1. A Firm Foundation
- Preparing for a successful marriage can be likened to constructing a building.
- Constructing a building requires careful preparation, so also is preparing for a successful marriage.
- A marriage must have a strong foundation if it is to last and be satisfying.
- Just like a solid structure needs a firm foundation, a strong family also needs a firm foundation.
- Have a realistic view of both the blessings and the cost of being married.
2. The Right Priorities
- In a successful marriage, each spouse puts the other’s needs ahead of self, possessions, jobs, friends and other relatives.
- Husband and wife spend plenty of time with each other and the children. This may sound difficult for bankers but doable.
- Both are willing to make sacrifices for the interest of the family.
- Successful couples view their marriage as a permanent union.
- When problems arise, they strive to solve it rather than using it as an excuse to abandon the marriage.
- A sense of commitment makes the couple to feel secure and trust that the other will continue to honor the union.
- It is motivated by sincere, heartfelt love and is a reflection of respect and honor for each other and for God. So never undermine your sacred marital relationship by flirting; have eyes only for your mate.
- Two are better than one, if one of them should fall, the other one can raise his partner up.
- Both husband and wife should view their marriage in terms of ‘ours’ and ‘we’ rather than ‘mine’ and ‘me’.
- When there is teamwork, husband and wife are no longer single at heart but married to be an entity.
- When disagreements occur, you work out practical solutions instead of wasting time and emotional energy blaming and accusing.
- Both troubled and successful families have disagreements but successful families discuss matters without resorting to insults and other forms of abusive speech.
- Ask yourself – when I speak to my spouse or children, do I resort to using insulting words such as “stupid,” “idiot,” or something similar?
- Family members treat one another as they themselves would like to be treated.
- Successful couples learn from the past but they do not keep track of old grievances and then use these to make sweeping assertions (like, you are always…, you never listen…).
- Keep past grievances out of any present disagreements you may have with your spouse.
- Settle any misunderstanding you have before going to bed. Do not carry it over till the next day.
- When couples disagree, each one needs to be swift about hearing, slow about speaking and slow about wrath. After listening carefully, they might see the need to apologize. Saying with sincerity, “sorry for hurting you” takes humility and courage.
Important Points to Note
For a Successful Marriage
- Make time for your marriage and your mate.
- Promote warmth, love, and affection.
- Be trustworthy and committed.
- Be kind and respectful.
- Share the workload at home.
- Contribute to mutually satisfying conversations.
- Share humor and relaxation.
- Keep working at strengthening your marriage.
When You Need to Discuss a Problem
- Schedule a time when neither of you is tired.
- Avoid criticizing; be positive toward each other.
- Avoid interrupting; take turns listening and talking.
- Acknowledge your spouse’s feelings.
- Express empathy for each other, even when you disagree.
- Be reasonable and flexible.
- Humbly apologize when you are mistaken.
- Express appreciation and affection.
- Turning off the TV allows more time for communication.