This is a guest post by Amy, her advice is for a passion filled marriage is excellent and I hope you are as inspired as I was.
Amy von Borstel writes:
After a tumultuous season in our marriage and a brief separation, my husband and I decided to do whatever it took to get our lives back on track.
We had met when I was an eighteen-year-old student and gotten married when I was nineteen.
Over a decade later we had two children, piles of debt from several failed businesses, and the stress had taken a toll on our relationship.
Our marriage hit rock bottom.
Then after a season of brokenness, the healing of our rocky relationship began. Through prayer, forgiveness, and the love of Christ, our marriage not only survived—it was gloriously restored.
To celebrate what God had done for us, in 2010, we renewed our vows and celebrated our 25th wedding anniversary.
It’s now better than it’s ever been, twenty-eight years after we said, “I do.”
Marriage is a gift from God that is supposed to be a beautiful mirror image of the love between Christ and His church. It’s a covenant that is meant to last our entire lives.
How do we keep the passion alive throughout our lifetimes? Is it possible to be deeply in love after two or three decades of being together? Absolutely!
I will never stop sharing the story of my restored marriage. It’s a story of redemption that I hope will encourage other married couples to never give up.
A few years ago, a friend told me about a great idea she had for putting together a “Happy Marriage Recipe Booklet” for a bride-to-be she knew. My friend asked me to contribute my own special recipe for a great marriage.
After a few days of praying and searching my heart for the best marriage tips, I came up with a top ten list that has contributed to my thriving marriage.
1. Live a life that is fully surrendered to Christ. Let Jesus be the lover of your soul—your primary love relationship. Do not expect your spouse to meet the needs of your soul that only the Lord can meet.
2. Forgive every day. Keep a pure and tender heart toward your spouse always. Never let the sun go down on your anger.
3. Pray together every day. Pray for each other and your marriage every day.
4. Talk intimately every day. Let your spouse see your heart. Share your dreams and the secret places of your soul to cultivate intimacy.
5. Compliment each other verbally every day. Never criticize. Ask the Lord to change your spouse’s weaknesses. The Lord will purify your spouse if you pray for him/her often.
6. Keep a gratitude journal. Write at least one thing every day about your spouse that you are grateful for. Keep it in a place where it can easily be picked up and read every day.
7. Intentionally cultivate romance. Write love letters. Have candle light dinners. Dance together. Laugh together. Play together. Act as you did when you first met your spouse. Look your best for him/her. Take care of yourself.
8. Be your spouse’s best friend. Never put anything or anyone but Jesus before your spouse. Your children, friends, family, church, work, hobbies should never take higher priority than your marriage.
9. Never ever gossip about your spouse. Gossip will destroy a marriage relationship. Go directly to your spouse to discuss problems. If there is a serious problem, seek wise counsel from a pastor or licensed counselor. Don’t talk about your marriage problems with friends or family members.
10. Affair-proof your marriage. Never talk on the phone, be alone, or have heart conversations with the opposite gender unless it’s a close family member. This is how affairs start. Innocent phone calls to a friend’s spouse can lead to sharing intimate details of your life. Heart conversations should be reserved for only your spouse or close members of your family. Even same gender friendships can rob your marriage of intimacy. Don’t be tempted to share your most precious pearls with a friend. Save the treasures in your heart for your spouse. If you want a passion-filled marriage, you shouldn’t be best friends with someone else.
The list could go on and on. But these ten things have impacted my home life more than anything else. My marriage is not perfect. It’s an ongoing learning process for both me and my husband.
But I know for sure—a marriage built on the Rock of Christ will never fail.
It will serve to purify your heart more than any other relationship on earth. And it will be filled with passion and love beyond measure!
I am my beloved’s and my beloved in mine; he grazes among the lilies.” -Song of Solomon 6:3
By Amy Borstel
Amy von Borstel is a wife and mother of two children. She attributes her twenty-eight year marriage and happy home to the love of her Lord. She knows the joy that comes from living a life of faith-filled prayer. She’s been a writer since she was a little girl, writing poetry and keeping journals as a way to find peace and rest in her soul. She is passionate about helping orphans and seeing people find abundance through an intimate relationship with Christ. Read her devotionals and faith stories at www.liveabundantlynow.com. Connect with Amy on Twitter: @_liveabundantly.