Posts Tagged ‘marriage counseling’

25th Anniversary

August 16, 2011

Our 25th anniversary is this month. Having come this far, I believe that I can comment on some of the keys to maintaining a healthy marriage.

Keep Christ in your marriage.  I cannot over-emphasize the importance of maintaining a relationship with Christ.  In our twenty-five years of marriage, I can only remember one Sunday when neither of us were in church.; and only a couple of Sundays that one of us missed due to illness.   I firmly believe that God provides extra wisdom, grace and strength as needed to face the challenges that come our way.

Commitment: There is no substitute for an unflinching resolve to make the marriage work.  This is one time that being stubborn is beneficial.  Divorce is not an option.  Marriage is “till death do we part”  and no fair killing each other!  Commitment also means ‘forsaking all others”.  Our commitment to our spouse is exclusive physically and emotionally.

Communication:  Keep talking to each other.  Talk about the facts of what is happening. Talk about what you hope, or fear, will happen.  Talk about what you feel.  Do not shut down communication, even if that communication is momentarily painful.  Talk it through.

Cash:  Early in our marriage we discussed the difference between  “need” and “want”.  It is important that you learn to live within your means.  Overextending on credit causes all kinds of stress on a marriage.  Learn to be content with what you have, even as you work towards what you want.

These four areas are not all there is to a successful marriage, but they are a good start.  I think that twenty-five years is a good start.  I am looking forward to the next twenty-five. I  think I am starting to get the hang of it.



Happily Ever After

January 19, 2010

“Happily Ever After” is the conclusion to a fairy tale or a romantic comedy.  People encounter serious problems if they feel that life is supposed to be like what they read in a book, or watch on television.

Real life has its share of up and downs.  There is a reason that traditional marriage vows included the phrasing “For better, for worse; for richer for poorer; in sickness and in health; for as long as we both shall live. (In premarital counseling, I like to add “and no fair killing each other”!)

It is not just in marriage, life itself has a cyclical nature.  Our lives run the gamut of experiences: of success and failure, of excitement and mundane, of blessings and trials, and so on.

Perhaps we watch too much television, or read too much fiction.  Real life is a wonderful thing, but it is not a fairy tale.