Holy Spirit, you are able to remove the tools of the enemy. (Proverbs 10:22; “What Is Washing By The Word?“)
“But in the same way, the Spirit also helps our frailty, for we have not known what to pray to Elohim for, according to what is necessary. To the contrary, the Spirit Himself makes intercession for our sake, with groaning that cannot be uttered, now searching the heart, having known what is in the mind of the spirit, concerning making intercession for the sanctified in the manner of Elohim, and having known that all fellow workers, for the benefit of those that love Elohim, being the appointed, exposed before Elohim to His more excellent purpose.” – Romans 8:26-28, direct translation
As disciples of the Messiah, each must banish the roots of footholds and strongholds that aren’t of YHWH. Each mate must learn respect for one another, replacing fear with courage and love. Instead of digging up the past and throwing it at one another, the anointed of YHWH root out the past through the washing of the YHWH’s living water. The marriage bond is purified and strengthened through the power of the Most High through Yahshua [Jesus] and the Holy Spirit. The ugliness of darkness is replaced with the beauty of Elohim’s light. Having a toxic marriage relationship is a result of neglect and the fruit of the kingdom of darkness. Through our Heavenly Father, who strengthens us, each disciple of Messiah can be free from the toxicity of the world, abiding in the strength of the Master through the power of the Holy Spirit. In this way, disciples of Messiah continue to grow spiritually abiding in the Spirit of YHWH, developing the ultimate in brotherly relationships, a marriage bond established by the Most High. (“Disease & Spiritual Roots“; “The Abomination That Causes Desolation“)
You don’t have long to make a decision about your life and lifestyle, and then to begin to press that decision into real action. You and I are in the tribulation times. If you continue to follow traditions of men and do not listen to the Word of YHWH, you have a major problem. (Deuteronomy 12:30-32; Matthew 15:3, 8-10; 2 Peter 3:3-4; Acts 13:41; Matthew 24:12-15)