I told my wife Joyce the other day, "You know, the great miracle is not love at first sight. It is love after a long long look." Let me tell you some ways my wife Joyce and I have tried to keep the honey in our honeymoon.
Build up each other in the faith. Ecclesiastes 4:12
says "a threefold cord is not quickly broken." A three-fold cord is a man, a woman, and God. Joyce knows that she is not first in my life because God is first in my life. She doesn't mind being second. Why? Because she knows I can love her more by putting her second than I ever could love her by putting her first.
God made us different that He might make us one (see 1 Peter 3:1,7
). He made the husband with a hard exterior and the wife more gentle, but not inferior. The husband is the head of the home, as Jesus is the head of the church and gave Himself for the church (see Ephesians 5:23-25
). Most women don't mind submitting to a man who loves her enough to die for her, and shows her by the way that he lives for her.
A wise man once said, "To whom little is not enough, nothing is enough." If you're not careful, your marriage is going to be until debt do us part. Learn to be content (see Philippians 4:11-13
). Do you know how much I paid for Joyce's engagement ring? One hundred dollars. I didn't have the cash or a credit card. Instead, I went in week after week to pay for that ring.
There are no problems too big to solve, just people too small to solve them. If we would just banish bitterness and attack the problem rather than one another, our families would be a lot better off. Don't go to bed angry with your backs to each other. Ephesians 4:26 says, "Be ye angry, and sin not: let not the sun go down upon your wrath." Joyce and I have tried to practice that. Sometimes we've stayed up for three nights in a row, but we worked through our bitterness!
Communication is so important because it is truly what builds intimacy in a marriage. 1 Peter 3:8-10
has much to say about the communication a couple needs to have in order to enjoy a lasting love. One way we can build communication is to have a good date life and there are four kinds of dates that everybody needs to make. First, each spouse needs to have a daily date with God. Second, if the couple has children, each needs to have a regular date with their kids. Third, couples need to have a date by themselves. Fourth, have a date with each other.
Joyce and I really try to keep our "courtship" going. Many times on my way home, I will call Joyce and say, "The Love Mobile is on its way home. I can hardly wait to get there, so sensitive your lips." To the husband, I would add — never cease flirting with your wife and never flirt with any other woman. Don't call the waitress or your coworker "sweetheart" — you've got only one sweetheart. Second, God's Word tells husbands to give honor to their wives, that means to respect and be courteous to her at all times. Open the door for her — and not just when other people are looking.
Practice Prayer1 Peter 3:7
tells the husband to "dwell with them according to knowledge, giving honor unto the wife, as unto the weaker vessel, and as being heirs together of the grace of life; that your prayers be not hindered." To the men who may be reading this, let me say that most men don’t want to pray with women because we have a hard outer shell. But husband, I implore you to humble yourself and get down on your knees with your wife and practice prayer. Let her know you are praying for her, let her hear you pouring out your heart before God. It will give her great confidence and comfort.
I hope if you are married or are contemplating getting married, that you will pray about doing these things to create a love that will last.
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