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[The following is an excerpt from a FREE PDF book on forgiveness that’s yours just for the asking!]

Is there a particular person with whom you simply don’t interact, someone you can’t stand, someone for whom the mere mention of their name stands the hair up on the back of your neck?

Did they hurt you?

Reject you?

Take advantage of you?

Ignore you?

Humiliate you?

Slander you?

Steal something from you?

Withhold something they owed you?

Betray you?

Do you think you’ll never be able to forgive them?

Well, what if I told you that if you can’t forgive them your chances of enjoying a healthy life-giving marriage drop precipitously? This is true for at least two reasons:

  • Despite your best intentions, you’ll bring that buried bitterness into marriage.
  • It’s likely one day your future marriage partner will hurt you just as much.

Let’s address each of those assertions individually.

Bitterness is NOT Biodegradable

Despite your best intentions, you’ll bring that buried bitterness into marriage.

Consider what happens when you bury nuclear waste. It poisons the ground in which you bury it. Which then poisons the water in that ground. Which then poisons the plants that grow in that ground. Which then poisons the animals that feed off those plants. And as time carries on the contamination spreads.

Bitterness is just like that. We’d like to imagine its biodegradable, but it’s not. Indeed…

Not only does bitterness not just go away, when improperly handled it poisons everything it comes into contact with; not immediately, but eventually.

Indeed, the fact that unforgiveness works so gradually makes it all the more deadly since its pollution is permitted to proliferate undetected until it has spread far beyond simple containment.

However, what if you could handle the toxin of unforgiveness in such a way as to prevent contamination? Then you’d know a life you were meant to live. Not just healthy, but free and full of peace, joy and hope. This is what I want to help you discover in this book.

Nobody’s Perfect

It’s likely one day your future marriage partner will hurt you just as much.

Many starry-eyed lovers couldn’t possibly imagine their beloved hurting them at all, much less hurting them as much as they’d been hurt in the past by less noble individuals.

Sadly, many divorcees felt the same way back when they were starry-eyed lovers.

I tell singles, “You think your parents hurt you? Wait until you get married!”

They look at me like I just swore. How could I even say that?

Well regardless of whatever offense you’ve endured at the hands of your parents you could comfort yourself with the expectation that you weren’t going to live with mom and dad forever. That hopeful future departure didn’t make their actions any less egregious, but it did make them less overwhelming. You knew you had a way out some day.

But when your future spouse commits the exact same transgression (or different ones that hurt just as much), you know they do it with the full knowledge that you are stuck with them. That trapped feeling magnifies the trauma you experience. And to ease that pain, spouses consider the same solution they turned to back home.  They look for a way out of the relationship; only in marriage there isn’t suppose to be any. This makes the same wound hurt more.

You’ve probably already realized “nobody’s perfect,” but the truth is much darker than that. Apart from Christ, we’re all just a stone’s throw away from unimaginable selfishness, pride and greed.

It’s funny, when you think about it. Hardly anyone has an idyllic impression of their family. To the contrary, most people can tell you everything they don’t like about their parents and siblings and can recount many ways they’ve been wronged by them. However, most of those same people expect to find a soul mate out there somewhere that will fit them like yoga pants. (Well even spandex can chafe.)

That said…

If two people marry with the commitment and capacity to forgive each and every offense no matter what, it’s guaranteed they won’t divorce.

In fact, it’s a good bet they’ll have a truly life-giving marriage. This is the kind of marriage I want to help you prepare for right now.

[The post above is an excerpt from Forgiveness 101, a FREE PDF book that’s yours just for the asking! Simply email us here. and we’ll send you a digital copy pronto. Want to read the rest of the intro first? Click here! Want to hear the story of a life God changed through the Biblical truths shared in this book? Click here! Freedom might be just a click away! (Plus 70 pages, but that’s not a very long book now, is it?)]

DNA: It’s What’s For Dating

Dug this weekend’s DNA? Be a good friend and share with your friends on the social media platform of choice: Instagram, Youtube, Facebook, or Twitter.

The LoveEd discipleship series, Beyond Sex & Salvation, will empower you to prepare for relational success when it counts: BEFORE you fall in love!

It’s NOT for couples, but for any wise individual who thinks they might want to get married sometime before they die. And would like to learn how to better build healthy relationships in the meantime.

Check out all three study guides in our store. You can walk through them on your own, but it’s more fun with friends (that and it kinda makes sense to grow in relational success in actual relationships with others), so consider putting together an FMU LoveEd small group study.

Even better? And ask a rock star married couple you respect to lead it!