June 20, 2016

Marriage can be difficult. It is also no secret that marriage is under attack in our society today.

For some the honeymoon season can end, well… at the honeymoon! But even if you are at odds with your spouse and feel that all hope is lost do not give up, there is always hope.

We live in a world that is full of pit falls, traps and battles for men when it comes to purity and humility. But Jesus can give you the strength to overcome, if you allow Him. He can give you the power to live with your wife in an understanding way, to serve her and love her as Christ loves the Church.

God has a design for marriage that can be both fun and fulfilling.

Here are 5 things we recommend to strengthen your marriage.

1. Pray – Prayer is the most important thing a husband and wife can do together. Prayer is a powerful weapon against the enemy and it helps create intimacy in a relationship. Make it a priority to pray together in every season, but when you feel like you are growing apart spend time in prayer and if possible, share the battles and struggles you are dealing with internally. Communication is vital to healthy relationships.

2. Date – Men, you were made with a conquering mentality and that is God given. However, it can be detrimental to your marriage if you believe that you won at the altar and you stop putting anymore effort into your marriage. You need to date your wife. Even if money is tight, find something cheap or free and fun to do. In the end it is the time which is more valuable and it communicates value to your wife. Have fun, it will trigger memories of when you were dating, it will release endorphins and will help you develop deeper intimacy. Laughter is one of the easiest ways to induce endorphin release. It can also help your sex life.

3. Sex – Speaking of sex. Whether it is porn or lust in general, as men our natural drive for sex can become unhealthy and damaging if we allow our flesh to rule over the Spirit. Porn is not something to take lightly. Viewing porn is no different than participating in the sex act you are watching. Since porn triggers the same chemical response in your body as some drugs, you are likely to become addicted and with it comes realms of depravity and depression that can spiral you out of control. It also creates a consuming hunger for sex that is unrealistic and most often depraved. It is important to cultivate a healthy sex life with your wife and to flee sexual immorality. We can not overstate the importance of fleeing from sexual sin, especially pornography in our technological society.

4. Humility – A relationship is strong when two people are humble and willing to admit their weaknesses. Pride really is the source of our downfalls. But it takes two. Both people must be willing to meet in the middle, discuss their differences like adults and be willing to ultimately compromise in a way that is fair and healthy. This will lead to both people feeling valued and understood. You shouldn’t expect to get your way every time, that is childish and immature. A man and woman of God that are walking in the Spirit will resemble Christ, they will serve each other and will put the other person’s needs ahead of their own. Humility and a servant’s heart are probably the best safeguard for your marriage. Also, were are commanded to live this way in scripture.

5. Communication – Communication is key and humility leads to healthy dialogue and healthy relationships. If you both still can’t figure things out you may need to humble yourself and get help. Not all counseling can be good though. You need to make sure that the person you are seeking counsel from is rooted in the Bible and they will give you Biblical advice, not cultural excuses. They need to have a track record of leading people to Biblical reconciliation, pursing Christ above cultural trappings and giving healthy advice that allows for healing. Make sure you do your due diligence and don’t trust your most important relationship into the hands of just any person.

Marriage can be something that is fun, freeing and healthy… but it takes work. Marriage is a living thing and it must be cared for and nurtured. The Bible really is the best source for life principles and when we obey God’s Word we will find that God really does give us life to the fullest.

“The thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy; I have come that they may have life, and have it to the full.” – John 10:10

We are here as a resource and support for your journey, know that in Christ you are more than conquerers.

Article contributed by Matt Cote.