Proverbs 16:20 (GW)
“ Whoever gives attention to the Lord’s word prospers and blessed is the person who trusts the Lord.”
Its been said that most marriages don’t suffer from infidelity but from fatigue. Life has a way of pulling us away from the important to focus on the immediate.
When life starts getting too complicated and I start getting overwhelmed, I have personally found that its because I have drifted away from the basics which cause my foundation to be shaky. And so it is in marriage.
Here are a few basics that will help you superglue your marriage.
1. Write the Vision
Every marriage/family should have a vision. If you don’t have a vision for your marriage/family, you surely won’t have an effective one for your ministry. Sit down and dream together. Shut all the distractions off and get in a quiet place together. What are your goals? Identify them and write them down. What are your spiritual, financial, and physical dreams? Where are you heading as a couple and how are you going to get there? (Habakkuk 2:2-3)
2. Make a list of the reasons you fell in love.
The pressures of life can make issues seem insurmountable and sometimes make you wonder why you even married this person! Sit and meditate on all the good you are experiencing. Make a “good report list” according to Philippians 4:8.
“Finally, brethren, whatever things are true, whatever things are noble, whatever things are just, whatever things are pure, whatever things are lovely, whatever things are of good report, if there is any virtue and if there is anything praiseworthy—meditate on these things. “ (NKJV)
Write down all the reasons you fell in love in the first place. This is your “good report list.” Keep it handy – you’ll need to refer to it often!
3. Tell each other “I Love you” at the very least, twice a day.
Proverbs 16:24 tells us that pleasant words are as a honeycomb…sweet to the mind and healing to the body. Everyone needs to hear they are loved. Tell your spouse you love them first thing in the morning and last thing at night – at the very least. A word fitly spoken in due season is like apples of gold in a setting of silver. (Proverbs 24:11) We’ve made it our habit to never leave the house without telling the other we love them and hardly end a phone call without doing the same.
4. Pray Together
Prayer is a spiritual discipline that will guard and protect your covenant. We all pray differently, but don’t let that stop you or intimidate you. This isn’t a competition, it’s a privilege to go before God and present your requests. I’m not talking about a lengthy prayer meeting. Just invite the Holy Spirit to lead you both and guide your day. Pray about your concerns, needs, finances, children and ministry. Ask for wisdom for the decisions you need to make. The Holy Spirit will help you pray effectively. When couples agree in prayer, it is a powerful force. Just pray!
5. Discuss Your Daily Plans and schedules.
Life is so busy and there needs to be clear communication so you both know what is going on and what your schedules are. Communicate your plans, schedules, appointments, evenings out, etc. Nothing worse than cooking dinner for everyone and no one plans on being home that evening or how about missing one of your children’s important sports events or school plays! Get on the same page and make life easier for both of you – sit down with your calendars discuss your schedules. This will also help show you if you are living a crazy pace!
6. Set boundaries on outside relationships.
Be careful of people and their constant emergency needs that take you away from your family. Don’t thrive on being the knight in shining armor that drops everything to jump on your horse to go rescue the damsel in distress. If you have “the need to be needed,” it can get you off track really fast. Don’t rescue everyone else and neglect the ones you live with. They need you more than anyone else does. Proverba 31:6 (Amp) “Don’t neglect your present duties by assuming others….”
7. Make spouse’s birthday and your anniversary special days.
Birthdays and anniversaries are special days worthy of recognition and celebration. They don’t require lots of money, just lots of love, creativity and attention. Prepare for these special days and get creative. Your spouse will be so happy you remembered and planned something special.
8. Have a regular date night.
To do this weekly is great, but if it is not possible to do weekly in the season you are in, then just do it. Again, this doesn’t need to cost a lot of money, just make the time for it. A picnic, walk in the park, drive to the beach, go for an ice cream, keep it simple, but just do it. Agree not to answer the phones or check your accounts. This is precious time so don’t let unnecessary interruptions disrupt this time together. You both need to be alone more than you realize and you will come to really look forward to these special moments.
9. Have some fun!
Life can be intense and the pressures are real but we all must make a concerted effort to lighten up. Proverbs 17:22 tells us that a merry heart does us good like medicine. That’s pretty powerful to think a happy heart is as strong as medicine.
Proverbs also tells us that a cheerful mind works healing. Laughter is truly good medicine for every area of our lives.
If its been a long time since you and your spouse have had any fun and you are not sure you even remember how, then connect with another couple and have some fun together to break the ice. You’ll catch on quick and before you know it, you and your spouse will be living life light!
10. Learn to serve each other.
My father in law, who recently left for heaven, was a very wise man. He married me and Jonathan, which was very special for us. In our marriage vows he exhorted Jonathan to always treat me like a Queen and for me to always treat Jonathan like a King. We haven’t been perfect at it, but after over four decades of marriage, these words still ring clear daily as we walk out our love for each other. Having the heart of a servant should permeate our lives in every arena.
I hope these few nuggets help you as you purpose to superglue your marriage. I’d love to hear from you and some of the practices you embrace to strengthen your marriage.