“The man who finds a wife finds a treasure, and he receives favor from the Lord” (Proverbs 18:22 (NLT).
The groom and his bride beamed as they faced each other to exchange vows. The glimmer of new rings couldn’t compete with the glow of their love. Friends and family smiled too.
But we all knew that after the honeymoon, life’s pressures would pile on. And the meshing of two wills is neither easy nor romantic. When sparkle gives way to sparks, how do couples keep love’s flame burning?
Treasure Your Gift
When the process of becoming one loses its shine, we need to remember—marriage is a gift from God. Not only do spouses support and strengthen one another, they sharpen each other. When sparks fly, perhaps God is using our partner to polish us.
“As iron sharpens iron, so a friend sharpens a friend” (Proverbs 27:17 NLT).
Hebrews 12:11 says God uses difficulties to train us so we can enjoy the peaceful fruit of righteousness. Viewing marriage as sacred training carries us through the trying times.
Learn the Dance
Beautiful ballroom dance partners move as one. But they didn’t start that way. The process of becoming one in marriage forces us to face our selfish sides in ways we never had to as singles. It’s no longer about what is best for me or even what is best for my mate, but what’s best for us.
When I had roommates, I had my stuff and my roommate had hers. I decided how to use and care for my stuff. When I married, my stuff became our stuff. And my husband didn’t always have the same regard for my our stuff!
When I was single, I withdrew to my room when I needed space. In marriage, my room was also his room. When I was single, I chose my own schedule. After marriage, I had to coordinate with my husband before committing myself or our home.
In marriage, God uses our differences to shape us into the image of His Son. Our human nature resists this refinement. But God is teaching us how to dance in the power of His Spirit.
Secure Your Friendship
Secure your marriage by protecting and deepening your friendship with each other after marriage. Friendship is worth scheduling. Spend time connecting eye to eye and sharing burdens and laughs. Take walks, play, pray, and do something you both like.
Don’t let the demands of life steal closeness.
Date each other. Pull for each other. Always remember you and your spouse are on the same team. If God grants children, carve out one-on-one time. Don’t let your children become the hub of your relationship.
It’s normal for feelings to fluctuate. But solid marriages aren’t erected on fickle feelings. As we build our relationships in Christ’s power on the foundation of truth, we discover marriage to be a greenhouse for security, satisfaction, and sanctification.
“Two are better than one…. Though one person may be overpowered by another, two people can resist one opponent. A triple-braided rope is not easily broken” (Ecclesiastes 4:9, 12 GW).
Order your copy of Debbie W. Wilson’s Little Women, Big God.
Debbie W. Wilson is an experienced Bible study teacher, ministry leader, and speaker. She has over 35 years of expertise, training, and teaching in the areas of relationships, Bible study, counseling, and discipleship. She and her husband Larry founded Lighthouse Ministries, a nonprofit biblical counseling, coaching, and Bible study ministry. Find free resources to refresh your faith and connect with Debbie at debbieWwilson.com.
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