In a recent article, several couples who have provide advice on how they have managed to have a lifelong marriage. It is not a lack of love that derails a marriage, it is a lack of commitment. A lifelong marriage requires a commitment to the original design of marriage.
According to the article, Two long-married couples give advice on creating lifelong love, both couples necessitate the need for commitment, communication, teamwork, and stewardship are the primary ingredients for a lifelong marriage. Ted and Betty Sue Forrester made major contributions to the article. Betty Sue believes that marriage needs to founded in Godly principles. According to Betty Sue, “I would say to a couple, let the Lord be number one in your marriage and love and respect each other totally.” Ted surmises, “No matter what you’re doing, live within your means. Have one checkbook. None of this, your money and my money stuff. Marriage is a team.”
Jerry and Lucile Adams made contributions to the article too. According to Jerry, marriage is a commitment. Lucile had a focus on the finances and relationship aspect of a marriage. Lucile believes that marriage is give and take. “You can’t always have your way. Sometimes you have to go with his ideas, and then he’ll go with mine.”
While both couples have provided great insight into sustaining a lifelong marriage, the real problem that many couples have faced is the how.
How can couples create and sustain a lifelong marriage?
Couples can create and sustain a lifelong marriage by replicating the original design of marriage. The first two phases of the original design of marriage focus on the man. According to Genesis 2:15, God called Adam to be a servant and steward over the Garden of Eden. This foundation is where most marriages fail. Husbands place an emphasis on working in the world rather than working for God.
I can’t number the countless times when I find the correlation between a troubled marriage and a husband who refuses to serve God.
Another troubling correlation in a troubled marriage is the husband’s lack of stewardship. Stewardship defines a man’s relationship to God. It identifies God as owner and man as manager.
Stewardship defines our practical obedience in the administration of everything under our control. It is the consecration of one’s self and possessions to God’s service. Stewardship acknowledges in practice that we do not have the right of control over ourselves or our property—God has that control. It means as stewards of God we are managers of that which belongs to God, and we are under His constant authority as we administer His affairs. Faithful stewardship means that we fully acknowledge we are not our own but belong to Christ, the Lord, who gave Himself for us.
The second challenge that can avert a lifelong marriage is when the perspective husband does not follow God’s directions. Praise and worship is one area that many men have challenges.
Men have responsibilities to God that many men will not follow.
For a man indeed ought not to cover his head, forasmuch as he is the image and glory of God: but the woman is the glory of the man (1 Corinthians 11:7).
In this passage the image of God is Jesus Christ. The glory of God in the Greek doxa. Doxa means to honor, praise, and worship which is a primary area that many men have challenges.
Honoring God has many benefits. For example, when we honor God with our money we can expect increase. When we give to the Lord, we demonstrate to him, to others, to our wives, and to ourselves that he is supreme in our lives. When we give, we attest that he is our most valued treasure. Giving shows that our hearts are set on him and not on our money or belongings. Giving honors God as supreme. Giving to him is an act of worship. Since finances is a primary reason for divorce, we can increase the likelihood of a lifelong marriage by tithing and giving.
The final necessity for a lifelong marriage is a wife that would help their husband in the spiritual mission that God has appointed him to serve. God put the husband and wife to work together as a team. Much of this necessity becomes diverted because the premium is placed in other areas. Marriages either become the focus of wife or the children. This is an error and can contribute to pitfalls that avert the benefits of a lifelong marriage.
Dr. Derrick and Mrs. Sheila Campbell
PO Box 4707
Cherry Hill, NJ 08012
Published books – Leading Your Marriage into the Promised Land
-Leading Your Marriage into the Promised Land (Workbook for husbands & Wives)
– Advanced Marriage Training for Singles
– Husband Leadership Principles
“I was blessed by the love and sensitivity that you and your wife showed during the presentation”.
Bishop Joseph P. Ravenell
Samaritan Baptist Church
“I would highly recommend you to any church or organization desiring to provide their people with timely marital wisdom and practical application skills”.
Dr. James E. Woods, II
El Shaddia Christian Assembly