Keep God FirstIs God first in your life?.
Think about it? What are you focusing on right now? God designed this plan and it works perfectly!.
Move your priorities around and watch chaos begin, guaranteed! If you desire a solid marriage, build it on God's foundation; constantly study God's wisdom on Christian marriage, the roles of husband and wife, and strengthening your walk with the Lord. This results in a firm foundation for your marriage and life.
Keep God first in your life always!! This means remaining faithful to God and His Word. This means diligently seeking to understand and obey the scriptures in ones life. Do you wonder how this works? By walking in constant obedience to God you will have less opportunity to make the "wrong decisions" and "reap" unpleasant side effects in your life. Following Christ does not mean that you never face trials, but rather when trials come into your life you will be equipped to understand and handle them. Following Christ is not easy though! It is much more than saying your Christian. Your life must be an example of the Christian life. If you ever wonder if what you "want" to do is the "Christian" way, ask yourself this question! Could I see Jesus doing this or acting in this manner?
Unless the Lord builds the house,
they labor in vain who build it.
Proverbs 24:3 Through wisdom a house is built, And by understanding is established;
Joshua 1:8 This Book of Law shall not depart from your mouth, but you shall meditate in it day and night, that you may observe to do according to all that is written in it. For then you will make your way prosperous, and then you will have good success.
Colossians 3:1-2 If then you were raised with Christ, seek those things which are above, where Christ is, sitting at the right hand of God. Set your mind on things above, not on things on the earth.*
It’s a Lovingly and Inspiring Thing to Observe what the Happiness, mutual Confidence, and Understanding Existing between a Happily Married Couple will do for each of them. We should know that God is Interested Enough in each One of His Children to Guide in a Matter as Important as the Choice of Husband or Wife is a Beautiful and Encouraging Thought.
Marriage: Was Ordained to Promote Social Order and Human Happiness; to Prevent Irregular Affections; and through well-Regulated Families, to Transmit Trust, Purity, and Holiness From age to age.
A Wife who Follows the Bible’s Counsel will Co-operate in all Things and in Respect of her Husband’s Responsibilities, Look up to him as Head of the Home. When True Love Exists between the two, Mutual Consideration for the Wishes and Desires of the Other will be seen on every hand.
We should make Our Marriage a Three-way Relationship= Husband, Wife, and God. If in Marriage Each Partner can seek out the best in the Other Enlarging Encouragingly on these good Points, he or she will receive rewarding Love and Life-Long Appreciation in return.
Expressions of Confidence and Faith always bring out the very best in another. Since Love thrives on these Positive Virtues, use them Lavishly. “Many People Wonder how they may distinguish True Love from Infatuation”, Test your Love by noting whether your Attitude could be Characterized by this General Principle:--A general Interest in all the Other says Just because it is she. –-Common tastes, Ideals and Stands without Serious Clashes. –-A Strong desire to be with her, and a greater Happiness when you are with her than when you are with any one else. –-A Feeling of unrest and dissatisfaction when you are Separated. –-A genuine Comradeship at all times and Willingness to give and take. -–Eagerness to Consider her Opinion and Judgment. –-A feeling of Pride when you Compare her with any one else. –-A Wealth of Things to do and say when you are together. –-She appeals to the finest that is in you and always bring out the best in you. –-The Awakening of Sex attraction. True Love Endures and grows. High and Noble in Character, it Stands the Test of the time rather than being merely a “Flash in the Pan”.
Some Questions which Individuals Miss out when Preparing for a Relationship or Marriage:
- Do you have any Common Interest and things you Like to do together?.
- Are you proud of this Prospective Partner, with nothing really to be ashamed of or apologize for?.
- Do you have a Strong desire to Please him or her even if it means giving up your own Preferences?.
- Do you have absolute Faith and Trust in what he says and does?.
- Does she/he have the Qualities that you want for your Children?.
- Do your Parents and your Friends admire the one you are Considering and approve of this Match?
- Can you disagree and still be agreeable and Love and respect each Other?.
- Do you have a Good Many Friends in Common?.
- Do Troubles and Crises when they come push you apart or Pull you together?.
- Have you Found yourself already thinking in Terms of you Two rather than just of you yourself alone?.
- Do you already, at List in your own Mind, have the Wedding Planned and the Home Figured out?. These are good Questions, which will be of great aid in Properly Evaluating the depth of the Feelings you have for each other.
Factors which have actually Contributed to Success in Relationship/Marriage:
- The Length of acquaintance should Ideally be 2 or More years.
- The Engagement should Last Six Months or More.
- The Best age for Marriage in Husband, Twenty-two and Over; the Wife, Twenty and Over.
- Close Attachment and lack of Conflicts with Parents.
- Church Attendance two or four times a month.
- A Similar Family Back ground.
- Good Health.
- A Religious Marriage Service.
- Parents who are Happily Married.
- Religious Training at home.
- Adequate Sex Instruction.
- Many Friends before Marriage.
- Sunday School Attendance after 18 years of age.
GROWING OLDER GRACEFULLYIt is a beautiful thing to see a Couple who, having shared their Love through Life, Come to the Sunset years together with Respect, Appreciation, and Devotion for each other as Strong as Ever. Marriage in the Older years should be a Wonderful Companionship. Life is different now from what it was in youth; The Responsibilities are not the same, for the Children have grown up and Formed Homes of their own. Life now is Filled with Happy Memories, and the Hopes for the Future are not so much Hopes for Personal Accomplishment as they once were, but now are Bound up in the Strong and Promising Lives of Children and Grand Children. ** I know I still Love you because when I have any great Happiness my Immediate impulse is to find you and share it with you. I also know I still Love you because when am in Trouble I want you first of all. But the Main reason why I still Love you, and I know I do, is that I’m sure, Perfectly Sure, you would always Stand by me, no matter what was done to me or said about me, no matter what was done to me or Said or did; no matter what Happened, I know I could Count on you. You wouldn’t even ask Questions. You would Just be for me no matter or who was against me, and for me till Death. Such a Relationship is Truly a Beautiful thing. ** To really Learn how to grow Old is Perhaps one of the most difficult Lessons in the Art of Living. Many Look to their Sunset years as Something to be dreaded and held Off as Long as Possible. Why should Humanity Feel this way? –-Ripe Fruit is sweeter far than Green Fruit. –-Harvest time is a Happier and more rewarding time than Seed time. –-The Completion of a Job well done is more Satisfying than Launching of the Project. And so it would seem that Old age Ought to be Happier more Satisfying and Rewarding than Youth. ** Only a Christian Man or Woman can really achieve the Highest Heights of happiness as he has to more and more with his Memories. Let him who would Grow Older Gracefully Maintain his High Standards of a Sacred Book in which he believes and of a holy Life he has taken as his Examples in all Things. Through Daily Strength to Press on to his Life’s goals. His Life then will be a growth in Grace and Happy Experience.
How to Create a Happy Marriage
Don't Depend on Marriage to Bring You HappinessOne of the myths about marriage is that marriage can make you happy. That's not true. Marriage alone cannot bring you happiness. Your happiness both as an individual and as a married partner must come from within yourself. Being married can add to your happiness, but it is not and can not be the primary source of your happiness. Here are strategies to help you create a happier you and a happy marriage. A Happy Marriage Comes From Within
- Like yourself.
- Be yourself.
- Be nice to one another.
- Show mutual respect.
- Be supportive of each other.
- Agree to have fair fights.
- Each evening, share with one another three happy things that you noticed during the day. Talk about why these moments of happiness occurred.
- Both of you write down how you want to be remembered. Talk with your spouse about how the way you are living your lives helps or takes away from what's important to you both.
- Make a list of things that make you happy such as a sunny day, a hot bath, a child's laugh. Create ways to include these happy times in your life more often.
- Do a random act of kindness not only for a stranger each day, but also for one another. Don't talk about these acts of kindness with one another. They are for your own personal self-esteem and growth.
- Fill your own emotional needs.
- Compliment and affirm your spouse.
Don't Change Your MateYou can't change your spouse. The only person you can change is yourself. Here are some resources to help you cope when you believe that change is necessary. What to do When Your Spouse Doesn't Want Change What can you do when faced with a spouse who has a serious behavior that could potentially destroy your marriage and your spouse won't change, isn't willing to work on improving your marriage, or won't seek marriage counseling? Here's help on how you can deal with a difficult marriage when only one of you wants change. Relocation Strategies An issue that many marriages face is whether to stay or to move when a job opportunity is offered to one spouse. One of the many consequences of relocating a family is possible damage to your marriage relationship. A marriage can be in jeopardy if one of you enjoys change, and the other is more traditional and less open to risk.
Questions to Discuss
- What is the quality of life at the new location?
- Will there be career opportunities for the career-interrupted partner?
- What is the worst thing that can happen because of this relocation?
- What is the possibility of this happening to us?
- If this did happen to us, could we both live with the outcome?
- What do we fear won't happen?
- What are the benefits to our not making this move?
- What are the benefits in making this move?
Issues to Face
- Loss of your friends, family and current support systems.
- Interruption or loss of career for one of you.
- Dealing with different lifestyles and customs in your new environment.
- A sense of being out of control or in limbo.
- Making new friends.
- Coping with uncertainty.
Coping Skills Needed
- Be patient with one another.
- Have a plan. Keep it flexible.
- Willingness to give all members of the family time to adjust. This usually takes about a year.
- Recognition that the transition phase may be difficult. Studies have shown that approximately one third of relocations fail because members of a family are unhappy.
- Research the new area before making the decision to move. Be realistic about cost of living and financial concerns.
- Think of the change as a great adventure and a way to enrich your marriage and family.
- Talk with one another about your values, needs, and expectations of the change.
- Accept that there are emotional aspects to relocating and work together to reduce distress.
- Explore your new location together.
There is no doubt about it. Moving is stressful. However, if the two of you make the decision to relocate together, and has shared your expectations and fears, your marriage can survive the move.
Changing Your Own Bad Habits
Once you realize that you have habits that are legitimately annoying and irritating your spouse and hurting your marriage, the obligation to change is in your court.
Tips for Changing Your Own Bad Habits
- Don't believe the old saying, "You can't teach an old dog new tricks." You can break a bad habit if you really want to.
- Be honest with yourself. Do you have some annoying, nasty habits that are hurting your marriage?
- Share your feelings about the annoying behaviors with your spouse. Stick to "I feel..." statements.
- Include your spouse as you brainstorm solutions to your bad habits.
- Many people find that replacing a bad habit with a positive behavior is easier than just stopping the bad habit.
- Don't try to change more than one irritating habit at a time.
- Share your personal goals and expectations with your mate.
- Share with your mate that you need support and affirmation, not criticism or nagging.
- Don't be too hard on yourself if you slip up now and then. But don't give up either or continually make excuses for not achieving your goal.
- Talk with your spouse about how to reward yourself for quitting a nasty habit. Keep the reward reasonable and achievable both from a monetary and a time perspective.
Season of Change
You've heard the concept that the only person that you can change is yourself. The Lenten season is a perfect time or kairos for making changes in who you are. Here is a Lenten Reflection for couples.
Being There for One Another When You've Lost So Much There are lots of articles written about disaster preparedness, but what happens to a marriage relationship after the headlines?
Here's how to be there for one another, how to cope with the devastation you see around you, how to deal with the inevitable changes, and coping with the practical aspects of surviving a disaster.
Realities to FaceAfter a disaster such as a hurricane, tornado, flood, earthquake, tsunami, or fire, a married couple has several realities to face.
- The first reality is the realization that your treasured possessions are gone forever. What has taken you years to build has been destroyed in minutes.
- The second reality is that you need to be there for one another as you rebuild your lives and make decisions as to what you can and can't replace.
Acknowledge Your Sense of Loss
It is important to acknowledge your sense of loss. It is okay to grieve the loss of your material things.
- Although there is a natural grieving process following the disaster, it will be different for each of you.
- How deeply you mourn the loss of an item will depend on what memories are attached to it.
- Give yourself and your spouse permission and time to grieve.
- Be supportive and non-judgmental. If your spouse wants to save a scorched or soggy Christmas ornament, don't make a big deal out of the decision.
Accept the feelings that you are each experiencing. Triggered by the sight of an article in a movie or store, anger may still well up inside you months, even years, after the disaster.
- After a disaster, it is normal to have feelings of disbelief, grief, anxiety, sadness, anger, disorientation, numbness, fear, depression, frustration, powerlessness, suspicion, being overwhelmed, disappointment, panic, bitterness, resentment, guilt, hopelessness, and shock.
- The stages of death and dying are often experienced after a disaster or major loss, whether it be the loss of an item, hopes, or dreams. The stages are denial, anger, bargaining, depression, acceptance.
Start a Journal Together.Write down not only what you are doing after the disaster, but also record your feelings and random thoughts.
Being There For Each OtherRemember that although you may have lost a great deal, you still have each other.
- In the midst of the chaos in your lives, make time each day to reconnect with one another and to share your feelings and thoughts.
- Listen to one another!
- Hug and touch each other more often.
- Take walks with each other every day.
- Make getting enough rest a top priority.
- Find something to do that you both enjoy.
- Use humor and find things to laugh about with each other.
- Eat healthy foods.
- Be flexible.
- Affirm one another with praise and appreciation.
- Give your spouse space if needed.
Importance of RitualsDon't ignore the rituals of your lives. Rituals can help you and your family heal by reaffirming the bonds between you.
Celebrate birthdays, anniversaries, and special holidays even if you can't celebrate them in the way you normally would.
What to do When Your Spouse Doesn't Want Change?
Does your spouse complain about not feeling well but won't see a doctor? Does your spouse make plans for a romantic evening or getaway with you and then ruin it by being too tired or not feeling well?
Does your spouse talk about spending less money, or eating more healthy foods, or spending more time with the family, or getting more exercise, and then not follow through with those plans?
Does your spouse make promises that aren't kept? Does your spouse acknowledge that there are problems in your relationship but refuses to change behaviors or see a marriage counselor with you?
Growing FrustrationThe frustration of your spouse's lack of follow through on good intentions, or saying one thing and then doing another, or breaking promises can slowly erode both the emotional and physical intimacy in your marriage.
This frustration can be heightened if your spouse refuses to seek marriage counseling with you.
What can you do when faced with a spouse who has a serious behavior (gambles, drinks, spends too much money, has a very negative attitude, can't keep a job, is emotionally or physically abusive, doesn't make time for the children or spouse, is unfaithful, etc.) that could potentially destroy your marriage and your spouse won't change, isn't willing to work on improving your marriage, or won't seek marriage counseling? Although there are no easy answers for this type of situation in a marriage, here's help on how you can deal with a difficult marriage when only one of you wants change.
No Easy AnswersThere are no easy answers when your spouse can see no reason for change or doesn't want your marriage to change. Some situations can be dealt with and other situations are deal breakers.
Only you know what you can tolerate and still be emotionally healthy yourself.
Note: Do not endanger yourself or your children by remaining in an abusive situation.
Know YourselfGet to know yourself and look at your own attitudes, behaviors, expectations, hopes, dreams, memories, concerns, behavior triggers, fears, etc. Ask yourself how long you think you can stay in your marriage if things don't improve. Consider individual counseling to prevent feeling depressed or helpless, to understand your role in the conflict in your marriage, and to clarify your plans for your future.
Decide which of your spouse's negative behaviors you can live with and which ones are deal breakers. Decide if you are able to adjust to the irritating and hurtful situations in your marriage or not.
Do they change over time?
Importance of Sharing Your ExpectationsToday, when asked, many married couples would say they expect companionship, intimacy, and sharing of feelings. Sharing your expectations with your spouse is critical if you want a successful marriage. When your expectations aren't shared with each other, disillusionment will probably become an everyday experience.
Long Term MarriagesOne of the joys of reading our hometown newspaper is seeing the large number of couples who are celebrating their 50th plus anniversaries. “Never before have so many couples been married long enough to experience such a variety of life-changes that occur in the later stages of marriage."
These long-term couples probably expected hard work, the challenge of raising children, and happiness, but not financial difficulties, unresolved issues, lost dreams, or ill health. Yet, they dealt effectively with the changes, both expected and unexpected, in their lives.
Surviving the Test of TimeCouples who survive the test of time are those who can adapt to change and who know what one another expects.
The Importance of Compliments in Your Marriage
Make sure that you sincerely compliment your spouse at least once every day. Look for things you can comment on that you haven't mentioned before.
Impact of Compliments on Your MarriageWhen you give sincere encouragement and compliments to your spouse, several things are accomplished.
- Your spouse's self-confidence is increased.
- Your own self-worth is increased.
- The friendship between the two of you is strengthened.
The Difference Between Flattery and ComplimentsIt is important that your compliments are sincere and honest. When they are not, your comments turn into flattery which is untrue or insincere praise. Flattery is usually received with negativity and is often perceived as being manipulative.
Quotes About Compliments and MarriageSteve Goodier: "Sincere compliments cost nothing and can accomplish so much. In ANY relationship, they are the applause that refreshes."
Les and Leslie Parrott:"The most important element of romantic passion for both husbands and wives is to feel special. Not only do they want to feel sexually attractive to their mates, but they want to know they are appreciated. Compliments feel good--both to give and to receive. So, to paraphrase a James Taylor song, 'Shower the person you love with compliments.'"
Gary and Barbara Rosberg: "Mark Twain once said, 'I can live a whole month on one compliment.' Just think about the life we can bring to a marriage with an ever flowing stream of affirmation. Hearty affirmation is a key ingredient in unconditional love. It's like a magnet: It draws us in; it attracts us."
Richard Carlson: "The power of a compliment or a few kind, sexy words can be overwhelming! Think back to all of the things that you used to say to your sweetheart when you were dating."
Kindness in Marriage - - Showing Kindness Shows You Care
Without kindness in your relationship, your marriage won't last. Here are some ways to check up on yourself to see how kind you are in your marriage:
- You say "yes" a lot more than "no" when your spouse asks for a favor or for help.
- You are willing to share that last piece of pie or cookie because being kind is being generous.
- You listen with your heart.
- You don't interrupt your spouse.
- You are polite and say "please" and "thank you" when speaking to your spouse.
- You don't think it is old fashioned to open a heavy door for your spouse or to share your jacket if your mate is shivering.
- You show respect for your mate.
- You let your spouse know how much he/she is appreciated.
- You don't roll your eyes when your spouse says something you disagree with or something you think is trivial or boring.
- You routinely look for the good in your spouse.
- You are helpful.
- You don't allow unkind comments to flow from your lips.
- You make sure that your teasing is fun and not hurtful.
Talk With Each Other - - Not At Each OtherThink back to when the two of you were dating one another. Did you have times when you had nothing to say to one another? Probably not.
When a couple reaches the point of not having anything to say to one another, their marriage is in serious trouble. Here are some tips on why conversation in a marriage is so essential, and topics to talk about.
Andre Maurois, French novelist and essayist, wrote, "A happy marriage is a long conversation which always seems too short."
Most folks don't marry someone they can't talk with. A good conversation is when you are both contributing to the conversation. When you are having a good conversation with your spouse, you are both giving each other your undivided attention.
What to Talk About:
- Your spouse's hobbies or other interests.
- Plans for a future trip together.
- Memories of your childhoods.
- Movies or television shows.
- Things you would like to experience or places you would like to visit.
- Something you learned during the day or something you did differently or new that day.
- Discuss your thoughts and feelings about the day.
- Ask some questions that begin with "if you could", or "Have you ever", or "do you believe."
The language of flowers is a beautiful one. Knowing the meaning behind a particular flower can make giving flowers more meaningful.
Meaning of Flowers Sorted by Word / Phrase
Here's an alphabetical listing of phrases and words with their associated flowers.
The Meaning of Flowers
Throughout history, lovers have given flowers to each other as a token of their longing, devotion, and love. The meaning of a flower that you give as a gift is dependent on how special a flower is to your spouse and whatever you want that flower to represent.
Since ancient times, the rose has been a symbol of love, romance, passion, and perfection. Show your spouse your love and sensitivity by selecting a rose to give by its name and not just by its color or fragrance.
Wedding Anniversary Flowers
Some couples like to give traditional anniversary flowers on their wedding anniversary or use the traditional flower in the decorations of an anniversary celebration. Here is a listing of the flowers often associated with the 1st through 50th wedding anniversaries.
Humor GuidelinesYes, laughter is a great medicine, but teasing and joking in your marriage can be hurtful, too. Here are guidelines for keeping the humor in your marriage healthy.
Laughter and Humor
One of the great joys of marriage is the time that you, as a couple, spend laughing together and enjoying your sense of humor. Here are the benefits of laughter and humor, and ways to increase laughter in your marriage.
Couples who can laugh at themselves or at their situation usually feel stronger when problems arise. Do you and your spouse laugh together?
April Fool's Thoughts
Could your tricks and jokes hurt your marriage?
Do You Wish the Teasing Would Stop?
Even if said in jest, some jokes just aren't funny. For many of people, some areas of their lives are off limits when it comes to teasing and joking. Here are some guidelines for teasing.
Having a Good Laugh
A look at how humor is a natural part of your marriage and how to keep the humor balanced and not harmful.
Married couples need romance in their lives too!
How to Plan a Romantic Dinner at Home for Your Spouse
You don't have to have a special occasion to host a romantic dinner for your spouse. Set aside the excuse you can't cook.
Winter Blahs in Your Marriage
If your marriage is suffering from the winter blahs, here are ways to beat the winter blahs in your marriage relationship.
Simple Ways to Be Romantic
Being romantic isn't just for couples who are dating. Here are simple ways you can be romantic in your marriage all through the year.
Top Romantic Comedies
If you are looking for a reason to snuggle close together on the sofa, watch one of these romantic comedies.
Great Ways to Say "I Love You"
The best ways to say "I love you" are usually in simple, everyday, seemingly unimportant ways. Here are some suggestions to get your own creative juices flowing.
Parents are Lovers too
Finding ways to be romantic inspite of the kids.
Romance in the Mud
Gardening survival strategies for couples
Don't forget your anniversaries! Here are some great anniversary gift suggestions. Celebrate your love for one another!
1 - 100th Wedding Anniversary Gift Ideas
Wondering what to give your spouse on your anniversary? Here is a listing of both traditional and modern anniversary gift ideas for years 1 through 100. History of Wedding Anniversary Gift Lists. We are often asked about the history of the wedding anniversary gift lists. Although the anniversary gift lists on this website are based on the lists provided by the Chicago Public Library, the tradition of giving specific anniversary gifts based on the number of years a couple has been married dates back to the Middle Ages.
How to Have Anniversary Greetings Sent From the White House
If you know a couple who is celebrating 50 years or more of marriage, or who was just been married, you can have an anniversary greeting or wedding congratulations sent to them from the White House.