~Appreciate Your Spouse~Buoyancy in Marriage~Consult Your Partner~
~Dream Together Part One ~Dream Together Part Two~Empower Your Spouse~
~Have Fun With Your Spouse~Give to One Another~Honor Each Other~Be Intentional~


Restart Button – Matt’s Thoughts

In the Old Testament (Leviticus 25) we read about the year of Jubilee. Land that had been sold to pay debts was returned to its owner and people who sold themselves as servants were set free so that people in desperate situations would not be taken advantage of.  Using a modern day analogy, the restart button was pushed. This was to be practiced every fifty years. In a healthy marriage Jubilee takes place more often than every fifty years.  Usually we call it forgiveness and it must occur often. Forgiveness is a MASSIVE component in marriage. We need to push the restart button, offering Jubilee to our spouse, and we need it pushed for us, receiving Jubilee from our spouse.

Several years ago, I really needed Laura’s Jubilee. I was playing computer games late into the night for many nights. I wasn’t getting the sleep I needed which led to all kinds of consequences that Laura took the brunt of, and more importantly we were not spending the end of the day together connecting with each other. She expressed to me her desire for us to be together more and I agreed, but I was lacking in self-control and did not follow through with my agreement…for waaaaaaaaaaaaay too many nights. This hurt Laura as she felt like I was choosing games over her. She was right, I was choosing games over her, not willfully, but due to immaturity, selfishness and – I’ll be blunt – stupidity.

I hurt my wife and I needed the restart button. Thank you Laura for pushing the restart button. (As a side note, we jointly made a plan that has moved us past those issues.)

The Chosen One – Laura’s Thoughts

Issues with computer games in a marriage may seem petty to some of you who have experienced painful betrayal in areas such as pornography or infidelity. We realized that at the time of our struggle and we realize it now. But the issue remains the same:  I want to be Matt’s chosen one. He wants to be mine.

Anytime you choose something or someone instead of choosing your spouse – you’re making the wrong choice. That’s not what this post is ultimately about, but please hear it loud and clear. Beyond your relationship with the Father, your spouse needs to be your first priority, so let go of yourself and choose your beloved.

That’s exactly what Matt did. He made the decision to grow through his selfish desires – and he chose to put our relationship first. I became his number one again.

But even so, Jubilee didn’t occur until I had truly forgiven the hurt he had caused me by what I had felt as neglect. If Matt had made the changes I asked him to make, and then I had simply shrugged and said, “Well, it’s about time,” our marriage may not be in a much healthier state than it had been.

We had to push the restart button. I had to truly forgive, and together we came up with a plan that worked to grow our healthy marriage. There is no room for bitterness in a marriage that is moving forward toward greatness.

Don’t wait 50 years for Jubilee. Forgiveness starts today.

Ladies, we know you’re reading here more often than the guys. ;)  We’d love husbands to read this article as well. If you feel so inclined please send the link to your husbands, or if it’s easier, we’ve created a downloadable article for you to quickly print off and share.   Healthy Marriage Tips A to Z – Jubilee


  1. Missy says

    Matt and Laura, thank you for sharing this. My hubby and I actually went through the same thing a few years ago. This has been a nice reminder of how far we have come as husband and wife, but – of course – there’s always room for improvement! :) Thanks!


  2. Rebecca P says

    Our Heavenly Father is amazing! I was just talking to Him lastnight about Jubilee, as that is what this year feels like to my husband and I.
    Monday we are filing for bankruptcy, and Saturday we are going to a marriage seminar. We have been through so much the past two years that it took a toll on our marriage. We have both pushed the re-set button, and God is doing big things for us.
    Some may see it as a failure, (having to file and all), but God provided Jubilee and we are being let out of bondage that we could never remove ourselves from.
    I also have to choose to forgive, as burdens have been put on me that I did not choose.
    Thank you for your post this morning, Matt and Laura!


    Jennifer Reply:

    Rebecca, this sounds all too familiar to me. We too have been struggling with the same financial burdens that I did not choose, but I have told my husband what’s done is done and it’s time to move on from there. We have been struggling the past two years and just got hit with another whammy last month when he got laid off. God is good and he is providing for what we “need” but it sure would be nice to unload the burden of the debt. We have not come to the point of bankruptcy yet, but it looms in the horizon. I will be praying for you and your husband for jubilee and renewal!


  3. Kellie Green says

    Thank you for posting this. I am have been having the same problem with my husband for years now. I have e-mailed this to him and hope it will help. God Bless.


  4. Courtney says

    Thank you for your candor in posting about this! We have the same issue in our home. I am experiencing those same feelings that come from my husband choosing to spend his time playing games rather than hanging out with me. His job necessitates him being away from home five days a week, so it is even more hurtful to have the precious little time we have spent that way. I am going to print out your post for him to read and of course I will keep praying about it. Thanks again for sharing so honestly.

    Courtney :)


  5. says

    People feel as if playing computer games is harmless and cannot possibly be a root of a problem. You, many of your readers, and I know all too personally that those games when the player is not self-regulated are indeed a problem. It is no longer an issue in our house (thank you Lord!) but it has been before. Thank you for sharing since I’m sure I’m not the only Christian woman out there who thought she was alone in this. By the way, the title caught my eye; Jubilee is my middle name. :)


  6. Cassy says

    I totally understand… it isn’t petty. My husband has a job that keeps him away for 24-48 hours several times a week. It is so hurtful that he chooses to spend his time with a glowing box instead of with me. His solution is that I learn to play video games with him… this isn’t a workable solution because:
    1) I need sleep (I have two kids and I’m pregnant!)
    2) the games he plays are rated M and frankly I hate to see/hear the trash that’s on them
    3) I stink at video games!
    At the same time I am trying to understand that this is a time for him to unwind from an extremely stressful job. Balance seems to be key… we are still working on it.


  7. c says

    I am trying, but I look at him and think, I CAN’T forgive him. I don’t feel anything has changed. Is this something that I would have to be able to see him actively trying to change before I can forgive? I have gotten stuck in the bad cycle of forgiving people for habits they never drop then I get disappointed and frustrated again. Any advise here would be greatly appreciated, because I do want to have a loving and fair relationship, but do not see any point in forgiving if there is little or no effort on their part to help the situation. Maybe I’m just to irritable, because I too am pregnant and feel like I’m unable to bring the best family life to my children. Thank you.


    Laura Reply:

    I feel your pain on this. It is so hard to forgive when the person isn’t changing their behavior. I think in cases like this, you work TOWARD forgiveness, as in, you don’t let bitterness creep into your heart and you continue to pray for God to change his heart toward doing what he needs to do. Praying for you… :)


  8. jill says

    Wow, great post! I will definitely show this to my husband. I’m like the last poster, it’s very hard to forgive when you know it will happen again, or continue on. That is the case here, with hundreds of issues, yes hundreds. I’ve been praying a lot more instead of just seething, or having bitterness. Very difficult but my goal for a couple of years now has been the word “trust”. I’m working hard to trust God to help get me through these problems. Just when I think things are getting better, something else comes along. In fact, if I even share a few of these with people they wonder why I haven’t done myself in so to speak. Yes, at one time I even considered that an option. But God has other plans for my life.
    For the record, I’m not young like most of you. I never had all this information and support at a younger age. I think it’s great that we can go online and find out we are not the only one having these problems. I was married when I was 18, in 1975, yeah, I’ll do the math for you. I’m 54, and have been married for 35 years.
    Before computers we had a lot of time for each other/family. Cooking together, playing board games, dancing around to music, and well, whatever came our way, it was always something fun and sometimes unusual.


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