â€œHusbands love your wives as Christ loves the churchâ€ is the most humbling word that God will ever speak to you.
Spiritual leadership is easy to talk about and almost impossible to find. In the end,it amounts to being like Jesus.
Donâ€™t bring into marriage the same idea of marriage you had when you were single. Learn about marriage from those who have lived it and the One who designed it.
At all cost, avoid credit cards. The seduction of living above your means is incredibly easy, and must be fought with an all or nothing attitude.
Find a church community where you are encouraged to follow Jesus and become a vital and active part. God has hundreds of blessings for you among his people that you will never experience if you choose to avoid the church.
Read together. Especially read out loud to one another.
Read about marriage, and do so with a humble attitude. You know very little and most of what you know is wrong.
Marriage is like a third person; like a child that has brought you together. It has its own power, but you have to nurture, care for and protect it, or it will grow weak, sick or even die.
Be careful with friendships that challenge your ability to trust and be open with one another. No one is closer to you than your husband/wife. Friendships are different than marriage, but they can never be more intimate.
Ditto for on-line friendships. Be very conservative with online relationships of any kind.
Spend time with an older couple. Several decades older, if possible. Youâ€™ll see things that will make a very important difference right now.
Admit that being in love and learning how to love a real human being all the time are different things.
The atmosphere in a marriage is a matter of small things done consistently in love, not large things done to make up for failures.
Stay together, no matter what God asks you to deal with.
â€œI assumedâ€ is the culprit of far too many unnecessary arguments. Donâ€™t allow assumptions to direct your words and responses.
You donâ€™t need to have a major problem to benefit from talking to a counselor or pastor about your relationship or your personal journey.
Be careful about having so many single friends that you arenâ€™t seeing constant reminders of what it means to be married.
A person can feel neglected easily, and when they feel neglected, the only answer is to pay attention (and often, to say you are sorry, and mean it.)
Donâ€™t talk about your sexual relationship with anyone but your spouse or counselor/pastor.
Establish some routines that contribute to enjoying married life without a lot of spending. Netflix and dinner at home, for instance.
Pray and read scripture together. Use a resource that will make this easier, like the Book of Common Prayer lectionary.
Laugh at yourselves, but don’t ever belittle one another.
Words really do hurt, and much more so in marriage.
Remember what you promised to be and to do.
Learn to forgive your families for having a hard time believing you are adults. When you have children of your own, you will understand. It will take a long time to really let go.
Donâ€™t compare yourself to other married couples, especially in the area of finances. In our culture, so many people are living far above their means that prosperity is an illusion. Seek happiness, blessing and contentment, not prosperity.
Donâ€™t try to get wealthy overnight. Instead, save a little from every check. (Dave Ramsey. Dave Ramsey. Dave Ramsey.)
Don’t get in a hurry for a house, kids or anything that needs to come in God’s time.
If you have an addiction, deal with it. Donâ€™t hide it. Get help before the addiction progressively attacks your marriage by destroying your ability to love and be loved.
Married life is full of surprises and disappointments. You canâ€™t anticipate either, but you can be prepared for both.
Forgiveness in marriage is the greatest gift you can give. Be sure that you do not presume the gift will arrive automatically, no matter the offense.
Becoming family doesnâ€™t happen in a day, or a month or a year, or even many years. But itâ€™s always happened before you realize it.
Never letting the sun go down on your anger may not always be possible, but it is a goal that will repay all your efforts.
The joys of married life are amazingly simple. Make lots of room for them.
Scripture is right in everything it says about marriage; its descriptions, commands, advice and warnings. But it is never more true than when it tells you to DELIGHT in your spouse.