It never fails.
Whenever and wherever I get the privilege to speak…I am always asked the same question afterwards. “Cheryl, in your intro, you mentioned that you’ve been married for 23 years to your husband. How has your marriage lasted so long? What is your secret?”
Many times, after a few moments of dialogue, it becomes clear that there are some difficulties or challenges in that person’s marriage.
The frequency of those encounters are, unfortunately, more than I ever want to experience. When I reflect on it…it just feels like there is an all out attack on the institution of marriage. It didn’t come as a surprise to me to hear that separation & divorce rates were on the rise in Canada, I could see it in my own circles. What I wasn’t prepared for, was to hear that over 40% of married couples will be divorced before their 30th anniversary. Over 40 percent. That would be almost half of the couples in any single gathering that you or I have been at.
The truth is that, in the turbulent times of our marriage, it would seem easier to succumb to what the world tells us to do. Get a divorce. That seems like the only option these days.
So how do you and your spouse NOT become another divorce statistic?
Know that YOU don’t save your marriage…God does. You and your spouse need to place your marriage into God’s hands and have Him direct your steps back to each other. In doing so, God will speak clearly to you both – individually and also through Godly counsel.
Know that marriage is about SURRENDER.
Surrendering your pride, surrendering your need to be right, surrendering your ‘list’ of the other’s wrongs. More importantly, marriage is not about what you get…but what you can give to one another.
Jesus showed us by example that he came not to be served, but to serve…even unto the point of death. This is why He said in Ephesians 5:35: Husbands, love your wives so much that you would give your life up for her, just as Christ gave his life for the church.”
Marriage, surrendered to God, is a beautiful journey that changes each other for the better. My prayer for you is that, in tough times, you won’t give in but you would see your marriage as something worth fighting for. That is exactly how our Heavenly Father sees it.
If you’re reading this in a time of crisis in your marriage, pray this prayer with me:
Lord, I come before you today with a heavy heart; my marriage is in grave trouble, and I need Your help and closeness. Please make changes in our hearts. Bring us closer together as we were before. Fill us with Your love and give us the strength to love one another, care for one another, and fulfill your Divine plan for us. Make us one again. Please bring healing to our broken hearts, bring restoration to our relationship, ignite lost passion, and inspire forgotten intimacy. Please transform the two of us from the inside out, and lead us in Your way. Heal our marriage, God. In Jesus name. Amen.
We are praying for the full restoration of your marriage and are believing God with You!