Updated: Dec 20, 2022
Are you and your spouse feeling distant? When was the last time the two of you talked about something other than the kids, your schedule, or the bills? Has Date Night become a thing of the past?
The busyness of life, with its never-ending demands, makes it easy to forget God ordained that our spouses be our first and most important ministry, taking precedence over everything else in our lives.
In Matthew 19: 5 – 6 Jesus was having a conversation with some of the religious leaders when He said, “This explains why a man leaves his father and mother and is joined to his wife, and the two are united into one. Since they are no longer two but one, let no one split apart what God has joined together.”
Prioritizing your relationship is key to having a fulfilling marriage that endures throughout the years no matter what may come. Roosevelt and I learned a few things in 32 years and here are our top 6 ways to practically prioritize your marriage.
1. Put God First
It's easy to get anxious and confused if you are taking cues from society on how to have a successful marriage. The first and most important step to making your relationship a priority is committing to God. When God’s standards and kingdom principles are your foundation, He will guide you in how best to prioritize other aspects of your life.
The word of God teaches that God should be your first priority, your spouse second, children third, extended family and friends fourth, and career and ministry fifth.
The Bible says in Matthew 6:33 “But seek ye first the kingdom of God, and his righteousness; and all these things shall be added unto you.” As you seek God's way of doing things and follow His lead, you will receive the guidance and help you need pertaining to everything else in life including your relationships with your spouse, children, family, co-workers and serving the body of Christ. In addition, He will give you wisdom in making good and godly decisions about parenting, finances, health, career and any and all other decisions pertaining to abundant living.
Although it may seem difficult sometimes to juggle different commitments and responsibilities, God will help you if and when you put Him first.
2. Be Selective About Your Commitments
You don’t have to say yes to everything!
Making your marriage a priority does not mean neglecting other commitments and responsibilities. It’s all about learning how to balance your family life, work, and social life so that all needs are met.
For instance, if communication between you and your spouse is lacking, it might be beneficial to take a break from social media, television and entertainment so that you can focus on quality conversations with one other. It’s important to be intentional about setting time aside for your spouse. Make sure to be present in the moment by turning off electronics, and other distractions, and dedicating your full attention when engaging with your partner.
It may be necessary to say “no” to extra work commitments or to an invitation from friends so that you can spend quality time with your spouse. Being selective about the commitments and activities you invest your time in will help ensure that your marriage gets proper attention while managing other priorities in life. Learn how to balance commitments so that your marriage remains your top priority.
3. Schedule Intimate Times to Connect Emotionally, Spiritually, Physically & Sexually
Dedicate time out of each day or week just for connecting with one another. This could mean a weekly date night or daily walks together.
It’s important to talk openly and share whatever is on your hearts to stay connected emotionally and spiritually, which strengthens your covenant connection. When you and your spouse feel safe sharing the most intimate parts of your being, it strengthens your bond of oneness.
Physical touch is important too! Make sure that you are expressing love through physical affection like hugs, holding hands, cuddling, and kissing.
And of course, be intentional about staying connected sexually! Communicate often about your needs, desires, and expectations. Talk openly about what’s working for both of you, any areas that need attention and work together on creating solutions.
Creating the space for intimate conversations and moments will help you better understand one another. Having quality time alone strengthens your bond and helps you stay connected even when life gets busy with work or other obligations outside of your relationship.
Enduring Love Ministries has created the perfect opportunity for you and your spouse to connect on every level with The Oneness Experience Weekend. Plan to spend Valentine's Day Weekend with us in the beautiful Blue Ridge Mountains, and you'll leave with a renewed sense of strength, intimacy and reconnection in your marriage.
4. Set Boundaries That Protect from Negative Outside Influences
Boundaries provide protection from outside influences as well as set limits on how far we should go. Setting boundaries with family members or friends who may bring negative energy into your relationship is important for keeping healthy communication within your marriage intact. This could be anything from setting limits around who visits, not allowing certain people into your private conversations, or making an agreement to use constructive language when you are talking about each other’s opinions/ideas.
As a couple, you should set boundaries together, articulate them well, and hold one another accountable for maintaining them. Remember, if you have no boundaries, people will cross the line all day long. Others won’t know how far they can or can’t go unless you tell them.
5. Pray Together Often
Prayer is the catalyst for couples coming to a place of agreement. Praying together daily will empower your marriage with the fortitude to endure anything that comes your way.
Matthew 18:19-20 states that “Again I say to you, if two of you agree on earth about anything they ask, it will be done for them by the Father in heaven. For where two or three are gathered in my name, there I am in the midst of them.”
Connecting spiritually strengthens and encourages you both and gives you an opportunity to communicate with each other about any struggles that you may be facing. Spending time together in the presence of God allows you to tap into supernatural strength, wisdom, love and power and apply that to your lives.
6. Always Have One Another's Back
Support one another through thick and thin. Make sure that you are always there to support, defend and protect your spouse in any situation.
Ephesians 5:28-33 says that husbands should love their wives as Christ loves the Church and gave himself for it. We know that Jesus promised to never leave us or forsake us. He very clearly states that all we have to do is ask for help, and He will be there.
That is the way that your marriage should be. Your spouse should have the assurance that no matter what happens they can depend on God and you to be there through thick and thin, for better or for worse, in sickness and in health, until death parts you. When they ask for your support, your only answer should be, “yes”.
As a team in agreement, the enemy has no power to penetrate or break your union. So, take time to identify areas where you need additional support from one another and build each other up with scripture, words of affirmation, compassion, understanding, and acts of service. This builds trust and enables your spouse to operate in the knowledge that he/she is never alone.
These 6 tips are very practical and we advise intentionally implementing them one at a time. By making them a part of your daily or weekly routines, couples ensure that they are building and maintaining a strong marriage foundation. It simply requires two committed hearts coming together in agreement to make their covenant marriage a top priority the way God originally intended.