CNLP 248: Joel and Nina Schmidgall on Why Marriage is Hard and Why Praying Circles Around Your Marriage Can Change More Than You Think

Anyone who has been married for a while knows it can be difficult, but marriage is often harder than most couples signed up for. Joel and Nina Schmidgall talk about the struggles they themselves and the couples they work with face, and how prayer can help more than you think. Adapting the framework of Mark Batterson’s New York Time’s Best-selling book, The Circle Maker, Joel and Nina talk about how praying circles around your marriage can change your marriage for the better.

Welcome to Episode 248 of the podcastListen and access the show notes below or search for the Carey Nieuwhof Leadership Podcast on Apple Podcasts or wherever you get your podcasts and listen for free.

Guest Links

Joel on Twitter | Joel on Facebook | Nina on Twitter | Nina on Facebook

Praying Circles Around Your Marriage @PrayingMarriage 

Episode Links

Step up your digital game and grow your congregation through custom-tailored content with Pro Media Fire. Take advantage of this special offer for podcast listeners at promediafire.com/carey and receive 10% off all plans for life and 40% off media bundles for life.

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CNLP 165: Mark Batterson on How to Hear God’s Voice (And God’s Will for Your Life)

Episode 152: Eugene Peterson on Why He Wrote the Message, the Rythms of a Reflective Life + Mark Batterson and Adam Weber on Peterson’s Legacy

Episode 128: Mark Batterson on Chasing Down Your Dreams without Fear

Episode 032: How Mark Batterson Writes – A Behind the Scenes Look at the Publishing Life of a Pastor and NYT Bestselling Author

The Circle Maker: Praying Circles Around Your Biggest Dreams and Greatest Fears by Mark Batterson

CNLP 241: Ian Morgan Cron on Using Your Enneagram Number to Boost Self-Awareness, Spiritual Growth and Reduce Conflict at Work and at Home

The Road Back to You: An Enneagram Journey to Self-Discovery by Ian Morgan Cron

3 Insights from Joel & Nina

1. Conflict in marriage is an opportunity for growth

Often couples try to avoid conflict at all costs, but those costs are high and can take relationships to very unhealthy places. It’s important to learn how to fight fair and to use that tension as an opportunity to grow closer.

Ultimately, the source of conflict comes from not knowing how to relate to each other’s unique personalities. Learning how to navigate those differences in a way that builds up both people is key to growing together in the healthiest of ways.

2. Routine maintenance is a great investment for your marriage

Anyone who owns a car knows it’s better to get a $30 oil change regularly than to end up spending thousands replacing an engine. That same idea of routine maintenance should play out in marriage, too.

One great way to perform routine checkups, whether weekly, monthly, or whatever you work out, is to consistently come together and invest time communicating in your marriage. Come to your checkups prepared, open and ready to initiate whatever conversations need to take place and you should see a great return on the investment of your routine maintenance.

3. Praying circles in your marriage maximizes what God can do

What if couples leaned more into prayer? In their book Praying Circles Around Your Marriage, Joel and Nina write about what marriage can look like when couples bring intentionality, purpose, and specificity to their prayer life – into the worst parts and into the best parts of marriage.

Couples can see change happen through prayer in every part of their marriage by seeking understanding rather than being understood. Connecting to the Holy Spirit will maximize who they are, their calling, and what God can and will do through their marriage.

Quotes from Episode 248

If you're winning at work, but not winning at home, you're losing. @cnieuwhof Click To Tweet You're drawn to the things that you wish you had more of in your own life. @ninaschmidgall Click To Tweet I don't know how people do marriage without prayer. When your body hits your knees, your heart finds humility. @joelschmidgall Click To Tweet It's amazing how often we allow conflict, division and problems to go unresolved just by neglect. @cnieuwhof Click To Tweet If you've never prayed for your wife, you have a weapon in your arsenal that you're not using. @joelschmidgall Click To Tweet Consistency beats intensity. @joelschmidgall Click To Tweet

Read or Download the Transcript for Episode 248

Looking for a key quote? More of a reader?

Read or download a free PDF transcript of this episode here.

Didn’t See It Coming Will Help You Solve the Problems Most Leaders Miss

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Over the years, one of the things I’ve enjoyed most about being a public speaker is having opportunities to hang out with Carey…It’s not a matter of if you’ll run into these challenges; it’s a matter of when. Be prepared by spending a little time with a leader who has already been there.” Jon Acuff, NYT best-selling author

“Nieuwhof’s book provides expert guidance…with an accuracy that pierces the heart.” Nancy Duarte, CEO Duarte Inc.

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You can learn more and get your copy of Didn’t See It Coming here.

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Next Episode: Kara Powell & Steve Argue

Every parent and every teen and young adult knows things are changing. So does every parent and leader. But the real question is: How are things changing and what does it mean? Kara Powell and Steve Argue dive into their latest research and explain how a twenty year gap has emerged between when kids grow up too fast as young teens but don’t fullly emerge as adults until 30, and what that means for kids, parents, emerging adults and leaders.

Subscribe for free now and you won’t miss Episode 249.

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