One of the things that I have noticed in my 8+ years of ministry is on the topic of marriage. It is obvious that marriage today in under attack. I have personally seen many marriages struggle and end in divorce. With this in mind, I began to research and study marriage. As a result of this study I have personally identified 12 keys to living in a thriving and successful marriage. While I am not by any means an expert on marriage, I do believe these 12 keys can transform an unhealthy marriage into a healthy marriage. Below are these 12 keys….
- Stay committed & faithful – Fight for your marriage at all costs. Do your absolute best to say committed and faithful to each other.
- Have a weekly date night – There is one commonality in all successful and thriving marriages verses unsuccessful marriage. This one communality is a weekly date night. Life gets busy when we get married. We must remember to enjoy each other and have a weekly date together just as husband and wife.
- Surrender & pray individually – It is important that both husband and wife individually must be totally surrendered to the Lord. God knows what is best for us. With this being said, we need to be fully surrendered to Him.
- Find & pour into each other’s love language – Every person responds to love differently. You must find your spouse’s love languages and pour directly into that love language. The love languages are:
- Physical Touch
- Words of Affirmation
- Acts of Service
- Quality Time
- Develop healthy finances – Struggles with money can cause major difficultly in a marriage. It is important to have proper financial Biblical training. My wife and I personally recommend the Dave Ramsey Program. It is a great Biblical program.
- Get active in the local church – We need the church more than we realize. It is important that married couples are active in their church. This includes a weekly worship service, a small group and serving in the church.
- Walk in forgiveness – You are human and you are married you to a human. With this in mind, I would encourage you to learn to daily walk in forgiveness. It is important not to hold grudges!
- Never start over – I know many couples that got married years ago but they are still at the starting line. When you get married, the marriage life begins and it is like a race. However when you fall and make mistakes, you do not need to start over at the beginning. Pick up where you where before you fell and keep walking together. Grow and learn from your mistakes.
- Pray together – It is very important to pray together! I would encourage you to pray daily with your spouse.
- Keep Christ central in all you do – You should keep Christ first in your life and your marriage. But also it is important to keep Christ central in your marriage. Seek Him for every decision, conflict, problem, etc.
- Be careful of criticism – Only use healthy criticism when handling problems. Sometimes we need to convey our feelings and address issues. I would encourage you to only use loving and healthy words when addressing your spouse in areas that are bothering you.
- Have no secrets – Secrets are no fun. Never keep anything from your spouse (with the obvious exception of a surprise gift or birthday party). You were created to be one flesh together. Share everything.
– By Kevin McDonald