That’s a pretty blatant statement, I know. It’s a phrase that I first heard, used by a teacher named Andy Stanley and it stuck with me.
How does the phrase sit with you? What comes to mind when you hear that phrase, “Choosing to Cheat“? I’m sure it depends on where you are in life, at this moment, and your mindset towards this word and act of cheating. Anything from cheating on a test or exam, to cheating on a spouse, no matter how large or small the infraction, cheating is cheating. The devastation of cheating will vary, but the definition doesn’t change -to act unfairly, unfaithfully, or to avoid something undesirable.
Right now, I’m talking about cheating on your spouse; not cheating with another person, but cheating with all the things, people, places, and activities you choose to place before them. Everything you do in life is choice driven. As an individual, you exercise your freedom of choice. Yet, with that freedom comes responsibility; responsibility to your mate.
There should be a hierarchy or priority in your relationship. Who besides God himself should come before your mate? Definitely no other man or woman, or activity should come before your spouse. Yes, you need to work; however boundaries must be set around hours and time spent on the job. We all want to have fun but that doesn’t mean hanging with the fellas or girls having night out when it’s uncomfortable for your mate.
How many date nights with your mate have been postponed because you are too tired from your day’s work? –Choosing to Cheat.
How many volunteer activities have taken away from time your mate wishes to spend with you? –Choosing to Cheat.
Here is the thing with marriage. When you and your mate married, you vowed to one another, that there were certain needs and desires, that only your mate would fulfill for you. For example: if your wife needs your attention and she has vowed to only let you fulfill her need for attention from someone of the opposite sex; are you cheating her when she doesn’t get the attention she needs and deserves? Let’s change roles for a minute. How about a husband who has vowed that his wife will be the only person to fulfill her sexual needs, yet she is always tired because of the long hours spent at work. – Choosing to Cheat.
As husband and wife, you owe each other a certain amount of your time, energy, effort, and attention. If you starve your mate of what they need by choosing to cheat with other “stuff” it won’t take long for your marriage to become malnourished.
Just as you can choose to cheat, you can make a conscious effort, and choose not to cheat. You can nourish your marriage by placing your mate at the top of your priority list. Cheating doesn’t feel good to the person being cheated on. If you love your spouse make a different choice.
Use the 10 inspirational thoughts that follow to help you keep your mate at the top of your list where they belong:
- Talk to your mate and find out what they desire from you. You may be surprised at the request you get.
- Make an EFFORT to meet your mate’s needs that came along with your marriage covenant.
- Remind yourself that you are not irreplaceable on your job. It’s a sobering but true reality.
- Remind yourself that you are irreplaceable in your home.
- Admit that cheating does not have to be a sexual encounter with someone of the opposite sex.
- Realize that cheating can take place with anyone or thing that you place before your spouse, robbing them of a happy life with you. It can be a job, parent, child, ministry responsibility, or your favorite sports activity. Only you and your mate together can determine what this is for you.
- Never become cold or unresponsive to your mate’s needs and desire. Don’t cut them short, hear their heart.
- Take good care of your mate. Be there for each other.
- Become best friends. Let it become harder to spend time apart.
- Decide you are in it to win it and nothing will come between you.
BMWK – Have you ever looked at choosing to cheat from this perspective? I know it’s not a common angle but see how it applies to your relationship and let me know your thoughts. Are there ways you have been choosing to cheat and didn’t even realize it?