Thirty-nine years ago they stood at the altar in the Springfield church and vowed to stay together for life. That has not been an easy task. It isn’t for any married couple. Both being Christians gives an extra dimension to the relationship, but divorce rates for those in the church are almost identical for those who are not. Here are a few of the secrets to keeping the relationship going.
You must select the correct person. Choose someone that you have as much in common with as possible. If there is nothing you enjoy doing together, that is a clue you won’t want to spend much time with each other. Camping, yard sales, crafts, home improvements, music, and movies are just some examples of interests shared by Cindy and your Examiner. Don’t marry the person you can live with. Select the one you cannot live without.
Communication is another key. “Men are from Mars and Women are from Venus” author John Gray has the right idea when he likens men and women to people from two different cultures and languages. Along with speaking the same language you must be careful not to offend the other through ignorance. Easier said than done. When she stands in the room as he is working on a project and gives her opinion of how it should be done, she is not trying to be boss. She simply wants to be with him and help.
Another part of communicating is to use the proper love language with your spouse. “The Five Love Languages” by Gary Chapman will help with determining what your love language is and how to express your love to your mate through her (or his) own language. When the love language is closeness, she or he will want to be there even though there is nothing that is needed at that time.
When the vows are said, they include “For richer or for poorer, In Sickness and in Health”. Sticking together through these are difficult, but not as hard as “For Better or For worse”. What is worse than poorer and sickness? Some days the worse is the attitude that your spouse has to tolerate in you. This attitude may be selfish, haughty, condescending or something worse.
Make it easier on your spouse to live with you by being the person that she or he first admired. There is no such thing as falling in love. Love is a verb not a noun. You do not fall in love. You may fall in lust as a college friend used to say, but when you love it is intentional. If you no longer love someone it is not their fault. You are the one that stopped loving them. Find the reason you no longer want to love and change it. Marriage can be forever, but it has to be your choice to keep it strong that long.