I recently wrote an article, “Build An Indestructible Marriage,” for the June 2017 issue of The Fort Wayne Lutheran newspaper. Please go to www.myfwl.org to find the article on page 11. The article is also shown below.
Everyone who gets married wants that marriage to be satisfying and rewarding, and couples embark on this journey with hopes for lifelong happiness. Furthermore, God said, “The two will become one,” and God never intended for that oneness to be broken.
Not only do as many as 50% of marriages end in divorce, I also believe that a majority of Christian couples live in unhappy marriages. But marriage doesn’t have to turn into a daily grind of hurts and slights. On the contrary, a Christian marriage can be a blessing that brings out the best in you—and your spouse—each day.
A desire for a satisfying relationship is what propels a Christian marriage in a positive direction. However, the desire alone is not enough. A healthy, happy marriage is built—or a marriage in trouble crumbles—day by day through the specific, small actions that show love or disdain for a spouse.
Whether it is positive or negative habits, both significantly impact your marital satisfaction. There’s a simple reason for many marital problems, most Christian spouses do not have the practical knowledge and simple tools needed to build a satisfying marriage. No one ever taught them how, and they may not have had good role models in their own household growing up. Many Christian relationships suffer needlessly because spouses simply do not possess the sound Proverbial wisdom and simple skills for achieving the goal of a happy marriage.
The good news is that anyone can learn to develop the habits that create a gratifying marriage! Proverbs 4:5 speaks to every spouse seeking a satisfying Christian marriage, “Get skillful and Godly Wisdom, get understanding” (AMPLIFIED). The Bible encourages, “correct your habits and change your actions for the better” (Jeremiah 18:11 AMPLIFIED). The central theme for happy couples can be summarized in three words—HEALTHY, GODLY HABITS! When two spouses learn how to demonstrate Godly words and actions on a daily basis, marital bliss becomes a reality!
Understand that when a spouse develops healthy Godly habits, they are saying strongly and loudly, “I care about you!” Serving God and serving others, including your spouse, are actions viewed as a privilege not an obligation because of the love of Christ. Changing lifelong unhealthy habits requires tremendous effort, so be patient with yourself as you strive for improvement in your Christian life and marriage.
I have written a Christian marriage book, and with the help of my literary agent, I am seeking a Christian publisher. Like the wisdom from Proverbs, my book will provide workable solutions to common marital problems and teach skills spouses need to maintain a healthy, happy Christian marriage. For some practical wisdom skills and logical ideas, please check my website, www.DrRandallSchroeder.com, where I share Practical Wisdom for marriage, parents, and life under “Categories.” On Wednesdays, I post a blog on practical wisdom in one of those three areas that is also posted on my Facebook, LinkedIn, and Twitter accounts. Simple, Godly habits manifested on a daily basis can make a profound positive difference in our lives and relationships.
Dr. Randy Schroeder is a former professor of Pastoral Counseling at Concordia Theological Seminary, a Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist, a Licensed Clinical Social Worker, and now has a private counseling practice at Cornerstone Lutheran Church in Carmel, Indiana.