Here are some quotes to ponder from the recent 2008 Smart Marriages Conference (www.smartmarriages.com).
Dr. Gary Chapman: Many couples love each other but don’t know how to
connect. Sacrificing for one’s spouse is important. When it (a service for your spouse) doesn’t come naturally, it’s actually a greater expression of love. We must learn to speak one another’s love language. [Personal Note: So often this has been true in our own marriage, loving each other, longing for connection, and not knowing how. PAIRS has helped us in this area.]
Dr. John Gray: Men talk to solve problems; women talk to express feelings. [Interesting thought, and probably spot on for the majority of men and women.]
Dennis Stoica (Director, California Healthy Marriage Initiative): Marriage matters to children. Divorce is hard on kids and it is a serious national problem.
Michelle Weiner-Davis: (Founder, Divorce Buster Programs): Real giving means giving what your spouse wants – no matter if you don’t understand it – it’s mutual caring. [Sounds like the Philippians 2 kind of love where you look out for the interest of others like Christ did. Oh so hard to do, but so wonderful when you do.]
Dr. Sue Johnson (Sociologist and author): Without empathy and secure connection there can be no real love. All humans need nurturing, soothing and protection. Key moment which defines forgiveness: when the injured party looks into the eyes of the offender and sees that their pain matters. They have to see it in their faces.
Dr. Steven Stosny (Author and founder of www.compassionworks.com): You can turn your resentful, angry or emotionally abusive relationship into a compassionate, loving one. The urge to improve, appreciate, connect or protect are the motivations of our core values. The experience of value gives you meaning and purpose. Crime goes up when the sense of community goes down. People feel disconnected.