As Christians, our first and foremost relationship is with our Lord Jesus Christ. However, the most intimate relationship we can experience with another human being is through marriage. In the Bible, God tells us that He wants to see us succeed and flourish in our marital relationships.
Marriages are hard work. They take dedication, as well as unconditional love on a daily basis. The success of a happy union is not the responsibility of one partner above the other. For a happy marriage, the couple has to work as a team. As a team, you can turn to the Bible as well as outside sources such as therapy for help.
Yet, the idea of an ideal marriage is much easier than actually creating and maintaining one. Fortunately, you and your spouse can mend a troubled marriage with the power of prayer and the Bible.
In this article, we will embrace the words our Lord has left us to help our marriages in difficult times. We will also embrace marriage prayers to assist us when we are most vulnerable.
The Bible tells us what marriage is in Malachi 2:14.
Marriage is a holy covenant before God. Not only does God see this union as an emotional and physical union, but also a legal and moral commitment. Perhaps most importantly, marriage is a promise to Him. When you divorce your spouse, you break the promise you made to God and disrupt the institution of marriage He created.
The Bible doesn’t just teach us about marriage but also about the roles husbands and wives fill.
Many responsibilities befall upon each spouse. The main cornerstone of that union is love.
As quoted in Ephesians 5:25, “Husbands, love your wives.” and in Titus 2:4, “teach the young women ...to love their husbands.”
Love should be selfless and a virtue held with the utmost importance.
Married couples need to resolve their problems before these issues create a divide in their union. If these problems are left unaddressed, they can brew mistrust, bitterness, hate, and even domestic abuse.
In an unresolved environment, these unhappy relationships can end in divorce.
God does not want to see the marriages of His children end in such bitter disputes. He does not want children to be raised in broken homes. In the Bible, our Lord Jesus Christ has many positive things to say about the union of marriage.
As explained in Matthew 19:6 and Mark 10:8, Jesus describes marriage as two people trying to live as “one flesh.”
You stop thinking as “me” when you are married and begin thinking as “we.” A married couple functions as a unit together. The needs of one is not more important than the needs of the other.
Our own addictions can easily bring about the failure of a marriage. Whether it's alcoholism, substance abuse, or one of the many other temptations Satan puts in our daily lives, addictions weaken our relationships with those we hold close. Fortunately, prayer can help.
Here is an example of a prayer that asks for guidance for a marriage that’s in trouble.
Dear God, please guide me in Your ways. Please help me see without the influence of temptation from alcohol influencing my actions and words. Please help me be strong enough to not indulge in this addiction, and break free from the hold it has on me. I can see now alcohol is preventing me from living a healthy and devotional Christian-based lifestyle.
It is bringing anger into my heart and a divide into my marriage. Please, Lord God, give me the strength I need to walk away from this substance that has influenced my life for the worse. In Jesus's name, Amen.
A lack of forgiveness can also create a divide in marriage.
There are times where we may feel we do not have the strength to forgive our partner for an act they have committed. Whether this act was a sin, an action that caused mistrust in the relationship, or a lie, do not underestimate the power of prayer in seeking guidance.
Each person needs to be heard, even if it’s difficult to sit down and listen to words you may not want to hear. The truth is, these words need to be heard, and each person needs to be listened to equally. The danger comes when communication stops. The more you put off emotions such as resentment, anger, and disappointment, the more these feelings fester and build.
Here is an example of a prayer for forgiveness.
Dear Heavenly Father,
Please forgive my husband’s transgressions of being dishonest with me. He has told me he has been going to the gym at night but has really been going to a friend’s house to gamble. Before our marriage, he told me he would no longer partake in these activities.
I also pray to you for strength in forgiving him. I want to forgive him, but I am having trouble finding forgiveness in my heart. Not only has he lied to me, but he has also been using our money to participate in this activity. Please give me the strength I need to forgive him. In Jesus’ name, Amen.
Temptation is another root cause of crumbling marriages.
If you feel the pull of temptation, which can negatively impact your marriage, offer up this prayer to the Lord.
Dear Heavenly Father, please hear my prayer. I feel myself becoming weak in the eyes of Christianity. I feel temptation pulling me towards adultery, even though I do not want to stray from the loving embrace of my wife. May God please give me the strength to stay faithful and turn away from the temptation of sexual immorality and keep my thoughts pure.
I am humbling myself before You, praying to not becoming the prey of the devil and his temptations, as You told us in 1 Peter 5:6-8
‘Therefore humble yourselves under the mighty hand of God, that He may exalt you at the proper time, casting all your anxiety on Him, because He cares for you. Be of sober spirit, be on the alert. Your adversary, the devil, prowls around like a roaring lion, seeking someone to devour.’
Please help my marriage stay firm in its Christianity and our beliefs in you, God. Please help the union between my wife and me be strong and keep me from straying from the ways of Christianity as well as our marriage. In the name of Jesus, Amen.
Temptation does not have to just target an individual, it can focus on a couple. Use this prayer for the protection of your marriage when you feel like outside temptations are overcoming you and your spouse.
Dear Lord, I seek your guidance in my time of weakness. I feel the devil has put daily obstacles in the way of my family from living a righteous and Christian life.
Please help my marriage stay strong in our beliefs and stay on the path You lead us on. Through God's power, please give us the strength to avoid these temptations and protect my family from the evils of the world. In Jesus’s name, Amen.
Selfish acts can create a wide rift between a loving couple. Putting your own needs and wants before those of your partner can cause damaging results. Once you enter your union with your wife or husband, you are no longer making choices for yourself but as a team.
Here is a prayer for those who may find themselves struggling with selfishness in their marriage.
Heavenly Father, I have been selfish in my marriage. I have been putting my own needs and wants before that of my husband. I have been neglectful of his needs in situations regarding our marriage, as well as outside of our union. Please help heal our marriage from my selfish acts.
Please help me be more accepting and understanding of my husband, and help me mend the damage I have done to our marriage. Help us embrace each other's needs and make this marriage successful again.
As You tell us in 1 Peter 4:8, ‘Most important of all, continue to show deep love for each other, for love covers a multitude of sins.’
Please help us find each other again as well as the deep love we used to display daily, as we did at the beginning of our marriage. In Jesus's name, Amen.
We all want to have a successful marriage. However, conflict rears its head for even the most picture-perfect couples.
Here are some useful Bible verses about marriage and what the Lord has to say about it.
Matthew 19:6 "So they are no longer two, but one flesh. What therefore God has joined together, let no man separate.”
Ephesians 4:32 "Be kind to one another, tender-hearted, forgiving each other, just as God in Christ also has forgiven you.”
Genesis 2:24 "For this reason a man shall leave his father and his mother, and be joined to his wife; and they shall become one flesh.”
1 Corinthians 7:10-11 "But to the married I give instructions, not I, but the Lord, that the wife should not leave her husband (but if she does leave, she must remain unmarried, or else be reconciled to her husband), and that the husband should not divorce his wife.”
Colossians 3:13 "Bearing with one another, and forgiving each other, whoever has a complaint against anyone; just as the Lord forgave you, so also should you.”
The world we live in is filled with temptations that can come between even the happiest of marriages. The evil one presents daily obstacles and challenges that can easily end a successful union, tearing apart families at the seams.
These temptations can take many forms, from the allure of adultery to the seduction of greed and money. Luckily daily prayer for a better marriage can help.
As Christians, we must remember what and who is most important to us. Our priorities stem from leading a loving Christian lifestyle. Our hearts must remain pure and free of sin as we stay on the right path. In a happy marriage, God's word has an important role to play. He is always there for us in tough times when we need His strength most.