02 March 2012 ~ 3 Comments

How to Build a Divorce Proof Marriage

Divorce. What are the thoughts that come to your mind when you hear the word? Do you look back with bitterness and regret at a marriage of yours that ended in divorce? Maybe you think of your parents and how their divorce impacted you? Or perhaps you think of how grateful you are that they managed to stick together. Perhaps you feel a sense of determination to not let it happen to you.

When I think of divorce my mind immediately goes to my own parents. They went through several separations when I was young, but when the news came that they were divorcing I was devastated. How is a boy in his young teenage years supposed to handle such knowledge? Especially when both parents claimed to be Bible believing Christians? I knew that the Bible does not advocate divorce. In fact, God goes so far as to say that He hates it in Malachi 2:16.

And so my mother had to raise 6 kids by herself. My dad made sure he always paid his child support. He also spent time with us every week or two. But for the most part my mom had to do an awful lot by herself. The lack of a strong father figure deeply impact me and my siblings, even well into adulthood.

In fact, it’s only recently, at the age of 30, that I began the process of reconciliation with my dad. That’s a long time to hold a grudge.

So how do you actually build a divorce proof marriage in a society where about half of the marriages, both inside and outside the church, end in divorce?

The Key to Building A Divorce Proof Marriage

Do you want to know the secret to a long lasting marriage that defies the worldly culture we live in? OK, here it is:

Commit to making it last.

Yep, that’s the big secret. If you want to have a successful marriage that lasts a lifetime the most important thing you can do is make a formal commitment with your spouse that divorce is not an option. And don’t assume that your spouse agrees with you on this if you haven’t specifically discussed it. In fact, if you need to, go and do that now. I’ll wait until you come back.

Done? Great, let’s move on.

My wife and I actually made this commitment before we ever got married. In fact, we took it further. We agreed to not even use the “D word” unless it was in reference to a situation outside our marriage. Why? Because I’ve seen this word used as a weapon of psychological warfare in other marriages. It is a horrible way of trying to control the other person in a marriage.

Having an argument with your spouse? It’s just too easy to say something like: “Well if you feel that way then maybe we should get a divorce!”

A word of advice: Don’t do it. Ever.

Words have an incredible amount of power. They cause more destruction than a nuclear warhead. Using divorce as a threat against your spouse is not acceptable. If you’ve ever done this you need to repent and ask God and your spouse for forgiveness if you haven’t already done so. I’m serious.

Tips for Building a Thriving Marriage That Does More Than Survive

No one wants to be stuck in a hopeless, lifeless, joyless marriage for life. That certainly isn’t God’s design for you and your spouse. He wants to see you in a strong, Godly marriage that reflects His love for us. Successful marriages don’t just happen, they take a little effort and TLC. Here are some tips for cultivating a deeply satisfying marriage that truly thrives:

  • Develop A Habit of Spending Time to Pursue God Together. One of the best ways to build a strong marriage is to spend time seeking God as a couple. Worshiping, praying, and studying the Bible as a couple can go a long way to creating deeper levels of emotional intimacy in your relationship. Make it a habit to do these things often.
  • Embrace God’s Purpose For Your Marriage. God has a mission for you and your spouse to fulfill. It is the same mission that He has given the Church corporately and every single Christian individually. God’s design is for your marriage to be used to impact others with the gospel of Christ through evangelism and discipleship. You can never have a truly fulfilling marriage if you don’t embrace this principle.
  • Live A Lifestyle of Humility and Repentance. God loves the humble heart. Learn to live humbly by serving the needs of your spouse and others. And repentance is the key to healing, it frees us from spiritual bondage.

What are your experiences? Do you have any tips for building a marriage that is divorce proof? What about developing a marriage that thrives? I’d love to hear your story in the comments below.




3 Responses to “How to Build a Divorce Proof Marriage”

  1. Annettecha 23 May 2012 at 9:20 am Permalink

    Thank you for your Biblical advice on this topic.  I loved every word you had to say.  So, so, so true!!

  2. Bill Priebe 26 August 2012 at 4:38 am Permalink

    I am trying to design a seminar for people who want to make good marriages great. All I can find is information of how to help troubled marriages. Any suggestion for resources?

  3. Deborah 20 August 2014 at 8:34 am Permalink

    This is very good advice. My husband and I have been married for 20 years, and have committed to never using the “D-word”. We have had some really impossible times: joblessness, many moves, church changes, emotional abuse/control issues, poor decision making and me having to obediently follow that, his porn addiction, his infidelity, losing our house to the bank, and horrible finances. Marriage has been a lot more hellish than I ever thought possible. But we still love each other and keep trying. I cannot tell you how many many times I wanted to leave, and threatened to do so. But I also keep Jesus Christ in focus, praying healing and help on our marriage. I want to do what is right, but I have been in a deep depression which has rendered me almost useless, because of my dear hubby’s controlling nature. I am seeking online help for free because we cannot afford to pay for counseling. Please keep us in your prayers. We do not want to end up as another statistic, but I want to look forward to a better, brighter future rather than more of the same drudgery. Please, Jesus, heal our marriage! Lead us both to do your will. In Jesus’ name. Amen.

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