Saturday, February 13, 2010

Marriage Success Key 5: Pray Together

This concludes our messages on marriage. Join us tomorrow for our Online Marriage Conference on Blog Talk Radio

Also, visit our new marriage blog. There you will receive helpful insight on developing a marriage of purpose.

Many of you reading this article may be married to an unbeliever. If so, you may not be able to pray with your spouse—but you can pray for your spouse, and for your successful marriage! As mentioned earlier, you can be a Christian example to your mate. Scripture gives this instruction to wives who have non-Christian husbands. "Wives, likewise, be submissive to your own husbands, that even if some do not obey the word, they, without a word, may be won by the conduct of their wives" (1 Peter 3:1). Your loving, giving, Christian example can go a long way toward positively influencing your mate. Notice the emphasis is on your conduct, not on trying to argue your mate into your religion!

Of course, if both you and your spouse pray, you can pray together. When my wife and I pray together, I normally begin the prayer, then after a short while nudge my wife. She will then pray, and when she is done I will conclude our prayer together. It is just amazing how intimate and personal thoughts come out in our shared prayers. In that way, we are sharing with one another, and with our God.

One of my wife’s favorite expressions is, "Let’s pray about that." I appreciate her willingness to involve God in our marriage and in our life together. We all need to acknowledge God and our Savior in every aspect of our lives. Scripture exhorts us: "Trust in the Lord with all your heart, and lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways acknowledge Him, and He shall direct your paths" (Proverbs 3:5–6).

A marriage requires work, effort and continual nourishment to be successful. It means giving all you can in following your God-given responsibilities as a husband or as a wife. There will be obstacles, differences, and even conflicts. But with God’s help, you can improve your marriage—and even save your marriage if it is in danger!

Ask God to help you apply these principles in your own life. Remember, you cannot force your spouse to change—you can only change yourself. But your example of love and service can be a tremendous influence on your mate. And remember, you cannot do it on your own. You need the help of your Savior in your own life. As the Apostle Paul wrote, "I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me" (Philippians 4:13). May God bless you, your marriage and your family as you strive to live by His word!

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