I like to follow posts that appear on the FamilyLife webpage. I keep some of them handy because I find them to be especially useful. One particularly good post on communication that first appeared in 2005 was titled 5 Communication Tools That Saved My Marriage. It was written by Rob Flood.
The five key principles highlighted by Flood were these:
1. The Principle of First Response: The course of a conflict is not determined by the person who initiates, but by the person who responds.
2. The Principle of Physical Touch: It is difficult to sin against someone while you are tenderly touching him or her.
3. The Principle of Proper Timing: The success of a conversation can be maximized if the timing of the conversation is carefully chosen.
4. The Principle of Mirroring: Understanding can be enhanced if we measure it often throughout a conversation.
5. The Principle of Prayer: Success in communication is more likely when we invite God to be an active participant and guide.
I found these principles to be in line with God’s guidance for our relationships. Keep them in mind in your communication and you’ll certainly benefit. These will be especially helpful in marriage. To see a further explanation of these five principles go to FamilyLife’s website and do a search for the title.
In closing, I’d like to bring special emphasis to the fifth principle. If you and the person with whom you are communicating will practice regular time with Jesus FIRST in your daily life, the probability of success in your communication increases exponentially. Daily read God’s Word together. Join in prayer to Jesus for His free forgiveness and wise guidance every day. Be at peace in the arms of Jesus as you both lay your concerns on Him before you go to sleep every night. I’m not just flippantly throwing out those words “daily, every day and every night.” It DOES make a difference when you keep your “thumb up” to Jesus EVERY DAY! It will pay off tremendously when those crucial points of communication arise. It may even save your marriage.