Four Ways to Keep a Christian Marriage Strong Throughout the Years

To Christians, marriage is more than a legal designation for two people who have chosen to live life together. It's a state ordained by God for a lifelong partnership; marriage is considered sacred and holy. If you and your spouse have entered into a Christian marriage and wish for that marriage to remain strong throughout the rest of your lives, there are some steps you can take to keep your relationship healthy and encourage it to keep growing.

Complete relationship workbooks together

There are a number of companies that make Christian workbooks for couples to work through together. These workbooks may require you to each answer questions and discuss your answers. As you work through them, you will learn more about your partner and what makes them unique. You'll grow to appreciate and understand their opinions and beliefs, even when they differ from your own.

You can find generalized workbooks that are designed to help deepen any Christian marriage. There are also workbooks designed for certain stages of life, such as when you're starting to think of having children or when your children move out and go to college. Communication is essential in any relationship, including a Christian marriage, and the workbooks will open the lines of communication while also providing Biblical guidance for the challenges you may be facing at the time.

See a counselor

Some people think of marriage counseling as only being for couples who are struggling. But in fact, it's best to see a counselor periodically before you start having problems in your marriage. A good Christian marriage counselor can help you identify small areas where your relationship may be under a bit of strain so you can make changes and improvements before you end up fighting with each other.

Many pastors and preachers offer marriage counseling. If your pastor does not offer counseling personally, he or she should be able to refer you to a good Christian counselor in your area.

Pray together

Praying together will help both of you remember that your marriage is a divinely inspired unity. It will give you both a sense of peace during times of trouble and also allow you to rejoice together as you thank the Lord for the many blessings in your life.

Praying together can seem intimidating at first if you are not used to speaking to the Lord in front of your spouse. Keep in mind that everyone feels vulnerable when they pray. Start by just saying a brief prayer together each night before you go to bed, and once you feel more comfortable doing that, build up to longer prayer sessions. You can use a devotional book to guide you if needed. There are many devotional books made for the sole purpose of guiding husbands and wives into prayer together.

Spend time with older Christian couples who you admire.

Are there older couple in your church whose relationship you admire? Reach out to these people and spend more time around them. You could invite them over for dinner and board games at your place, or sit with them at your next church dinner. Don't be embarrassed to tell them that you're impressed with how happy they seem in their marriage. Ask if they have any advice to a younger couple who wants just as long and happy of a marriage. Most happily married couples will be glad to offer you some wise words of advice.

If you follow the tips above, you'll have a better chance at a long, happy Christian marriage. Since marriage is for life, there are sure to be some bumps along the way. However, with the help of the Lord, and perhaps a good counselor, you will work your way through them and find that your relationship grows even stronger over time.