5 Powerful Lessons for a Better Marriage
Marriage is challenging but yet transformative. My wife and I are coming on our seventh anniversary this October. Over those years, we’ve made a lot of memories, some good, some bad, but through those seven years, we’ve grown deeper in love. Marriage isn’t for everybody, and Apostle Paul mentioned this in 1 Corinthians 7:7.
Nevertheless, for those of us married, there are five lessons I have learned that will make your marriage better and more fulfilling.
Lesson 1: Show Your Spouse Grace
Showing grace means being committed to loving your spouse exactly where they are. Grace looks past the things that frustrate you and always believes the best about your spouse. Grace is about showing forgiveness when they hurt you. In any marriage, there will be tough times. However, showing your spouse grace helps fight through the messiness of any troubling moment or behavior.
What has helped my marriage during some of our most challenging times is showing each other grace. We’re both imperfect, and realizing your spouse is the son or daughter of our Heavenly Father, and made in His image, and is of inestimable value makes showing grace easier to do.
Showing grace is putting your ego to the side and loving your spouse no matter what.
Lesson 2: When Marriage Hurts God is Refining You
All marriages will go through a season of difficulty. Some moments will be more difficult than others. My wife and I went through a very tough moment in our marriage a few years ago. This resulted in a brief separation. However, this space helped both of us overcome the hurt, and we eventually reconciled our marriage.
This cold season of our marriage helped refine us, not only individually but together as a couple. This time lamented, was the shiny ring on my finger, the one placed by my wife on the day I said “I do” is a symbol of eternal love and commitment. My wedding ring is a constant reminder of my commitment to her.
However, once a shiny ring gets scuffed, scratched, and adjusted over the years, it will eventually get rebuffed and shined up again. This is what marriage symbolizes. Marriage will change you. It will refine you. When a marriage goes through seasons of hurt, God is working to remove sin from your life. When marriage hurts, God is trying to polish you into something precious.
Lesson 3: Marriage is Not Meant to Make You Happy
Here’s a lesson that was hard for me to grasp early on in our marriage. Marriage is not about your happiness; it’s not even about you. Marriage is about love, which is something we have to choose to give every day. Marriage is about sacrifice, commitment, and serving your spouse.
Marriage is not about finding one’s happiness. However, if you’re getting married to find your joy or “be happy,” you’re getting married for all the wrong reasons.
Marriage is about choosing “commitment” over “personal happiness.” What marriage taught me was how to be selfless, something I’m learning how to do every day towards my wife. Marriage is about being a servant leader, just like Jesus, and placing your spouse’s needs ahead of your own.
Lesson 4: Love is a choice
Getting married is a beautiful and magical moment. I pray everyone gets to experience this moment someday. My wife and I got married on the sandy beach of Ormond, Florida. I remember this moment very vividly. My bride was walking down the stairs while being ushered by my would-be father-in-law across the hot sand.
I remember balling my eyes out as she neared. The moment was a mixture of jubilation and joy. It could be described as an experience akin to a dopamine-laced, movie-esque kind of moment. However, the honeymoon period doesn’t last forever.
What many newlywed couples eventually realize is love is a choice and more than a feeling. The unconditional love between a husband and wife is choosing to love one another during the highs and lows every day. When you accept that love is more than a feeling, it’s freeing.
Love is being intentional. As the Apostle Paul states in 1 Corinthians 13:4-8: love is about being patient, kind, trusting, hopeful, and always persevering and protecting. These characteristics are all choices we have to make daily in our marriages.
Lesson 5: Have Fun Together
The last lesson I’ve learned through the years of marriage is just have fun together. Life can be hectic and stressful at times. Marriage will go through various seasons, and learning to have fun together helps keep your marriage healthy, and it will draw you closer. Just like love, fun is a choice. So stop looking for fun, and create it!
My wife and I enjoy playing board games such as Trouble, Monopoly Deal, Harry Potter Clue, and Uno. Our most favorite game to play together is Monopoly Deal. It’s a card version of the classic version. I’m not afraid to admit this, but she kicks my butt most of the time. Despite almost losing every time, I enjoy our fun time together. Seeing her laugh and trash talk me makes me smile from ear to ear.
We even enjoy being goofs. I will make funny impressions, and she just laughs at me. She will say, “you’re nuts,” and I always reply, “you married me,” with a smile.
Having fun just makes life so much fun, especially in the world we live in today.
Being married is exciting, and I thank the Lord every day for blessing our marriage. My wife and I went through low lows, but through the tough times, we came out stronger. I hope these five lessons help improve your marriage, so you can experience the marriage God wants you to have. God bless.
Christian, Husband, Political junkie, Braves fan, Marvel Nerd, craft beer aficionado, and a sinner saved by grace. He has a passion for helping Christian men grow in their faith. He is the founder and editor of Joshua’s Outpost.