5 Scriptures to Pray For Your Marriage

10
Jul
2014

Scripture-pray-marriage

Being intentional in marriage is extremely important.  I was reminded of this today as I read Marriage:  A Lifelong Journey (a devotional on the YouVersion Bible APP by Jim Daly.)  This paragraph resonated with me and I wanted to share it:

“Like a canoe, marriages often drift.  There’s no obvious conflict or struggle, just subtle distractions that lull spouse asleep.  Couples hardly notice they’re losing interest in one another until they end up somewhere they never intended to be.”  – Jim Daly

This is so true.  It can be easy to coast along and then before you know it, if you take your marriage for granted, even unintentionally, you are at a place where you do not want to be.  Alone, being room-mates or not engaged they way God created us to be together in marriage.

Being intentional can bring about a lot of “things” to do, but one thing we can do is pray for our marriages.  As I began my second time of reading “Wife After God” by Unveiled Wife, it all came back to me how I can let my marriage run on idle.  This will cause damage, even when I cannot see it.

As I begin an intentional journey of reading, journaling and praying for my marriage – just because, I thought you might want to as well.  My marriage is not in trouble, in fact it is great.  But it is when things are great that we must keep our guard up and be even more intentional.  This is where the enemy likes to wait and bait us.

Here are 5 Scriptures that I will be praying for my marriage – will you join me?

Let your eyes look straight ahead; fix your gaze directly before you.  Give careful thought to the paths for your feet and be steadfast in all your ways.  Do not turn to the right or the left; keep your foot from evil.   Proverbs 4: 24-27

Let us hold unswervingly to the hope we profess, for he who promised is faithful.  Hebrews 10:23

Be completely humble and gentle; Be patient, bearing with one another in love. Make every effort to keep the unity of the spirit through the bond of peace.  Ephesians 4:2-3

Instead, speaking the truth in love, we will grow to become in every respect the mature body of him who is the head, that is, Christ.  Ephesians 4:15

Above all, love each other deeply, because love covers over a multitude of sins. 1 Peter 4:8

Weekend to Remember

10
Apr
2014

Weekend-to-Remember-title

When was the last time you truly spent intentional time on your marriage?

I get it, time, money, other resources….it is hard and a challenge.  But ladies…..it is so worth it in the end.  Maybe it is a regular date night, finding ways to connect together regularly investing in each other, doing bible study together or perhaps you are ready to take it one step further and learn from couples who have been doing this ‘marriage’ gig for many years.

That is what Family Life’s Weekend to Remember is all about.

Weekend-Remember

My husband and I went to our first Weekend to Remember almost 6 years ago – less than a year after we were married.  Now, this being our second marriage, we knew we wanted to make this work and needed the tools and resources to be successful.  We had messed up the first time around, for many reasons and wanted to be united in our commitment and do whatever we could do be a true couple, together for God’s purpose.

That weekend changed our perspective on marriage, on our role as a spouse and what ‘oneness’ as a couple truly meant in God’s eyes.  It was a weekend filled with practical biblical information on how to build our marriage God’s way.

So when the chance came to go again, 6 years later, we decided to make it happen.  We gathered a few other couples who had never been before and set out to grow in our marriage.

We stayed at a lovely hotel that was local to use and had a great room with a view – it was perfect.  With 4 kids – we get little time away, so when it can be with a view like this I am one happy mama!  

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Going to the conference was great, but actually being able to stay overnight in the hotel for TWO nights was pure bliss!

The conference runs from Friday evening until Sunday at noon.  It is packed with sessions on communication, learning how we fight and even a session on “marriage after dark.”  Yes, it was about SEX.

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Our two mentor couples, Bob and Jan Horner and Rick and Judy Taylor had very unique stories and were both very entertaining – which is more fun for everyone!  Who needs a boring marriage conference?  They shared personal stories which really helped couples identify and made it easier to apply the principles they shared to each of our marriages in real ways.

One of the major projects we did during the weekend was to write a love letter to our spouse.  Now, we had done this 6 years ago, but what I found very interesting was that the letters we wrote this time, were very similar to what we wrote previously.  We didn’t look at the previous letters until after we did the one for this season, but it was a confirmation to us of what we truly cherished in each other.

We also had our workbooks from 6 years ago and were able to look back at some of the information and what we thought being “newly married” and compared it to what we felt now.  It was very thought provoking for sure.

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We left the weekend each with specific action points to be intentional with.  This is important.  You can go to a ton of conferences about marriage or listen to a million podcasts, but unless you choose to make a point to pick certain things to change, nothing does.

One of the biggest take aways I got form this weekend was that my spouse is not perfect, but he is the PERFECT one for me.  I need to remember this daily, and be intentional in setting aside my selfish tendencies too.  

It is never too late to rekindle a romance, to think differently about your marriage or be willing to change.  If you are thinking you need a bit of a ‘tune-up’ in your marriage or maybe a complete overhaul – why not look or a Weekend to Remember conference near where you live?

Weekend-to-Remember

Family Life is also offering a new one day conference for couples called “I Still do” and may be near your area and fit your schedule too.

Have you ever been to a marriage conference?  Did you find it helpful, if so how?

Finding Connection Together

20
Aug
2013


Marriage – tricky, intentional, forgiving, exhilarating, adventurous and so beautiful.

Yesterday was my 6th anniversary and I chose to invite my hubby hiking in order to celebrate.  He had asked what I wanted to do, and yep, I chose hiking.  Now let me say, it probably wasn’t my first choice of what I would have wanted to do, but I am so glad it is what we did.  It brought back some really good memories for me, memories that had been buried under the current obligations with kids, jobs and hectic life.

Before we were married we did some hiking and I can specifically remember one of our first dozen dates included a hike that was pivotal in our relationship.  The conversation we shared during the 5 hours was uninterrupted and the experience showed us we could conquer something fairly difficult together.  This hike had us climbing to a height of around 3500 ft – not an easy task.  You can see how high we are from the distance of the ground in the one photo. [Read more...]

5 Minute Marriage Secret

8
Aug
2013

If I told you there was a nearly sure-fire way to create a fabulous marriage, would you believe me?

What if I told you it would take only 5 minutes a day and you could do it anywhere?

How about if I shared that the secret was life giving and would bless you immensely?

And now, how about it I told you it wouldn’t cost you a dime?

Would you want to hear what secret I had? It really isn’t a secret at all, but unfortunately most Christian couples aren’t engaging in and experiencing the benefit of this practice.

The secret – praying together in marriage.

Why

Praying together in marriage is one of the main ways to create a strong and secure marriage, with both each other and God in the center.  This is reflective of the nature of sharing our intimate thoughts with each other in prayer as well as verbalizing them to God.  It is like a lifeline that links all three together.

  • Praying together brings couples into agreement as you thank Him for your blessings as well as petition for things you desire or seek as a couple.
  • Praying together is vital to a lasting marriage. Being vulnerable in front of both God and your spouse creates a level of intimacy not reached in any other way.
  • Keeping God at the center of your marriage sustains the covenant between you.

Benefits

The list of benefits is probably endless. I would even go out on the edge and say there could not be a downside to praying together as a couple for your marriage – there are only positive benefits.

  • Deeper communication is one of the real benefits of sharing prayer together with your spouse.  By allowing the deeper feelings to come to the surface, you are revealing parts of you that will create a strong bond.  This is what leads to greater intimacy and a stronger marriage.  Good communication is critical to a successful marriage.
  • We also humble ourselves both before the Lord and in front of our spouse.  This is hard, especially when you first start praying together, but it allows us to be honest and open in a way that allows growth in our marriage.  It also provides an atmosphere for mutual respect to blossom.
  • When you can bring problems or concerns before the Lord together in prayer, you are allowing God to work in both of you, developing a deeper trust and providing accountability to each other.
  • Lifting your marriage in prayer on a continual basis will keep it in the forefront of your mind and reaffirm your desire to make your spouse your second priority.
  • Praying for your spouse and petitioning God for his needs helps keep you from being self-centered and only requesting for yourself.

Real Life

Now, let me just say I am not the one who has it all together and prays everyday in my marriage.  In fact, I am truly blessed because my husband takes responsibility as the leader of our home and initiates praying together. I rarely do, which is disappointing to me.

We go through different seasons and different needs – sometimes we pray once a day, sometimes once a week, often times on the phone or even via email.  You see, there are no real “rules” for praying together – you just need to find what works for you as a couple.

My husband travels out of town 3 ½ days per week, so praying via text, email, and on the phone is a must for us in order to make it happen.  We could just throw in the towel since we are not living a “traditional” marriage with a regular 9-5 job with my husband home each night, but instead we got creative.  I’ve often tucked notes into his suitcase with prayers for him, letting him know I will be praying for him.

When he is in town, we often pray for a few minutes before the kids get up in the morning.  Simple, not thought out – yet powerful together.

How can you fit prayer into your marriage?

What is holding you back?

Where is one place you can make a change today to make it different?

7 Steps to a Better Marriage

14
Feb
2013

Marriage is hard work and at times you hit bumps in the road or find that you’ve lost the spark of years past. Never fear – even the happiest and most romantic of couples hit rough patches now and then. What makes relationships survive long-term is how couples overcome the hurdles and work together to improve their relationship.
 
In honor of Valentine’s Day and it’s important part of celebrating the Love in your life, I wanted to share some relationship secrets and tips that can help build your relationship all year long.  It can be easy to get caught up in the daily mundane routines and forget to care for your marriage, so consider small changes and choices that you can make starting today!  If you love these, you might want to read this post I shared a few months ago today.

Let the small stuff go

If your spouse is messy, squeezes the toothpaste in the middle, or some other minor annoying habit, just let it go. Consider how fortunate you are to have your honey by your side and what a small price it is to pay to be with the person you love.  You can also be sure, they have a few annoying habits that you display that drive them crazy too!

Be there

We live in such a busy age with tons of distractions. Cell phones, computers, kids, neighbors and work seem to soak up most of our time. One of the most important gifts you can give to your spouse is your time. Respond positively when your husband reaches out to you, even if you aren’t feeling your best. People in happy, healthy relationships stay focused on the here and now as much as possible, instead of dwelling on things of the past or worrying about the future.

Show more affection

As couples become comfortable with one another, they tend to be less affectionate. Every day, make an effort to show your partner affection. A simple touch, holding hands or an affectionate look can mean so much. A hidden love note in an unexpected place, a casual photo of you two tucked into a purse or wallet, a surprise flower, gift or dinner are great ways to show affection. Last week my husband surprised me with notes hidden all through the house – they made me feel special and let me know he cared, even when he wasn’t there with me.

Communicate

It doesn’t matter if you’re talking about the events of your day, sharing random thoughts, dreams and wishes or even being a sounding board for your husband; communication is vital to a happy and successful relationship. Not every talk has to be on a serious topic, but regular communication is a must.  If you feel your communication skills are lacking, consider reading, “How We Love” by Milan & Kay Yerkovich.  My small group is studying this book together and I can tell you, it has changed how I view my marriage and how MY actions can change it.  Remember, it isn’t so much about your spouse, you can’t change them.  But you can certainly change yourself, so learn more about how your patterns of behavior were formed and what you can do to meet the needs in your relationship.

Work on developing a deeper friendship

If you talk to couples who are in long-term relationships, they’ll tell you that not only are they partners, they are also friends. Spend time doing things you both enjoy while working towards deepening your friendship and you can’t go wrong.   Men connect by “doing” activities – so why not find an activity to share with your husband?  Hiking, golf, tennis, working out – the ideas are endless.  Even if it is not your first choice, just do it!

Compliment one another

It takes no effort to tell someone how beautiful, smart or talented you think they are. Compliments don’t have to be mushy; they just need to be truthful. Be free with your compliments and you’ll both be glad you did. I bet if you gave compliments more freely to your husband, they may in fact come back to you more frequently too.

Agree to disagree

Accept that relationships are not perfect and sometimes you will disagree. During these times, have an open mind and hear your husband out even if you disagree on the subject. By listening without interruption, you are showing them that you care.  I’ve learned  {the second time around} that disagreeing is just part of being a couple.  You cannot possibly agree on everything and allowing it to rest sometimes is the best for everyone.
 
A marriage is like a two-way street where both spouses have to share in making it grow and become deep-rooted. Even the smallest gestures can make a big difference when you approach them with an open mind and a loving heart.
 
How can you express your love to your husband – even after Valentine’s Day?
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