Developing a Godly Marriage
Written by Phyllis R. McKnight: March 22, 2015
Marriage can indeed be a wonderful journey. This is not to say that every day is easy or perfect. I’m an old fashion girl with old fashion values and still believe good marriages are possible. Below are a few tips I have learned over the past 35 years:
1. Marriage must start out right. Both parties should have a true commitment to God and each other.
2. Maintaining a good marriage requires constant working on key elements. Mutual respect, commitment, effective communication, trust and a good dose of genuine friendship are a must. Then the love “stuff” comes automatically, easy and will last a lifetime. Through good times and bad times, in sickness and in health, during lean times and prosperous times, during trials and temptations, good marriages can stand the test of time.
3. Maintaining a good marriage requires time "alone" together. No family, friends, or children allowed. While rearing children, building careers, meeting the demands of family, friends and church, you must still make each other a priority.
4. Establish a regular date night for each other. This could be as simple as taking a drive alone, going for a smoothie, enjoying a night at the movies or an elegant night of dinning. Date night establishes that your partner is important enough to include in your regular schedule. Additionally, it keeps both partners in tune with each other despite life changes and challenges.
5. Never be afraid to say you were wrong or that you are sorry. Don’t let today’s sun go down on yesterday’s wrath.
6. Do No Harm. Do not embarrass each other publicly. Respect each other in words and deeds.
7. Seek out ways to have fun together. What did you enjoy doing together before you were married? What stress reducing activities appeal to you as a couple?
8. Put no other “human” above your mate. Leave and cleave to each other only.
9. Ask God to illuminate your faults and be willing to change. You don’t need to pray about your husband's faults because they are uncontrollable by you. You can really only change yourself and that in itself is really hard work. Only God or experiences can change hearts and behaviors. Seek him on the changes you need to make.
10. “Defraud ye not one another.” Do not remove your emotional, physical, spiritual, mental or sexual support from each other.
11. Present a united force to the children. Work through your differences regarding the children and present a united front.
12. Work consistently together to maintain order in your home, finances and heart. Home should be where the heart is physically and emotionally. Don’t buy more than you can afford.
13. Accept that maintaining a good marriage will always be hard work. Each day you wake up and breathe, you will have to show up ready to work at it. Marriage is a word only and it does not have the power to manage itself.
Finally, marriages are only as good as the efforts both partners invest in them.