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In this week’s episode of Marriage Matters, Andy and Jo are focusing on communication in marriage – healthy communication, misunderstandings, and arguments - the good, the bad and the ugly!

Let’s be honest, we all make mistakes, say the wrong thing, raise our voices and so on…join Andy and Jo as they share their experiences; being honest about an incident involving a cushion!

#RealTalk – What did you say?

This week is wrapped around scripture to keep us on the right track when it comes to communicating with our spouses, starting with wholesome, healthy, good communication - a very good place to start - and end!

Andy and Jo are not afraid to admit that things go wrong in marriages, that they have misunderstood one another from time to time – it happens!

Let’s face it, folks, we all bring our own personal, cultural, family expectations and experiences to the marriage and we all bring our own ‘baggage’ – hang-ups, issues, you name it we bring it to the marriage table.

And of course, there is the male and female differences that we bring, not that Andy and Jo stereotype, but it goes without saying that this is added to the equation in our marriages.

Join Andy and Jo as they discuss what we say to each other in marriages – sometimes it’s not what you say, it’s how you say it!

Tips and Resources

Try and focus on the pain that your spouse is trying to express, rather than the sometimes, inadequate, or hurtful words being spoken.

Give you spouse a way out by talking about how what they say or do makes you feel; don’t say ‘you’ did this and ‘you’ did that. Instead, say’ When this happens, this makes me feel ….’ Share your hurts, be honest, gentle, and kind in your approach – in your communication – non-verbal and verbal.

Some Scriptures to meditate on

Proverbs 17:28 (NLT)

Even fools are thought wise when they keep silent. With their mouths shut, they seem intelligent.

Proverbs 12:15 (NLT)

Fools think their own way is right, but the wise listen to others.

Proverbs 18:2 (NLT)

Fools have no interest in understanding; they only want to air their own opinions.

Proverbs 15:1 (NLT)

A gentle answer deflects anger, but harsh words make tempers flare.

Proverbs 29:20 (NLT)

There is more hope for a fool than for someone who speaks without thinking.

Proverbs 21:23 (NLT)

Watch your tongue and keep your mouth shut, and you will stay out of trouble.


Read Song of Songs, chapter 4.

Meditate on Song of Songs 4 v 9-10.

You have captured my heart, my treasure, my bride. You hold it hostage with one glance of your eyes, with a single jewel of your necklace.

Andy and Jo


Jo 0:40 Hello, and welcome to Marriage matters. My name's Jo.

Andy 0:43 And I'm Andy B.

Jo 0:44 And we're glad you could join us for our third episode. If you want to know what we're doing and keep up with what we're doing, do like us on Facebook, subscribe to our YouTube channel and sign up to the website

Andy 0:59 Which means something really exciting now.

Jo 1:01 Why?

Andy 1:02 Well, because now there's a newsletter. So, if you want to know what we're doing, and we're talking about communication today, so this is quite relevant and pertinent.

Jo 1:10 Yeah

Andy 1:11 Sometimes social media might be accused of not communicating everything that you want to hear and see. So to bypass that potential issue, what we've done is created a newsletter.

Andy 1:23 So if you go onto the website, you go on to the Newsletter page, which you can find in the menus, and then you can add your email, and your name, and say, Hello, it's me, I want to have your newsletter, please. And we'll send it to you once a month.

Jo 1:35 Fantasti!. Yeah, so lots of ways to stay in touch and keep up with what we're doing.

Jo 1:39 So marriage matters is all about marriage. Us sharing our experiences, and taking a journey with you, to look into different aspects. And today it's communication, isn't it?

Andy 1:51 Yes. Just checking.

Jo 1:53 Yeah,

Jo 1:54 So what have we got?

Andy 1:55 We did talk about that this

Jo 1:56 We did. What have we got then?

Andy 1:57 We communicated!

Jo 1:59 You've got some scripture haven't you?

Andy 2:00 We have! So ,Ephesians chapter 4. verse

Jo 2:05 25, to 27?

Andy 2:07 We did write this down. I keep forgetting.

Andy 2:10 "Therefore, each of you must put off full set and speak truthfully to his neighbour for we are all members of one body. In your anger do not sin. Do not let the sun go down while you are still angry. And do not give the devil a foothold"

Jo 2:26 Ooh, strong words there!

Andy 2:29 Anger leads to sin, leads to the devil. That's a nice little

Jo 2:32 Wow!

Andy 2:33 You know when you when you are introducing something, it's supposed to be nice and gentle isn't it?

Jo 2:37 Yeah

Andy 2:37 We can't be bothered

Jo 2:40 Yeah, I mean anger is, is problematic, isn't it? And we shouldn't go down on, go to bed on our anger should we

Andy 2:46 No

Jo 2:46 We've got to deal with these issues. So yeah.

Andy 2:48 We've had a few late night chats holding that one.

Jo 2:50 Yeah, trying to Yeah, absolutely. But yeah, that is really key. Communication, is is is no you don't want anger in there. Well, I mean, anger is not wrong in itself. It's just that you need to deal with it and not sin, isn't it was the scripture tells you.

Andy 3:04 Anger's gonna happen. It's what you did with it. Is it righteous anger or not?

Jo 3:08 Yeah. We do have heated arguments. And emotions can get, what's the word?

Andy 3:15 Heightened

Jo 3:17 Yeah

Andy 3:17 Sometimes things come out of your mouth that you wish you hadn't said.

Jo 3:20 And I'm sure we've all got stories to tell of those experiences. And so we want to sort of take a trip into that world.

Andy 3:29 Take a trip to see good communication.

Jo 3:31 Yeah, see if we can, if we can help

Andy 3:33 Shall we take a break with some Dave?

Jo 3:35 Yeah.

Jo 3:51 How do people talk to you normally? Do they talk in burning Bushes?

Dave the Dog 3:55 Sit

Jo 3:55 Sit

Dave the Dog 3:55 Fetch

Jo 3:56 Fetch.

Dave the Dog 3:57 Do you know what I say back?

Jo 3:59 What do you say back?

Dave the Dog 4:00 You chuck the stick? Get it yourself.

Jo 4:08 Dave, are you there?

Dave the Dog 4:10 Ar, I'm here, ar!

Jo 4:12 Hello, Dave. Oh, I think we've got the same problem as last week. I can't see you.

Dave the Dog 4:16 Have you opened your eyes?

Jo 4:17 Yes I've opened my eyes.

Jo 4:24 You name it. He could play it.

Dave the Dog 4:27 Pipe organ.

Jo 4:28 Pipe organ. Yeah, with all those button.

Dave the Dog 4:30 Lots of buttons like a spaceship

Jo 4:32 Spaceship.

Jo 4:33 Yeah, you're looking good. Have you done something to your hair?

Dave the Dog 4:37 I had my hair sorted.

Jo 4:38 You had your hair sorted?

Dave the Dog 4:38 I went to the dog groomers.

Jo 4:40 Brilliant. You look great. Good to see you.

Jo 4:48 Do you know what your name means, Dave?

Dave the Dog 4:51 Dave!

Jo 4:52 Dave. It just means Dave. Well I looked it up and it's short for David and it means Beloved. That means your lovable.

Dave the Dog 5:00 Long for duh.

Jo 5:01 Long for duh.

Jo 5:08 Big long stick to help him protect his sheep. You like sticks?

Jo 5:42 Welcome back there was some really good humour there from Dave the Dog.

Andy 5:44 A but of brevity

Jo 5:45 Yeah, absolutely. 'Cos we started on quite a difficult subject of anger. And how we need to be really careful. And communication is a very difficult subject. We've been talking in other episodes about how two people are becoming as one. You know, we've suddenly got two people are living a life together, sharing a life together. I mean, communication is key in all relationships. But if you are with someone, not all the time, but a lot more time than you would be with your work colleagues, or another member of the family, you know, the tempers may gets frayed, there are gonna be situations. And so you do really need to learn to communicate well.

Andy 6:19 Yes

Jo 6:19 In that close proximity. And emotions can get high can't they.

Andy 6:23 I heard it once described as 'you need to learn to argue well'. Which I thought, well, that's a bit bad, isn't it? You shouldn't be trying to argue. But, actually, learning to argue well is quite good.

Jo 6:31 Yeah. I mean, I think, I think arguing is healthy. You know, you want

Andy 6:37 Disagreeements are good!

Jo 6:37 Yeah to absolutely, so there's nothing wrong with that. And there's nothing wrong with anger in and of itself.

Andy 6:41 We don't want cancel culture in marriages.

Jo 6:43 It's healthy. I mean it shows you, you care about things, you're passionate, you want to get your point across. But yeah, there's a healthy way to argue, that would be good.

Andy 6:52 I fell in love with your passion, which is great. But there's a slight other side to that passion, which is you can get passionate about things I don't want you to be passionate about.

Jo 6:59 Yeah, that's it, isn't it? Yeah. Have you got some more scripture there> Is it James 1, 19.

Andy 7:05 Yeah, I was calling about through the Ephesians one.

Jo 7:07 OK

Andy 7:07 And then jump to James. So yeah, this is Ephesians 4 again.

Andy 7:11 "Therefore, each of you must put off falsehood and speak truthfully to his neighbour, boy, for we are all members of one body. In your anger, do not sin. Do not let the sun go down while you are still angry, and do not give the devil a foothold."

Andy 7:26 And then we'll skip on to James, chapter 1. And where?

Jo 7:31 Number 19.

Andy 7:32 Thank you.

Andy 7:33 "My dear brothers, take note of this, everyone should be quick to listen, slow to speak, and slow to become angry. For man's anger does not bring about the righteous life that God desires. Therefore, get rid of all moral filth, and the evil that is so prevalent and humbly accept the word grounded in you, which can save you."

Jo 7:53 Wow. I guess if we had that scripture in the fronts of our mind, we may change the way we argue or talk to one another.

Andy 8:01 Yes. I have a disagreement with you. But I love you anyway. Might be a little bit false, but it'd be better.

Jo 8:06 Yeah, I mean, communication is complicated. And we bring different cultures, different experiences, from our own upbringing down we into the marriage. Two people coming together. Baggage, we often call it don't we, especially if it's negative stuff. But you know? We're all different. Aside from the fact that it's male and female? You know, and there are differences? Yeah.

Andy 8:27 I mean, just jumping in on that one. How many times have you asked me a question which I've responded, with a solution, for you to say, 'but I wasn't asking you to tell me what to do. I just wanted to talk to you'.

Andy 8:38 There's a difference between men and women. Pretty much. It's a generalisation, but it's fairly accurate that you, you want to talk at me about something but I take it that you're talking with me. Therefore, you want a response. And because I love you, I want to give you the solution to the problem, 'cos that's kind of how I'm wired. And most men would be fairly similar. There's one. There's a communication flaw,

Jo 9:00 Different ways of communicating, absolutely, that might cause problems.

Andy 9:03 Yes.

Jo 9:04 And as I say, our upbringing is different. So, whether we're from different parts of the country, or the world, that can bring into it, its own sort of experiences, But, also, expectations. You know, our experience of of marriage. Our experience of our own family. How? Who does what? Where? And, and expectations and you know, and we may not have communicated them. Not because we deliberately didn't. We just didn't know that that was something we needed to know.

Andy 9:28 And how often does it happen in in a normal relationship? Going to the supermarket and you go in with your baggage, because, I don't mean bags, I mean actual baggage. Emotional baggage. Because the last time he went the person who packed the bags, that you didn't want to pack your bags, for you because you're quite capable, thanks very much, squashed you bananas under a bunch of tins. So you go in with a bit of an expectation of 'well I'm gonna make sure that doesn't happen again'. You're going in with baggage. As fickle as as, as light hearted an example that is, it can be an issue, and we can go with, with, with an attitude which is unfair. Bbut how much more so in a vulnerable relationship like a marriage? How much more so when you're tired? Or when you're in a vulnerable relationship, vulnerable in a healthy way?

Jo 10:12 Yep.

Andy 10:12 Like a healthy marriage should be. You should be vulnerable to one another. That's a very biblical way of looking at it.

Andy 10:17 But in, in the marriage relationship, that vulnerability means you can be hurt. And, you know, we think it's very easy to think of sexual baggage, but there's emotional baggage. There's a communication baggage, and there's mental baggage., And all this skip's-worth of stuff that we drag into our relationship, which we really shouldn't.

Jo 10:34 Yeah, I mean, Jesus came up with the answer to all this wasn't it? It's, it's forgiveness, isn't it?

Jo 10:39 77, 70, 7 times seven?

Andy 10:42 Lots of sevens

Jo 10:42 Yeah, I mean

Andy 10:43 The point is infinitely.

Jo 10:44 Yeah, it's absolutely key that we don't keep a record of wrongs, isn't it? It says, there's actually, oh is it 1 Corinthians 13? It's that lovely passage about love that often is read at weddings, actually. And it tells you what love is. Love is patient. Love is kind and those things. And sometimes that can go out the window when you have an argument. But that is really, really key.

Andy 11:04 Love is patient, love is kind

Jo 11:07 But yeah, that forgiveness isn't it, does not keep a record of wrongs. And oh, how many times we have 'what have you done? You did that last time?' And oh, there's nothing worse is there then someone keeps throwing back what you did yesterday, or maybe a few years ago?

Andy 11:19 The great thing about being married for 25 years is I know so much about you. The bad thing about being married to you for so long is you know everything about me.

Jo 11:25 It works both ways.

Andy 11:27 So there's a flip side to the coin.

Jo 11:29 Yeah, that, that's interesting, isn't it? Yeah. And we shouldn't use things against each other. But in the heat of the moment, and if we're just not feeling the love, or we're just in a bad mood, or tired, or whatever.

Andy 11:42 I'll be honest, I'm really bad at hearing you say something and holding you to what you've said, even though I know you didn't mean it. "Yes, but you said this".

Andy 11:50 "Yeah but I didn't mean that."

Andy 11:51 "Yes. But you said it, the words came out of your mouth, therefore, you must have meant it at one point."

Andy 11:55 "But I just wanted to hurt you."

Andy 11:56 "Yes. But you said these words."

Andy 11:58 And we can go around in cycles of 'but you said'

Jo 12:00 Yeah.

Andy 12:01 And actually, it's it's a really valuable lesson in any relationship.

Jo 12:04 Do you want me to sing the Frozen song? Let it go.

Andy 12:08 Yeah, I have a little twitch on that one.

Andy 12:10 But I'm just, I'm terrible. If I hear, I take people at face value. That's how I work, always, in my life. And I take everybody at face value, and that's how I treat people. So when you say something, I believe you!

Jo 12:21 Yeah, I mean, that's, that's the interesting about being married isn't that you get to know each other, and how we kind of tick. And how you might be in the morning.

Andy 12:29 Tick or twitch, Sometimes I'm not sure.

Jo 12:31 And we get used to these little nuances, and the way, and I just love it when a couple have been together for a long time, they don't have to talk to each other because they're just, it's not that they've got nothing to say. It's just they're comfortable in each other's presence, aren't they?

Andy 12:42 Yeah, we don't always talk. Sometimes you'll pray, and I won't pray. Because you've prayed exactly the prayer that I was gonna pray

Jo 12:47 Yeah

Andy 12:48 In a way that I can't add to that.

Jo 12:50 And communication isn't just about talking is it?

Andy 12:53 Is it not?

Jo 12:54 No. It's listening, obviously. But it's also it's those nonverbals isn't it? I mean, so much can be said without actually saying anything. It's the eyebrow or the, you know, the head down. There's lots of nonverbals that we can give each other.

Andy 13:09 Silence.

Jo 13:09 Ooh.

Andy 13:10 That,s it's a song, there's a song by Skillet. And one of the lines I always get wrong, is amazing. It's about a hurricane of silence or something. Which is amazing. How how silence can be so painful.

Jo 13:20 Yeah.

Andy 13:20 And so hurtful. And so

Jo 13:21 Yeah.

Andy 13:22 Lots of things it shouldn't be. And we can be silent just to hurt people. So yeah,

Jo 13:26 I mean, I mean, it's difficult. If things do get out of hand, you do need some space, some silence, some, you know, regroup if you're like. Let's let's, let's figure this out. Maybe go off and pray or spend some time, you know, just reflecting or thinking about how best to get through to the next stage.

Andy 13:44 How many times have we had the "Do you wanna pray about this?"

Andy 13:47 "Yeah alright"

Jo 13:48 Yeah

Andy 13:49 You know, we pray about it together and, and work it through. But it's good to go off and have some moments just to pause, to go and repent, and say, God, I've failed, I've screwed up, please help me.

Jo 13:59 Yeah.

Andy 13:59 Because one of the things that I'm very conscious of, is how much I love you, and how much you love me. And, because we're in a really healthy marriage, when it goes wrong, I have to trust that you still love me, and you still have good intentions for me. But it's easy when you're tired to

Jo 14:14 Yeah

Andy 14:14 Chuck it out the window

Jo 14:15 I mean that's, that's the basis of a good relationship. It's trust isn't it? You need to have that trust, and, but even when you do have all these good things they, they'll, they'll, things still go wrong. And so we need to listen to one another. What is it we talk about? There's two ears and one mouth.

Andy 14:31 But, there's two eyes and a nose, with two nostrils, so we're back on maths again.

Jo 14:36 But it is. There's a lot of listening, isn't there, that needs to be done? And they do say, a lot of Proverbs and things about how it's best to listen and to actually shut up.

Andy 14:45 We've got some Proverbs later.

Jo 14:46 Yeah, that's coming up.

Andy 14:47 In our tips section.

Jo 14:48 Yeah.

Andy 14:49 So you have an example of it going wrong.

Jo 14:51 Oh, yeah, yeah, well, we,

Andy 14:53 Miscommunication, this is a long time ago,

Jo 14:56 Lots of arguments happen, don't they? And often people will say that they don't even know what got it started. And I don't know if I can remember what got started this argument. But, and we were quite young in our marriage, I mean.

Andy 15:08 This is 24 years ago

Jo 15:10 Yeah. We were early in our marriage

Andy 15:12 That was very Black Country

Jo 15:13 Or maybe even in the honeymoon period. That first year.

Andy 15:16 That's my Black Country thinking about 25 years ago.

Jo 15:18 It was. Oh yeah

Andy 15:19 24 years ago, ar, innit.

Jo 15:21 You sound like Dave the Dog. That's weird. But yeah so, so quite early on in our marriage, and I can't remember what we were arguing about.

Andy 15:30 You were tired. I was tired. You were working shifts. I was working 70 hours plus a week.

Jo 15:35 And I don't know what happened, but, Andy thought it would be a really good idea to lighten the mood, and throw a cushion at me. Just thought it'd be funny to try and get us back just to being normal again,

Andy 15:46 It was a really good idea. And it was a great heart. And a great motivation. And it could have worked, it should have worked.

Jo 15:56 Except there was a zip on the, on the cushion

Andy 15:58 With a sharp pointy bit.

Jo 15:59 Was it, kind, of I don't know where it scratched me I can't remember.

Andy 16:02 The zip hit you on your cheek.

Jo 16:04 It kind of set. I didn't got like a bottle of pop. But I wasn't impressed. It didn't have the desired effect

Andy 16:09 My playful, let's deal with this and let's just the de-conflict the situation

Jo 16:14 Didn't. It escalated the problem.

Andy 16:16 De-escalated, that's the word.

Jo 16:17 And then unfortunately, I responded!

Andy 16:22 You responded!

Jo 16:23 with, do you remember the old Argos catalogues 'cosI don't think they do them anymore?

Andy 16:28 No. And when we say the old Argos catalogues, I mean not the little pamphlet ones. I mean the big chunky ones.

Jo 16:31 Like really big ones. Like you've got loads of toys, and products in there.

Andy 16:36 The only time in your life you've ever done this.

Jo 16:37 Yeah. I, I don't know what happened. I must have blacked out or something. But I chucked that Argos catalogue didn't I, in your in your direction. I mean it wasn't I don't know if I was aiming at anything in particular. I don't actually know where. Did you get hit by it?

Andy 16:54 You weren't aiming at me. You werejust frustrated by the situation. But I really hurt you.

Jo 16:57 But It didn't reach you then.

Andy 16:59 No.

Jo 16:59 Oh my. Not that I'm disappointed. But it's funny isn't it. You know? We can't remember that. You know, it's silly, isn't it?

Andy 17:05 No, but I thought it'd be really funny just to, like, tap you with a cushion, just to say, you know, timeout and

Jo 17:10 Yeah, and that yeah.

Andy 17:11 Who knew that the zip was so sharp and it was sticking out and broken.

Jo 17:14 So a bit of advice there. Don't don't throw cushions

Andy 17:17 Check your zips

Jo 17:17 Yeah. Zipless cushions if you're gonna throw them.

Andy 17:21 Yeah.

Jo 17:22 But yeah, things can get out of hand and emotions can and can fly and arguments can can happen. But it is good. It's healthy to have arguments. There's nothing with arguments, debates, discussion.

Andy 17:33 Oh, can I have a soapbox moment?

Jo 17:34 Oh, yeah, go on then.

Andy 17:35 Soapbox warning. I'm so fed up of the cancel culture.

Andy 17:38 I watched a quick clip on Question Time. I'm not gonna say what it was, 'cos it's not relevant. But a guy was saying 'I should have the right to say this, in the day's culture, because it's a biological fact. And he had a little quote. And he said 'this is what I believe, 'cos I know I'm gonna be attacked for having this opinion, but I should have a right, in public, to have an opinion which is not yours'.

Andy 17:58 And that's healthy. And that's okay. That's a good society. And then it went a bit pants and then then the person who is, what's it, the person who looks after the show?

Jo 18:10 Host.

Andy 18:10 Yeah, yeah. And she said 'obviously people would be very vehemently disagreeing with you.' And I thought, well, yeah, you don't need to say, that because it's fairly obvious. He's just said it.

Jo 18:17 Yeah.

Andy 18:17 You don't need to have the last word on a fairly obvious point.

Andy 18:20 But we don't need cancel culture in a marriage. We've got to have the ability to talk openly and freely in society. And what builds a good society? Well, it's good marriages? What builds a good marriage? Well being open and honest!

Jo 18:33 Yeah

Andy 18:33 And actually, I don't agree with everything that Jo thinks. She doesn't agree with everything that I think. To be honest, most things we disagree about we don't really care about, 'cos there's far too much more important stuff that we do agree on. Because there's always going to be disagreements. But there's nothing wrong with a disagreement. Don't think 'we don't have the same opinion, or the same perspective on how to raise children. Or how to look after our finances. Or what car should we buy? New or old. Or should we have a house we own, or rent? And do we have Christmas with the in laws or at home and it really doesn't matter. The most important thing is the marriage needs to be strong.

Jo 19:06 Yeah

Andy 19:06 I know couples who have taken their children off to Christmas with in-laws and I know one couple who said 'we ain't never moving anywhere on Christmas! You want to see the grandkids?You come and see them!' And, you know, neither was wrong. It was just different ways.

Jo 19:20 Yeah.

Andy 19:21 And how you communicate that is important. But it's communicating in love, knowing that the fact that Jo is female, and very different to me, because I am male. And just the intrinsic differences of male, and female, that's what makes a strong couple. That's why God wants it this way. Which is awesome!

Jo 19:35 Yeah!

Andy 19:36 And I need to value and accept to Jo is in Christ.

Jo 19:39 Yeah.

Andy 19:39 As a woman of God, which is great.

Jo 19:41 Yeah, love is

Andy 19:42 But she doesn't think like me

Jo 19:43 No!

Andy 19:43 which is a good thing, apparently.

Jo 19:45 Yeah, it is good! And we compliment, we complement each other.

Andy 19:48 You don't even say bath the right way though. It hasn't got an R in it! It's bath!

Jo 19:53 Yeah that's that's funny isn't it. When the boys, they they speak both ways don't they? We get a barth and a bath.

Andy 19:58 I'm gonna go and cut the grass and the grarse.

Jo 20:01 Poor things. Yeah, so communication is key in all kinds of relationships, but particularly in marriage, because of the amount of time you spend together, and because of the relationship, and the life, you're building together. And especially if you have children as well involved. And so it's about listening. It's about those non-verbals. It's about making sure we're not too angry, and we deal with those anger issues

Andy 20:29 In a righteous and appropriate way.

Jo 20:31 Yeah.

Andy 20:31 Not with a sharp cushion!

Jo 20:33 And the love is key isn't it. And loving one another. Forgiving one another. Showing grace and mercy because we're we're gonna get it wrong.

Andy 20:42 We are going to fail. We are gonna make mistakes. The important thing is not about do you, excuse me, it's not about whether you make a mistake. It's what do you do with it?

Andy 20:50 It's like anxiety. We're not supposed to be anxious, says God. But when you're anxious do this. You're not supposed to be angry but when you're angry, do this.

Andy 20:58 And in a similar context, when you disagree, how do you deal with that?

Jo 21:02 Yeah.

Andy 21:03 And being loving, and kind. Not trying to win the argument. I mean, that's a big one. We know, when we've had an argument, or a disagreement or a, doesn't matter how small or large is it, you lose the peace in the home. And the boys are upset about it, because well, mummy and daddy aren't getting on. And the one thing they have always said to us, which I'm really chuffed about, it's a proud husband moment, is they know that whatever's gone on we'll make it right.

Andy 21:27 And they know we're going to say sorry to each other. So, they've they've grown up with two parents who aren't perfect, who get things wrong. But, when we do make mistakes, we say sorry to each other we say sorry to the boys. And that, that, they've learned they're so confident about mum and dad, because they know that we'll, okay, we've had a disagreement, but disagreements are part of life.

Jo 21:48 Yeah.

Andy 21:49 Tension is part of life.

Jo 21:50 I was thinking another part of scripture is about putting the other person first isn't it? And that, that's really helpful.

Andy 21:57 We've got a tip for that later.

Jo 21:58 We have got one later. And that, that's that's gonna really help, if you put the other person first. And there's there's another scripture about why we got all these quarrels amongst you. And it's, it's it's selfishness that eats away, isn't it? You know, always wanting to, wanting to be right is a terrible thing, isn't it as well.

Andy 22:15 Yeah,Ok. I like to be right.

Jo 22:19 Yeah,

Andy 22:20 But you can be right, and you can be wrong all at the same time.

Jo 22:22 Yeah, it's a, yeah, you can, you can be right, yeah, absolutely. But actually, if you're hurting someone, you're wrong, aren't you really.

Andy 22:28 Pretty much. As a, you know, general rule.

Jo 22:31 Yeah. So we want to communicate and not hurt each other. That would be nice. Argue, well, yeah.

Andy 22:36 Debate. Have disagreements. Don't agree on everything. If Jo agreed with everything, I agreed with. If she thought everything I thought, it would be so dull.

Jo 22:43 Yeah.

Andy 22:43 And we have a really exciting marriage. It's really interesting. I don't know what Jo thinks about loads of stuff. And that's good. I'm still learning who she is. And, I'm 25 years in, and I want God to let it be another 100 'cos there's so much more

Jo 22:56 Too much to learn

Andy 22:57 To unpick about Jo, which I love, and yeah, disagreements are good. They're healthy. Ignore the cancel culture. Soapbox ended. There's nothing wrong with having disagreements.

Jo 23:06 Yeah.

Andy 23:07 But how do you disagree?

Jo 23:08 Yeah.

Andy 23:08 Shall we have a little break?

Jo 23:10 Yeah.

Jo 23:11 So let's pray. Andy's gonna come on, and show us how to pray. Excellent. What? What have you got there?

Andy 23:18 It's my world atlas.

Jo 23:19 Okay.

Andy 23:20 So I can pray for the world.

Jo 23:21 Okay.

Andy 23:21 You see, prayer is good

Jo 23:23 Right.Okay. You're gonna show us how to do that, then.

Andy 23:25 Yeah, yeah. So I've gone, I've got me atlas. And if you go to the letter A, I'm going to start here. So

Jo 23:31 Yeah.

Andy 23:31 And please God, please bless Abenra, and Arcshunn and Arbor.

Jo 23:38 What did you like about the story?

Dave the Dog 23:39 Bob

Jo 23:41 Bob? You liked Bob?

Andy 23:42 And the stick?

Jo 23:43 You liked the stick?

Dave the Dog 23:45 Me likes sticks a lot I do.

Jo 23:47 Okay, well, we'll try and make sure there's some more stories with sticks in.

Dave the Dog 23:50 Thankyou

Jo 23:50 Especially for you.

Jo 24:06 Welcome back to Marriage Matters.

Jo 24:08 We're talking about communication. And we've been rambling on about it. And talking, and sharing, some of our own stories. But now's the time to give you some tips on what? I've got a couple actually.

Jo 24:20 One of them is rather than concentrating on the words the other person's using, think about the pain that's that's behind it all. And that's a top tip. I've heard that been said. And I know it's hard. if they're saying things that hurt. They're pressing those buttons, their triggers are going off.

Jo 24:39 But if you can step back, and remember the love you have, and just think, for a moment, hang on, why are they saying those things. And if you let them, it'll fizzle out, and they'll probably say sorry, as well. So it's just worth remembering, what's the pain behind that?

Jo 24:53 If somebody is ranting, and raving, and really upset about something, and you know they've lost someone, you'll give them that space and that time. And we should do that with our, you know, with out other half, with each other in marriage. That, that that sensitivity. That love. That compassion.

Jo 25:07 And the next tip is not to use the "You" word. "You do this." "You do that." It's very judgmental. It's very harsh. And it's very tempting to come back and defend yourself, isn't it? And so use the, "when you do this, this is what it does to me". And it lets the other person off the hook. It means they can come back and go, Oh, Oh, I see. I didn't realise that. And it gives them, because we don't want to assassinate people's characters. And we want to just say, look, when you do that, that really upsets me. And maybe you can find a way forward.

Andy 25:44 You see, you've had really good training on how to speak properly. And one of the arguments you've had, probably more than any other single argument origin of any sort is, having a conversation. I say some't. And Jo says 'no, what you need to do is you need to say it like this.

Jo 25:56 Oh, I see, yeah.

Andy 25:57 Because you've been trained to say things a certain way, which is brilliant in certain environments. Not quite so good, in tense environments at home.

Jo 26:05 Yeah.

Andy 26:06 But I wasn't taught how to do that stuff. So, I kind of, gush my feelings, and thoughts, and emotions, and, 'Okay,Jo over you go, you sort that out'. And actually you do,. You're quite good. You're quite patient with me, in a good way.

Jo 26:18 Yeah.

Andy 26:18 But I don't know how to speak properly, like Jo does.

Jo 26:21 But I think I've learned from you. I've learned to be more honest, 'cos I think it's important in relationships, to be honest about how we feel. So, I've learned that from you. And you've learned how, maybe, to say it in a different way.

Andy 26:32 I have got better?

Jo 26:33 Yeah, so we all think we've rubbed off off each other

Andy 26:36 in a good way we've rubbed off. It's good!

Andy 26:38 So song songs.

Jo 26:40 Yeah.

Andy 26:41 So, I was thinking about this. Jo loves me. I know she does. We've been married for nearly 25 years. She's chosen to surrender a life of independence, to be dependent upon me, as I'm dependent upon her. And we're in marriage together, and it's great.

Andy 26:57 But sometimes, I go to a place, in a tense place anyway, of thinking, well, she's attacking me, she's against me, she hates me, she doesn't want to be with me. And sometimes when I'm not very well, I might distract myself with something, just to take myself off being sick, feeling sick, or a headache or whatever. And I was thinking sometimes that's quite healthy to have a bit of a distraction.

Andy 27:18 And I was thinking about a good, appropriate, distraction for marriage, and Song of Songs. And let's just jump to chapter 4, verses 9 and 10.

Andy 27:26 "You have stolen my heart, my sister, my bride,"

Andy 27:29 very true.

Andy 27:30 "You have stolen my heart with one glance of your eyes, with one jewel of your necklace. How delightful is your love my sister, my bride. How much more pleasing is your love than wine? And the fragrance of your perfume than any spice."

Andy 27:42 That's a really good couple of verses to meditate upon, so that when you're thinking about your other half, and your, if you've got that in your head that 'yeah but this person really loves me, and we're talking about healthy, appropriate relationships here, this person really loves me. Jo, Jo's given her life to be my wife, and to, to serve with me, and all that kind of stuff. So, actually, I know that she doesn't want to hurt me. Because if she does, she always feels bad about it.

Andy 28:11 So, actually, if I remember that one glance of your eyes. I mean, this is a private moment for me and Jo, but when we were getting married, and we were at the altar, and there's one of the lines that we were repeating, as part of the wedding vows. And there's a way that Jo looked to me that made me know that she loves me.

Andy 28:28 That's the moment I remember, because that's never changed.

Andy 28:32 And it's important to have these moments that we remember when all hell has broken loose. 'Yeah, but Jo loves me.' And that's what sticks.

Jo 28:40 Yeah.

Andy 28:41 We've got some Proverbs.

Jo 28:42 Yeah, so this is the Tips and Resources section. So, we thought these Proverbs would be quite helpful. We'll just read them out to you

Andy 28:49 Proverbs 17, 28, New Living Translation, all of these.

Andy 28:53 "Even fools are thought wise, when they keep silent. With their mouth shut, they seem intelligent."

Jo 28:59 I like that! Proverbs 12, 15 says,

Jo 29:01 "Fools think their own way is right. But the wise listen to others."

Andy 29:06 Proverbs 18, 2.

Andy 29:08 "Fools have no interest in understanding. They only want to air their own opinions."

Jo 29:13 Proverbs 15, 1.

Jo 29:15 "A gentle answer deflects anger. But harsh words make tempers flare."

Andy 29:22 So very true. Guilty.

Andy 29:24 Proverbs 29, 20.

Andy 29:25 "There is more hope for a fool, than for someone who speaks without thinking"

Andy 29:30 Can I leavethe room before this last one?

Jo 29:32 I love this one. This is really direct. Are you ready for this?

Jo 29:35 Proverbs 21, 23. We think this is a memory verse!

Andy 29:39 This good.!

Jo 29:39 "Watch your tongue and keep your mouth shut. And you will stay out of trouble."

Jo 29:46 Love it,

Andy 29:46 I j ust, as you as you read that, I remembered a great image that came from Fierce Marriage. I've printed this off somewhere. But it's "More kissing, less bickering". 'Cos you can't argue if you're kissing can you?

Jo 29:56 That's it, yeah. It stops that.

Andy 29:58 Shall we have a break?

Jo 29:59 Yeah.

Dave the Dog 30:04 I don't know where to sit 'cos this is in my face.

Jo 30:08 Do you know what? Do you think we'll? Shall we watch the video then, on this this pumpkin carving?

Dave the Dog 30:12 Why is Andy making pumpkin pie?

Jo 30:14 He's not making pumpkin pie. He's taking all the pumpkin stuff out, to make this lovely lantern. It's gonna be a light in the middle. 'Cos it's a light party. It's all about light.

Dave the Dog 30:24 So what's he doing with the gunk?

Jo 30:26 Oh, he just bins that. Do you like pumpkin?

Dave the Dog 30:28 No

Jo 30:29 No, I don't like pumpkin. Some people do, I think.

Dave the Dog 30:32 Is it, is it, is it a scary one?

Jo 30:35 No, no! It's a happy pumpkin! It's a pumpkin with a happy smiley face.

Dave the Dog 30:40 Can you have happy pumpkins?

Jo 30:41 Yeah, yeah, absolutely. Well, we've got one. We've got one coming up.

Dave the Dog 30:45 Am you sure?

Jo 30:45 Absolutely. It's a happy pumpkin. It's not a scary pumpkin. It's got good things.

Dave the Dog 30:50 I don't like scary.

Jo 30:51 No, I know you don't. That's why we're doing a happy one.

Dave the Dog 30:53 I don't know where to sit. This thing's in me face.

Jo 30:57 Should we watch this video then?

Dave the Dog 30:58 Where's the soundman? I think he needs to fix it.

Jo 31:01 We can hear you. We can hear you fine. Yep. It's all good. And we've got light, because it's a light party.

Jo 31:11 Shall we watch this video then, and watch this carving?

Dave the Dog 31:14 Ar, that sounds good that.

Jo 31:15 Yeah. Brilliant.

Dave the Dog 31:17 I like fish.

Jo 31:18 You do like fish don't you!

Dave the Dog 31:18 They're fun. I've got a fish tank.

Jo 31:20 Have you? What sort of fish you got?

Dave the Dog 31:22 Dead ones!

Jo 31:22 Oh,

Dave the Dog 31:23 I like fish. I'm just not very good at looking after em.

Jo 31:27 Oh dear. Shall we? Moving on! Moving on to the hat.

Dave the Dog 31:30 They used to be happy.

Jo 31:32 They used to be, yeah? They used to be alive. When they were happy, when they were alive.

Dave the Dog 31:35 Ar!

Andy 31:50 Whilst our BerryBunch 2021 Light Party has been and gone, go and check it out. It's really funny.

Jo 31:56 Yeah.

Andy 31:56 It was good. We had some fun. Dave the Dog joined us in the studio. There's lots of David in the avderts tonight?

Jo 32:01 Yeah. Well, it's it's a hard subject, isn't it, communication? If, I mean, you might be having flashbacks of, of

Andy 32:08 Argos catalogues

Jo 32:08 Cushions and things!

Andy 32:10 Flying through the air.

Jo 32:12 Communication. What have we talked about?

Jo 32:14 Well, we've talked about scripture. That it's important to not be angry, and deal with those issues,

Andy 32:19 Not let the sun go down on your anger.

Jo 32:21 Yes.

Andy 32:22 Which we've always done, we've always done that!

Jo 32:24 To be fair, we have tried very hard to stick with that one. Even if it's meant, like 3o'clock in the morning. It's like I need to get to work. Got away with it a lot more when we were younger, 'cos somehow you can get up then. But anyway.

Jo 32:36 Yeah, communication is really key to relationships 'cos we live, and sleep together, and share a home together, and maybe children. So, you know, it's kind of a lot more maybe a lot more important than in other relationships, because of the fact that we spend so much time together.

Jo 32:40 And we talked about how we bring stuff into the marriage. Our baggage, Our experiences of other relationships, of how our parents may have, have had their relationship. We bring that in.

Andy 33:04 Language issues, culture,

Jo 33:05 Language, all kinds of things. Expectations

Andy 33:09 Cushions.

Jo 33:09 Yeah, and of course with the gender difference, you know, between a man and a woman and how we might communicate. Not that we want to stereotype, but, there are some, there are significant differences that we bring into the marriage. And we have to learn how we tick, I think, we talked about didn't we?

Andy 33:25 I'm remembering a little scene from the film Incredibles.

Jo 33:28 Oh yeah.

Andy 33:28 And they're having a big ding dong in the lounge. Really getting angry with each other. And he's getting louder, and butcher. And then she's getting taller. And it's just, who's gonna win this argument? 'Cos actually she's taller than he is.

Jo 33:38 Yeah, it's funny Yeah, actually they, some of the films do make arguments quite funny really? And if, and maybe we do need to see the funny side to be fair. And look back and just laugh, like we just did with the whole cushion episode.

Andy 33:51 I'm really grateful that Argos catalogues aren't made anymore.

Jo 33:54 Yeah. But yeah, it's good

Andy 33:56 If you can't laugh about it you're gonna cry about it.

Jo 33:59 You've got to haven't you!

Andy 33:59 And it's part of LIFE

Jo 34:00 It is, isn't it, yeah,

Andy 34:02 You can make it all nice and pretty and say, oh yes, we never have this a disagreement we sit down have a conversation, and, it don't happen. Tempers flare, tiredness grows. Emotions go. Hormones kick in and whoosh, boom.

Jo 34:12 Absolutely. But say sorry, don't go to bed on your anger.

Andy 34:16 No.

Jo 34:17 Forgiveness is key. And showing grace, and mercy, is, is really important.

Andy 34:21 See the pain, don't hear the words. Don't ignore them.

Jo 34:24 Yeah.

Andy 34:25 That's just gonna re-escalate the situation.

Andy 34:28 Okay, homework, Song of Songs. Go and, go off, and read Song of Songs chapter 4. And go and learn verses 9and 10, to be honest. Or just first 9 will do.

Andy 34:39 "You have stolen my heart, my sister, my bride. You have stolen my heart with one glance of your eyes, with one jewel of your necklace."

Andy 34:45 When you're having a bit of a dingdong, argument, that's a colloquialism, isn't it?

Andy 34:50 When you're having a disagreement, just remember, the marriage day. Remember that this person has committed their life with you.

Jo 34:57 Yeah.

Andy 34:57 And it might help put some things back in perspective.

Jo 35:00 Yeah. I was thinking about 1 Corinthians 13. It's a scripture that often comes into weddings. And it talks about what love is. 'Love is patient. Love is kind. Love does not keep a record of wrongs.' And I think that is very helpful to remember. I love that scripture. And as I say, it's something that comes up.

Andy 35:18 What was it?

Jo 35:19 1 Corinthians 13 is it? It's often ,

Andy 35:23 "If I speak in the tongues of men and angels"

Jo 35:25 If I do not have love, and love is key, which is what you're saying there, in Song of Songs. That's reminding us how much we love each other. And that's really key to keeping harmony, and peace, in the home.

Andy 35:36 Harmony and peace is good. I forgot what I was gonna say. Was I supposed to say something?

Jo 35:40 I just we just rounding up really, what we've talked about. So do you think we've covered everything?

Andy 35:44 I think so.

Andy 35:45 Saying sorry, is good.

Jo 35:46 Yeah.

Andy 35:46 Make sure you say sorry. Make, p[eople see, make sure your, especially children, know that you're putting things right? You know, there's no point in having.

Andy 35:52 I mean this is, again, films do this brilliantly.

Andy 35:55 "Mommy and dad are in the car. Why?"

Andy 35:56 "Oh, they're they having an argument again"

Andy 35:57 Mum and Dad are in ther car. "Well at least the kids don't know that we're arguing."

Andy 36:00 You know, children know if you're not getting on.

Jo 36:03 Yeah.

Andy 36:04 And that's why I love working with children, because they see a spade and, you know, they see a spade.

Andy 36:09 And saying sorry's good. Making sure they know that we're right.

Andy 36:12 And that we have a rule in our house, we've had it for a long time, that when we've had an argument, a disagreement, whatever it is, how big or tiny it is, we have to kiss in front of the kids. And what are they? 11, 17, 18, and they're 16 and 18, they're really happy that we're right again. And it's all good again.

Andy 36:28 Put each other, right? Make sure you've got the right focus on, you know, Jo loves me, so if there's something going wrong, what's going wrong in her life? Why is she struggling with this? Is she just tired?

Andy 36:39 I accidentally hit a lad on on the head, once, a long time ago at a Scout camp. We were moving these big pole things, and I accidentally hit him on the head. And he really flipped out. He had a bit of concussion, and he was fine.

Andy 36:51 But, he became a very different person. And we've got to be careful that someone reacting in a way, that is not normal, is something we should take concern about. Now that was very obvious. And it was an accident. He got hit on the head, and he reacted. But, actually, it doesn't have to be that extreme. Actually it could just be someone's thirsty, or someone's hot, or they're tired. And that can just make them appear in a really odd, weird way. So, beware, the inconstincies.

Jo 37:18 yeah, I was just, that, that made me think just then. We're all responsible for our own actions, our own behaviour, what we say. But actually, we should be careful about how we might be causing someone else to respond, if you know what I mean. Not that we take responsibility for their actions. But, we know that we can say things. We can make things worse. Prod things or, because we know things about each other.

Andy 37:38 The best thing about being married to you for nearly 25 years is that I know everything about you. The worst thing about 25 years is that you know everything about me. There's a flipside. It's a good thing. But marriage is a wonderfully vulnerable situation in a healthy way, because we're vulnerable to each other.

Andy 37:53 And the more vulnerable you are, the better the relationship gets. But the more vulnerable you are, the better the relationship gets and the more you can hurt each other. Which is where trust, and compassion, and grace, and all that kind of stuff comes in.

Jo 38:04 It's all good stuff.

Andy 38:05 It's all good stuff.

Jo 38:07 It's hard. There are difficult times. But

Andy 38:09 Check your pillows and your cushions?

Jo 38:10 What does it say in the wedding vows? To death do us part? But, but isn't it through the difficulties? Is there something in there about the death?

Andy 38:17 Through sickness and health. There's a modern version isn't there?

Jo 38:20 And, yeah, arguably, sickness could be emotionally or mentally, you know, difficult times Really?

Andy 38:25 Yep.

Jo 38:26 All part of life. Great tapestry of life?

Andy 38:28 So lvoe each other. Forgive each other. Love each other. Be very slow to anger. And remember you have one mouth and two ears.

Jo 38:35 Yes,

Andy 38:36 it's an old one, but it's a good one!

Jo 38:38 Good one. Says it all.

Jo 38:41 Thank you so much for joining us on Marriage Matters.

Andy 38:44 Bye for now

Jo 38:44 Bye for now

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