Paul and Amy Collins' oldest son, Jack, married Katie Phillips on May 12, 2019, at the Son Rise Retreat Center. Jack has been serving in the United States Air Force since September 11, 2018, and completed his training at Lackland Air Force Base (AFB), San Antonio, Texas; Sheppard AFB, Wichita Falls, Texas; and Holloman AFB, Alamogordo, New Mexico. Jack's first assignment as an F-16 Crew Chief is to Shaw AFB in Sumter, South Carolina. Katie will continue her education in nursing at a college in Sumter.
The wedding was a beautiful celebration of what God has done for Jack and Katie so far and all that they have ahead of them. The Collins; Amy's family, the Schofields; the Phillips; and the Son Shine Team gathered with extended family and many friends for this special day. We are excited about their future and appreciate your prayers for this wonderful newlywed couple.
Truly Being Heard
Researcher John Gottman has identified conflict avoidance as the #1 predictor of a failed marriage. As Son Shine Ministries actively trains on communication and conflict resolution, one of the most important skills needed is active listening. When done well, it communicates respect and makes your spouse truly know he/she is heard.
Active listening begins when your spouse shares with you something of importance, including the emotion connected with it. After listening intently, you then paraphrase back to your spouse what you heard, identifying the emotion that accompanied it. This is not the time to express an opinion. The key to this stage is to make sure your spouse is truly heard. The next step is that the original "sender" evaluates the paraphrased response, fine-tuning it to make sure he/she is truly understood. In conflict resolution, it is important for both spouses to take turns doing this before possible solutions are discussed. Besides escalating initial reactions, it is in the active listening step of paraphrasing where we often see couples go off course. Active listening is a learned skill (i.e., it takes practice).
Jeff Daly's oft-quoted statement, "Two monologues do not make a dialogue," is true, but two monologues (with active listening) often begin a dialogue. Communication is vital in relationships. Is this a strength in your marriage? What small thing could you do today to improve it?