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Honor@Home: Building Trust

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Every loving relationship is founded upon trust. Trust generates harmony. It is the cornerstone in which lasting relationships are constructed. A healthy relationship requires a common desire to trust and to be trusted by one another. It takes time, absolute honesty, willingness to forgive, and acceptance of personal failures to keep trust in a marriage relationship. If you want to build a strong foundation of trust, you need to know what is required. The potency of a relationship depends particularly on trust.

The first building block to foster trust in your relationship is to have absolute and honest communication with your partner.  We all have made mistakes in over committing or making promises that we were not able to keep. People that count on us get very upset and disappointed when we neglect to keep our promises. The best policy in making promises is to properly communicate our commitments to avoid setting the wrong expectations. We must be precise in expressing our promises. We also need to realize the conditional factors of a promise. Instead of making declarative statements, create room for conditional ones. If you say, “I promise that I will never…,” over time you may be tested and possibly fail miserably at something you promised never to do. Instead, you may want to say, “I promise my best to do…”  Always provide action to back your promises. Do not act like a politician when making promises.  Do not commit to something that you know deep down that you are not totally committed to nor willing to do.

Second, trust is linked to loyalty. Your moral integrity depends on the conduct you exhibit with the opposite sex in public and in private. For instance, if you enjoy spending time and having conversations with someone who you have become attracted to, you are more likely than not headed in the wrong direction. Are you daydreaming or fantasizing about people other than your spouse? This is a dangerous sign. Do you spend time surfing the internet while your spouse is sleeping? It is possible that you might end up compromising your loyalty by watching illicit content. People also listen to the way you express yourself about your spouse at work or other public places; therefore, you should not criticize your partner with other people. First of all, not many people will really care about your complaints and secondly your spouse will be exposed to judgement by others.    

Openness between you and your spouse about finances is another factor in building trust in your relationship. When it comes to money, people are usually very sensitive.  Hidden financial agendas is the second most common cause for divorce. The way we manage money is a clear indication of what we value. Jesus said, “For where your treasure is, there will your heart be also.” (Matthew 6:21). If you really want to build your relationship on trust, you must have an open policy about finances. Some couples opt to divide personal finances in order to avoid tension or hide motives. This strategy usually does more damage than good. Vitalized couples usually have a common and sensible agreement to keep financial disclosures open between the two of them. This approach removes potential doubts about future financial moves and planning.

Another key area where trust is fostered is our family priorities. Once you leave your father and mother to start a new family, a continuous alignment of priorities must be maintained. Family should come before friends and your career. However, there will be times where these conflict with one another. Most of the career decisions I have made over my lifetime, I tried my best to place my family first. Nevertheless, there were conflicting moments when it was difficult to choose. My wife and children have really benefited every time I selected their well-being as what is most important. I quickly realized that it was about them and no decision was made without taking every family member in consideration. Today, I’m reaping the blessings of placing my family in the correct priority.

In summary, it is the little things that add up in building trust. It takes years to build, but only a moment to destroy it. If you want to build a trusting relationship with your spouse, start by placing your hope and trust in God first.

The heart of her husband doth safely trust in her,

so that he shall have no need of spoil.

She will do him good and not evil

all the days of her life. Proverbs 31:11-12

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