I sat down to write some thoughts for a young friend getting married. I wanted these words to be encouraging but also realistic. I didn’t want to pen the typical “best wishes on your wedding day.” Wishes might be sweet for a church day full of flowers and white tulle but it takes a whole lot more for a marriage to go the distance.
So I wrote honest thoughts as they came to me:
Being married is incredibly difficult. Being married is amazing. Being married can seem impossibly hard. Being married can seem incredibly beautiful. There is no other person that can make me feel as frustrated as my husband can. There is no other person that can make me feel as loved as my husband can.
As these words tumbled out I wondered if my friend would think I was a bit crazy. One minute I painted marriage as blissful as a kite catching wind and rising to the sky. And the next minute as if the string had gotten caught in a thorny bush and sent the kite crashing to the ground with thuds of disappointment.
So which is it? Bliss or disappointment?
It’s a fragile blend of both.
In the end I crumpled up my original note and simply wrote this, “Determine to pray more words over your marriage than you speak about your marriage.” I tucked the note into the white envelope as I tucked that statement into my own heart.
I wrote that note not because it had been true for my relationship but because I suddenly realized I wanted it to be true.
The teacher being taught by her own written out lesson.
And you know what I’ve discovered in the weeks since? I haven’t been praying nearly enough for my marriage.
I think about things. I discuss things. I complain about things. I attempt to fix things. I work on things. I apologize for things. I want to change things. And then I discuss things some more.
But talking about things and thinking about things and working on things… these are not at all the same as praying for them.
In Luke 6:39 Jesus asks a very important but simple question, “Can a blind man lead a blind man? Will they not both fall into a pit?” My husband and I need Jesus leading us, guiding us, teaching us, redirecting us, and showing us how to have a marriage that honors Him and each other.
I want my husband and I to spend a lot less time in the pit this year.
And I think praying more words over my marriage will certainly be key to this. What about you? Below are some lovely Scriptures I’m weaving into my prayers right now.
But, before we end this post, will you commit to doing something with me? Let’s assign ourselves the next step we want to take with getting more intentional in praying for our marriages. If I were you right now, I’d be so tempted to think this would be a good idea but then not take the next step. But thinking about doing this won’t change a thing.
Actually getting intentional about praying for something in my marriage today is the first step toward that marriage I’ve been dreaming of – the one that seemed so possible for Art and me twenty years ago in that church full of flowers and tulle.
Making sure I’m headed in that direction as a wife is only a few intentional prayers away.
“He reached down from on high and took hold of me; he drew me out of deep waters… You are my lamp, O Lord; the Lord turns my darkness into light,” 2 Samuel 22:17 and 29.
“Let your conversation be always full of grace, seasoned with salt, so that you may know how to answer everyone,” Colossians 4:6.
“What shall we say in response to this? If God is for us, who can be against us?” Romans 8:31.
“For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the powers of this dark world and against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly realms,” Ephesians 6:12.
“Let us hold unswervingly to the hope we profess, for he who promised is faithful,” Hebrews 10:23.
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