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Your Marriage Needs Community

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Illustration of a couple standing outside in their neighborhood at night holding hands and looking at each other
Jess Golden
Family and friends have an active role to play in marriages. What can you do to build a community that encourages healthy relationships for husbands and wives?

Do you remember when the preacher at a wedding used to say something like, “If there is anyone present who knows of any reason that this couple should not be joined in holy matrimony, speak now or forever hold your peace”? This was almost always followed by several seconds of awkward silence. “Speak now or forever hold your peace” meant that if you didn’t say something, you accepted the new marriage and must never express your objections.

But instead of telling wedding guests to hold their tongues, we should encourage them to pledge their support to help keep the new marriage strong. Family and friends have an active role to play in the marriage, and their involvement doesn’t end when the wedding cake is cut.

Your role in their marriage

I’ve learned that living in community is essential to keeping a marriage strong, particularly when the marriage is being tested. The God of the universe created us to be in relationship — with Him and with others — so we were never meant to tackle the challenges of life and marriage alone. This is why we need to be intentional about regularly connecting with like-minded couples.

This community will involve both give and take. Spouses who share a healthy, vibrant relationship rely on their support system, but they also recognize that they have a responsibility to help other couples thrive.

Be a support for couples

Hebrews 13:4 says, “Let marriage be held in honor among all.” We all have a responsibility to help build a community of support and encouragement for marriage.

You can support other people in their marriages by praying for the relationship, baby-sitting their kids so they can have a date night or starting a small group to study marriage topics. You could also read a marriage book together or attend a conference with other couples.

Whatever you choose to do, try to be transparent — create a culture where it’s OK to talk about relationship struggles. Lend an ear when other couples face frustrations or hard times, and encourage them to get counseling before they reach a crisis point.

Dr. Greg Smalley is vice president of Marriage and Family Formation at Focus on the Family and the co-author of A Crazy Little Thing Called Marriage.

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Your Teen Needs You Most of All

No parent of teens is perfect and even the best can learn how to better connect with their son or daughter. Get practical action steps to better connect with your teenager in 8 Essential Tips for Parenting Your Teen in this FREE video series!

There Is Still Hope for Your Marriage

You may feel that there is no hope for your marriage and the hurt is too deep to restore the relationship and love that you once had. The truth is, your life and marriage can be better and stronger than it was before. In fact, thousands of marriages, situations as complex and painful as yours, have been transformed with the help of professionals who understand where you are right now and care deeply about you and your spouse’s future. You can restore and rebuild your marriage through a personalized, faith-based, intimate program called, Hope Restored.

There Is Still Hope for Your Marriage

You may feel that there is no hope for your marriage and the hurt is too deep to restore the relationship and love that you once had. The truth is, your life and marriage can be better and stronger than it was before. In fact, thousands of marriages, situations as complex and painful as yours, have been transformed with the help of professionals who understand where you are right now and care deeply about you and your spouse’s future. You can restore and rebuild your marriage through a personalized, faith-based, intimate program called, Hope Restored.

There Is Still Hope for Your Marriage

You may feel that there is no hope for your marriage and the hurt is too deep to restore the relationship and love that you once had. The truth is, your life and marriage can be better and stronger than it was before. In fact, thousands of marriages, situations as complex and painful as yours, have been transformed with the help of professionals who understand where you are right now and care deeply about you and your spouse’s future. You can restore and rebuild your marriage through a personalized, faith-based, intimate program called, Hope Restored.
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Understand How to Respect and Love your Son Well

Why doesn’t my son listen to me? Have you ever asked that question? The truth is, how you see your son and talk to him has a significant effect on how he thinks and acts. That’s why we want to help you. In fact, we’ve created a free five-part video series called “Recognizing Your Son’s Need for Respect” that will help you understand how showing respect, rather than shaming and badgering, will serve to motivate and guide your son.

Reconnected: The Digital Experience

Is the love there, but not the spark? Reawaken fun in your marriage and move from roommates to soulmates again with the help of this 7-part online video experience. Learn how to connect emotionally and spiritually as husband and wife using techniques such as dreaming together and establishing deep, heartfelt communication. The Digital Experience includes 7 teaching videos, an online study guide and access to additional tools and resources to help spouses reconnect.

Next Steps: Marriage Assessment

We want your marriage to be thriving and healthy. Take the free Marriage Assessment from Focus on the Family to learn how to strengthen your bond with your spouse and get the tools to help you need to grow closer together. 

Next Steps: Fruit of the Spirit Devotionals for Couples

The Fruit of the Spirit Devotional is a free series of nine short videos to get you into God’s Word and inspire you to seek the Holy Spirit’s help in loving your spouse.

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