The honeymoon is over, you’ve settled in to your new life as a married person and now you are realizing that this person is driving you crazy, you had less in common than you thought, your parenting styles differ and your spouse has annoying habits. How do you decide to make it work or to let it go?

Statistics show that 40-50% of marriages fail.  Most reasons are selfish.  However there are legitimate reasons for divorce. I’ve seen loved ones and friends divorce when they’ve done everything possible and their world has crumbled beneath their feet.  I’ve also seen friends remain married and pick up the pieces when their world has fallen apart.  Bottom line, it takes two people trying at the same time to make a marriage work.

I visited with my brother and his wife and kids last weekend and someone gave a great sermon on marriage and family relationships and how to make them work, so I thought I would share:

Desire is the first requirement to make a marriage work.  If one person is willing to give 100% and the other isn’t completely dedicated, it won’t work.

Study the good word, or in other words, read scripture together daily, not just when you are having problems.  We all need the help of God and Jesus Christ in our lives, including our marriage. The family is ordained of God.

Have prayer together as a couple and as a family.  I myself have found our family has been strengthened when we pray for one another in front of each other.  It lets the other family members know we love and care for them.

Say those 3 important words that matter to each of us.  I love you.  Then, back your actions up with your words.

Eliminate sarcasm from your conversations with one another.  Say what you mean, and mean what you say.  Don’t belittle or make fun of each other.

Work things out and talk things through.  There is nothing worse than ignoring someone or walking away and not allowing them to express how they feel.  It is a form of abuse.

Don’t go to bed angry.  My husband and I have been pretty good about this.  I can only count on one hand in 20 years of marriage where we haven’t worked things out until the morning.  Those were a long sleepless nights of anger, bitterness and restlessness for me, knowing he was either on the couch (or me) or I was trying to hug my side of the bed, as not to touch him.

Hold hands when you are trying to work problems out. If your spouse is the touching type, refusing to touch them is abusive and very painful for them.

Date frequently.  This can be a challenge if your children are young but find another couple and swap kids with them.  Or sacrifice dining out once a month so you can afford a sitter.

Sit next to each other and let the kids sit around you.  I’ve seen couples put kids between them-on purpose.  It’s their buffer zone.  Don’t let your kids come between you and your spouse. (not just when you are seated)

Make self sacrifices if you know your spouse will appreciate it.  My husband didn’t like to use any PDA (public display of affection) when we first got married.  I felt hurt and really just wanted him to hold my hand!  One Christmas, we wrote gifts of service to each other and put them in each other’s stocking.  One he gave to me said, “This is good for 10 PDA.” It’s funny now, but at the time, it meant the world to me!

wedding photoIf you want to be as happy, or more than you were on your wedding day, it is going to take work and communication and sacrifice.  But it will be worth it.


Chelle 🙂



  1. Amen!

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