3 Ways to Keep Your Marriage Strong After the Wedding

Is Christ at the center of your marriage? (Lightstock)
Is Christ at the center of your marriage? (Lightstock)

After months of preparation the wedding finally arrives. You say “I Do” to your beautiful and wonderful wife and take off into the adventures of married life.

As I wrote that first paragraph above, I started to question the word “preparation.”

The word preparation typically means the coordination of wedding events, clothing, food and so on. It includes all of the stress to make sure everything goes as perfect as possible. It is your wedding day after all.

But what about preparation in terms of how to lead your wife after the big day? How are you going to handle communication issues? How will you figure out how to deal with old relationships of the opposite sex? How will you lead your wife spiritually? I struggled with these areas and want to share some of my story.

Do you remember your first job? Do you recall the excitement, but also the nervous feeling deep within your stomach? Do you remember not knowing how to do anything or not knowing anyone? This is kind of like the beginning of marriage. Schooling might have helped prepare you for that first job, but you still don’t know what to expect and you still have a lot to learn. It’s all part of the process right?

If that’s the case, why wouldn’t we understand marriage to be a process? It is a time of new beginnings, but also a time of adjusting to new surroundings and people (your wife). You’ve watched relationships over the years, most likely including your parents or a couple very close to you. You’ve seen relationships and how they interact on television and movies. How hard could it be?

Well, depending on your approach and leadership, it could be very hard or fairly easy.

For myself, it was hard—surprisingly hard. I use the word surprisingly because I honestly thought getting married and moving in with my girlfriend of seven years would be easy. It was what we had wanted for years.

We were trying to finish college and plan for our wedding. We attended a few sessions of marriage counseling, but I honestly thought I had it all figured out, so I really didn’t pay attention too hard. This goes back to that learning and growing in your new or first job, but I had no idea the same principles applied to marriage.

The wedding takes place and it’s wonderful. The honeymoon takes place and our relationship is roaring with intense love and desire. A year goes by and we started to experience some issues. Another year goes by and we started to drift further apart.

As we approached the third year, we fought often and were unhappy. We couldn’t communicate between ourselves, we couldn’t come to tell other people about our issues and God was far from our priorities. We had no idea what we were doing and our relationship was fading fast.

As most couples do these days during hard times, we considered divorce.

As we went through that hard time though, I really started to think about marriage and our potential divorce. I had loved this woman for years and now I want to be separated from her? We had done everything to keep our marriage strong, right? We were prepared to get married, right? Well, we found out we were wrong. Way wrong, and we started to make repairs.

Since we didn’t properly prepare for marriage before we got married, here are some changes we made and some ideas for you to consider. If you fall into the same category of not really knowing what marriage is or didn’t properly prepare either, I suggest you consider the following:

Click here for more.

SOURCE: Manturity
Bryan van Slyke

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