Have You Checked Your Bags?
One event that makes my heart beat fast and has all my senses on alert is the airport
When we fly I’m anxious from the moment we walk into the airport, go through ticketing, check our bags, and head to the dreaded security line. Not that there is a problem with any of it. I check and double check my bags. I know what’s allowed and what’s not. It
is not that I have a fear that something will go wrong. I just want, no, I need to get
through the process of my bag and I getting scanned, in order to make it to the point
when I can breathe and put my shoes back on. Now I can walk to the appropriate gate.
I’m ok and my bag is right there.
Why does it matter? From the time I get out of my vehicle, my bag is with me. I’m
pulling it behind me through the parking garage, through security, all the way to the
storage bin above my seat on the plane. It will still be behind me as I exit and arrive at
That’s what baggage does. It goes everywhere we go, ready to be revealed at just the
right or wrong moment. It’s the same in our marriages. We carry the baggage of our
past with us. It is there when we are dating and when we say our wedding vows. And it is
with us as we enter into this exciting thing called marriage.
Baggage can take on many forms. It can hold hurt feelings of family relations. Unmet
expectations from past relationships can be packed away in our baggage. Past sexual
experiences, anger, emotional abuse, divorce, biological or relational family traits, even
a medical condition can qualify as something carried deep inside those bags right into
Any form of this baggage can appear as the new couple begins to learn one another.
Why weren’t the bags opened when we were dating? At that time you probably were
not digging too deep into the past of your partner. We usually want to keep our past
hidden and hope it never comes up. But once we are married, it will naturally produce
stress in the relationship as the couple begins to really learn about each other. This
leads to opened bags. The contents, if not handled properly, can lead to arguments,
communication breakdown, and can destroy unity in your marriage without you as a
couple realizing why.
How do I know? Without knowing, I too brought baggage into our marriage. I never
realized I reacted the way I did to Debbie and our kids until this one particular day.
Debbie and I were having a conversation and the subject came up. I remember sitting
on the couch. It was a revelation. Our talk revealed that I had responded to my own
family as I had witnessed as a child. Some might say it’s a hereditary trait. Mine was
probably a learned behavior.
Let me ask you - how full are your bags? We all bring baggage into our marriage. Are
there issues the two of you need to talk about? The one you said, “I do” to needs and
wants to understand what you are going through.
Set up a time with your spouse today to sit down and explain your baggage. But before you do, read Debbie’s post, Baggage Removal to learn how to safely unpack those bags.
It might not be easy, but I bet they’ll listen and possibly see what has been a block in
your marriage, keeping it from thriving. Hopefully, your spouse will recognize the
baggage they carried in as well. Debbie did. It was a healing conversation for both of
us. We trusted God to be our strength as we walked through difficult areas of our
This opened baggage is an area for you both to address as you pray together.
Remember, when we give our issues to Jesus, the enemy has no further power. As you
strive to become “one” your marriage will grow stronger.
Seeking the Word,