In honor of our anniversary September 28th, I thought I’d share 13 ways to strengthen a marriage. These are practical ways a committed couple can grow together.
For more than 13 years we have grown together. It has been hard, it has been joyous, it has been sorrowful, it has been wonderful, it has been terrible, but most of all it has been life-changing for the better!
13 Ways To Strengthen A Marriage
Love each other – Yeah, I know that seems obvious, but what does loving each other really look like? Well, love is an action, not a feeling. Love is putting your spouse first. Love is caring about their feelings. Love is going out of your way to pray for them every single day, multiple times. Love is caring more about their soul then your wants.
Date each other – Again, this seems obvious, but so often quality time together is pushed to the back burner. Make time together a top priority! I’d go so far as to say, “date” each other every day! Even if you only have 15-minutes to spare, take the effort to spend some time chatting without distraction (honestly, while one of you is taking a shower is a perfect time. I mean that in the most innocent of ways.). Give the kids a bedtime and stick to it, then make the evening a time for you and your spouse to connect. Whether you are watching a show, talking, playing a game, eating, working out, or whatever! Find what you both enjoy doing and do it together as often as you reasonably can. Obviously, choosing activities that can easily be done at home is ideal and most frugal!
Get a break together – If you have kids, then plan a day away from them every month or so. Getting away without children and spending a few hours reconnecting is extremely beneficial to keeping you both in-tune to each other’s needs. Try not to use it as a time to “hash it out”, but if there is something that needs to be discussed, that is a perfect time! Even just going grocery shopping together and then out to dinner is a great way to spend time together without kids.
Parent together – Often one parent (usually mom) ends up doing most of the parenting and the other spouse gets left out. The uninvolved parent can feel like they are not sure how to become more involved without stepping on the other parent’s toes and so they just stay out of it altogether. However, it does no one any good if one parent doesn’t have the authority that they should in the family. Both parents should share responsibility for raising their children. It is biblical and it is practical. It also helps to build a strong family unit and marriage!
Laugh together – Life and marriage are hard work! Smile at and laugh with your spouse every day. A great way to bring laughter into the home is by observing your children together and sharing knowing looks about how cute, silly, and precious they are! Another important reason both parents should be actively involved with the children on a daily basis.
Cook together – Put the kids to bed and cook together. It can be such a revealing experience to share a kitchen with someone. The same is true for your marriage. You can get to know your spouse even more by cooking with them. It is a learning experience for you both. Choose to enjoy it and laugh through the mishaps and opinions on which way is the best way to cook something!
Study the Bible together – One of the most important things you can do for your marriage is studying the Bible together and one of the most important things a wife can do for her marriage is give her husband her full attention and respect during Bible study!
Pray together – Even if all you do is say the Lord’s Prayer, do it! Praying a personal prayer for each other and opening your heart to God alongside your spouse is even better!
Play together – Board games, sports, games with the kids, flirting with each other, etc. Play of all types is good for your marriage. It is also a great way to relieve the stresses that come with being a parent, spouse, and adult!
Work together – yard work, house cleaning, garage cleaning, fixing something, painting a room, working online… whatever it is, sharing a common goal brings people together.
Plan together – Just like working together brings people together, so does planning and creating goals together. If it does not come naturally to you both to discuss and talk about your future plans and goals, then make the time to do so. Plan a date for discussion, bring paper and pencil, ask questions, give answers, and share your thoughts. Outline how you both can contribute towards that goal. Be open, honest, and respectful of each other.
Dream together – Sometimes your plans and goals can be no more than dreams. Sometimes (usually) you have no control over the life you are living together (financially, etc.). While you are planning and making small goals to work towards, be sure to dream together as well. Having dreams together is important and can guard your heart against lusting after something different than what you have. A shared dream is an innocent dream.
Live together – Most married couples live together, but do they live life together? Don’t be roommates where you each have your own jobs and hobbies and then sleep under the same roof at night. Build a life with your spouse. Spend more time with them than with anyone else (which is hard to do if one of you works outside the home, but even more reason to spend every possible moment together). Grow your family together in the Lord.