Are you happily married? Chances are if you took more than 3 seconds to answer this question you are either unsure of your happiness or certain that your marriage is unhappy. We live in a fast-paced world plagued with constant changes and challenges. At any given time, the state of your marriage may be affected by environmental, social, or economic factors that are not within you or your spouse’s control.
Marriages generally fall into one of three categories: Happy and mutually fulfilling, Complacent and Stagnant, or Troubled. While the uncontrollable factors listed above may have some effect on the current state of a marriage, there are some elements of our marriage that we can control. These elements are related to the overall foundation of our marriage. Similar to the construction of a house, when built on a solid foundation, the house typically can withstand unforeseen weather and environmental elements it might face. However, when a house is built on a weak foundation, it oftentimes crumbles when met with the slightest adversity.
Here are the five pillars that makeup a strong marriage.
Priority: How do you prioritize your spouse? God intends for us to prioritize our spouses second only to him. Priorities can be proven by investing time, money, and energy. Making yourself completely available to your spouse for a certain number of minutes a day, scheduling regular dates, and showing interest in your spouse’s interest will show that you highly prioritize them.
Pursuit: Are you engaged within your marriage outside of functional responsibilities that you should perform (i.e. raising children, paying bills, maintaining the home). Pursuing your spouse with high energy and diligence is key in having a strong marriage. Having a regular date night or day, spending quality time with your spouse increases the amount of pursuit within a marriage.
Agreement: When you are married, you are considered “one” with your spouse. In order to function as one, you must be in agreement about the functionality of your relationship.
a. Communications – Regular conversation
b. Understanding the Partnership – Working together as a team when making decisions and setting team goals, not focusing specifically on individual wants and needs.
Possessions: Marriage is a covenant where two lives become one before God. Everything that was owned individually prior to being married is now jointly owned. This includes: body, finances, children, property, wealth, and decision making.
Transparency: When you are married there should be nothing secret between husband and wife. Expose your thoughts and emotions to your spouse honestly. Wondering how strong the foundation of your marriage is?