Avoid Miscommunication

How can we avoid the miscommunication traps that are so destructive in marriage?

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Overview

Have you ever had one of those marital conflicts that leaves you completely befuddled, wondering, “What in the world was that all about?!” Perhaps it started with a stray comment about a pencil sharpener, an opinion about lasagna, or a remark about the weather. Then, before you knew it, you and your spouse were verbally duking it out like sworn enemies, glaring and discussing faults and feelings until the sun went down.

What really went wrong? Why is it so difficult to get along in marriage? Why do so many arguments start over seemingly silly things? How are we to live out our marriage vows in the midst of flawed communication efforts? What does it really mean to understand our partner’s intent and seek understanding? Let’s take a look.

Table of Contents

SCRIPTURE: Matthew 20:20–28; Philippians 2:1–11; James 3:13–18

LEADER'S GUIDE

    • Identify the Current Issue

    • Discover the Eternal Principles

Teaching point one: The root of the problem is our focus on self.
Teaching point two: To avoid marital missteps, we should try to clarify what our spouse is really saying.
Teaching point three: We should seek to understand our spouse before seeking to be understood.
    • Apply Your Findings

    • Additional Resources

ARTICLE FROM MARRIAGE PARTNERSHIP

    • Avoiding Missteps and Misunderstandings, by Les and Leslie Parrott (Fall 2005, 4 printed pages)

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