5 Ways to Build A Durable Marriage
This beautiful couple would live happily ever after….
(or so I thought).
Of course, today we know better. It was neither a happy marriage nor one that would last. (so much for fairy tales…)
But here’s the irony.
There are many ordinary married couples where the outward appearance would suggest their marriage would never last… Yet they do!
- Getting married when he is 21 and she is only 19. But 30+ years later, they’re still happily married. (This is Lori and me!)
- A marriage where one of them is paralyzed from the chest down. But they are now married a couple of years and even planning to have a baby.
- An environment where he travels all the time for work and she stays home. But with a little help from technology (cellphone / texting / email / Skype), they connect more often than most other married couples.
It’s important to note that a marriage is not defined by where it starts (young or old, rich or poor); or by its current environment (easy or challenging, simple or complex). Our lives are constantly changing.
The real question is this:
Is your life defining your marriage or is your marriage defining your life?
If you want to have a lasting marriage that defines your life, you need to make it durable.
How to Build a Durable Marriage
First we need to understand what it means to be durable.
Durability = long lasting; or permanence by virtue of the power to resist stress or force.
In other words, a durable marriage is one that can resist stress or outside forces. So how do you build an environment that can repel the pressures of stress?
Here are 5 things that every married couple can easily do (or at least try):
- Live with integrity. Nothing replaces good character. Always be honest and open with each other.
- Address the issues. Don’t hide them or let them slide. Deal with the molehills before they become mountains. But remember: do all things out of love.
- Be willing to forgive. Hey, mistakes happen. It’s amazing how much grace we give a complete stranger. Your spouse deserves at least as much grace (and if your spouse makes the same mistake 70 times, forgive them 71 times).
- Encourage your spouse. If you’re not your spouse’s biggest fan, who is? Lori writes about 5 ways to encourage your spouse. Practice them all, over and over…
- Invest in your marriage. Read books. Go to conferences. Continually seek out new resources that will help improve your marriage. It’s the best investment you’ll ever make!
Regardless of where your marriage started or the current environment, if you will commit to and implement these 5 things, you will be much more likely to experience a lasting marriage.
You might even say that you and your spouse are living Happily Ever After….
What are some other ways to build a durable marriage?
Today’s value was selected from the “Durability-Focus” category, based on the e-book Developing Your Differentiating Values.