Surprisingly enough, love isn’t what differentiates a marriage relationship from other relationships. We all have many relationships in life that are defined by their deep and genuine love for one another.
One of the greatest factors that separates a marriage relationship from all other relationships is the continued commitment to one another.
This commitment to stand by one another’s side in all of life’s moments, to constantly put one another first, and to choose one another over and over again. It’s a deep sense of commitment that allows a relationship between husband and wife to grow roots far deeper than love alone.
The thrilling burst of romantic honeymoon type love will ebb and flow, but an unwavering sense of commitment is fundamental to a lifelong marriage. God created marriage to be a committed relationship between one man and one woman for life. Marriage is a gift from God that should be cared for and stewarded well.
It’s easy to lose sight of what marriage is all about in the midst of packed schedules, raising children, maintaining other relationships, and the many other aspects of life that pull you away from focusing on your marriage.
But the hope for every marriage is to draw closer and closer together with each passing year, allowing God to use your union to point others to him.
Here are three vital commitments both you and your spouse should make that will keep your marriage strong over the course of your life together.
1. The Commitment To Never Compromise Trust
Trust is easily broken and not easily built. It takes time to decipher whether or not you can truly trust someone. This is a fundamental aspect to any relationship and is absolutely crucial for marriage.
Having a high regard for trust and honesty in your marriage will eliminate many problems that arise between husband and wife. As you step into the covenant of marriage, you’re promising to care for one another in every way. This means you have to keep your foundation strong. Both husband and wife should feel confident that they can count on one another.
When trust is intact, freedom and peace become the tone of the relationship. When trust is broken, the entire relationship—past, present, and future—is called into question.
Certainly, recovery is possible. But it’s a long and difficult journey. Agreeing to give a high regard to trust will allow you to not only endure your lifelong commitment to one another, but to actually enjoy it. This will strengthen the bond within your marriage. It will create a culture of certainty, regardless of the uncertain situations that will arise.
This isn’t only a good practice to maintain in your marriage but really is a standard every Christian should hold themselves to.
Do not lie to one another, seeing that you have put off the old self with its practices (Colossians 3:9)
The way Christians live, including their marriages, should look differently from the world. We shouldn’t be comfortable lying to our spouses because it makes things less messy or maintains the facade of happiness. The saying, “It’s easier to ask for forgiveness than permission” is often terrible advice when it comes to building a lifelong relationship. That’s because this usually implies a low regard for honesty and trust.
Caring for your spouse and for the commitment you’ve made to them means you are never willing to compromise truth, regardless of the cost. It’s a lot easier to work through the difficulty of being honest with one another than it is to work through the harm of a secret.
Your marriage will have the greatest opportunity to thrive and be resilient throughout the challenges life brings when you place trust and honesty at the top of the list.
2. The Commitment To Remove Your Backup Plan
One of the most popular bible verses used during weddings is Matthew 19:6, we particularly love the latter half of the verse.
So they are no longer two but one flesh. What therefore God has joined together, let not man separate. (Matthew 19:6)
There is an excitement and zeal as you look down the aisle, staring your soon-to-be spouse in the eyes. You dream of the life you will build, the memories you will create, the bond you will grow, and the intimacy you will share. Your optimism to conquer every obstacle and challenge with the person you love by your side is overwhelming. You believe with every ounce of you that the two of you can endure anything.
But the days and years after the day you walked down the aisle begin to grate on your optimistic outlook of what your relationship with your spouse really means. There may be days when you wonder whether marriage is really meant for the two of you. It seems like you’re putting in more effort than it’s worth.
This is real. The coming together of two broken, flawed, and different people is simultaneously hard and beautiful.
One of the ways to make your marriage even more difficult is to live with a backup plan. If divorce is an option in your mind, there’s a limit to how much you’re willing to do to make your marriage work. (Now, it’s important for me to note that sometimes divorce is a necessary option. The bible makes space for divorce when it comes to cases of abuse, abandonment, or adultery.)
Understanding marriage as a lifelong commitment even when it’s hard and painful is a biblical understanding of marriage. Being committed to one another means you are committed to paving roads forward as a couple. You are committed to choosing your spouse over and over again. God’s design for marriage is that two become one and stay as one for the duration of their lives.
Through this lifelong bond with your spouse, you will grow and form a life that would have never been possible if you were apart. The experience of lifelong unity is meant to be a blessing, not a curse.
3. The Commitment To Relentlessly Tend to your Marriage
It’s not always a telenovela drama that causes a marriage to deteriorate. There are little things that will sneak in and rob your marriage of the blessing it is meant to be. It seems like you were once head over heels for one another and then you weren’t. You can’t quite pin what went wrong or why the fire went out. You blame life or chalk it up to real life.
Though it’s not realistic to live your entire life on the hilltop, this doesn’t mean marriage has to turn into a burden or a relationship you no longer find joy in.
In Song of Solomon, the bride is asking her groom to care for the foxes who were snatching up the fruits from their vineyard. The foxes and vineyards are being used as an allegory for their marriage.
Catch the foxes for us,
the little foxes
that spoil the vineyards,
for our vineyards are in blossom.
(Song of Solomon 2:15)
Whether it be other relationships, bad habits, or lack of effort, various factors can try to steal away the fruit of your marriage. There will be many hours, weeks, months, and years that go into building up and caring for your marriage.
It’s important to be on guard against the foxes that will try to rob you of the fruit of your labor. Just like a farmer tends to his crops, you must tend to your marriage. This might require small daily habits to focus on your spouse or it might require larger intentional efforts. Staying committed to one another is driven through connection.
This isn’t always easy and there are factors that will disconnect you, that’s why you must regularly tend to your marriage. God desires for you and your spouse to invest in your relationship with one another and to place a high value on this commitment.Just like a farmer tends to his crops, you must tend to your marriage. Click To Tweet
Marriage doesn’t have to be a burden.
Every married couple would agree, marriage takes work. Sometimes that work can be fun and sometimes it feels exactly like work.
But in the end, your commitment to one another should lead you to a deeper sense of love, care, and selflessness. As you seek Jesus in your marriage, you will be transformed and have a clearer view of the beauty of your union to one another.
God never intended for marriage to feel like a bait and switch. It really can be a joy, blessing, and gift to your life. No one is more invested in the success of your marriage than God. Seek him from beginning to end and you will see him turn your relationship into something you never thought possible.
No one is more invested in the success of your marriage than God.
Order your copy of our companion devotionals written for Christians who are single, dating, engaged, married, or anywhere in between. These uplifting, thought-provoking devotional are full of wisdom and prayers to help you lay the foundation of a strong union with your spouse.
Ninety days of devotions and practical insights guide you as you begin your journey to marriage.
- Plan in any phase―Find wisdom whether you are with someone and looking to keep God at the center of your relationship or single and seeking guidance in his plan.
- Prepare your heart―Pray and reflect on Biblical lessons to ready your own heart and soul for a God-centered union.
- Look to the future―Understand the person who will become your future spouse and set expectations for your modern marriage.
- Build a strong marriage―Gain insight into everyday ways you can strengthen your relationship to stand the test of time.