Thursday, September 5, 2013
4 Tips for Implementing Prayer in Your Marriage
The old adage goes "A couple that prays together, stays together." That's only a clever saying without any real statistical evidence, right? Wrong.
A Gallup poll conducted a study specifically on that question found that only 1% of all couples that prayed together daily got divorced (1 in 1156 couples). That is an amazing statistic when you consider that the national statistic is 50% of all marriages end in divorce.
The University of Texas, San Antonio, did a research project for the "Journal of Marriage and Family" of 1387 couples. The study found that couples who share practices such as Bible reading and prayer in the home had strong marriages and a higher degree of satisfaction in their relationship.
However, most statistics bear witness that most couples are not spending time in Bible reading or prayer. It is estimated that only 4% of Christian couples pray together. Did you catch that? Christian couples!
Only 1% of couples who pray together are likely to get divorced, yet only 4% of Christian couples pray together. This is why Christian couples have the same divorce rate as non-Christians.
Christian couples need to start praying together; it's good for their marriage and the longevity of it. If there is a "duh" sentence in this entire blog, it is that one. But while it may be a big ole "duh," it is not happening.
So how can you start implementing prayer together? Here are some thoughts:
1. Talk to your spouse about your desire to begin praying together daily.
When you share your desire with your spouse, share with them these statistics. Read the article to them or send it to them. You may find your spouse desires to do this too, but felt insecure about bringing it up.
2. Acknowledge you have insecurities praying aloud together and then get over it.
I know that sounds harsh, but you have to get over it. It is okay to acknowledge having insecurities about praying. The reason we have insecurities with praying aloud with our spouse is that they know our junk and that we are not perfect. This makes us feel hypocritical trying to "act all spiritual." But praying together is not acting spiritual. It is a vital and much needed element in your marriage. Quit being insecure. Realize that neither of you are perfect. Understand your prayer is not graded. And focus in on talking to God together with your spouse.
3. Figure out what time of the day works for you, schedule it, and do it.
Not every couple can commit to the same time as others. Perhaps you and your spouse would have to do different times on different days due to schedule. But the key is to plan it and do it. Don't wimp out when you feel the insecurity and fear welling up. Determine to begin building the habit. Grab your spouse by the hand, say "It's time to pray," then do it.
4. Create a prayer plan/schedule.
A prayer plan or schedule is a list of things you can pray for as a couple. You need to pray for each other and your children daily. You can also pray for those pressing needs in your or a loved one's life. But you may also decide to pray together for a number of other things. For example: Mondays you can pray for your church and leaders. Tuesdays could be reserved for your children's teacher(s). Wednesdays could be prayer for the President, our government officials, and country. Thursday could be prayer for each others parents/siblings/nephews/nieces. Fridays can focus on friends. Saturdays are good for focusing on church services the next day. Sundays are perfect for praying for each other's spiritual growth. This is only an example schedule. You can create your own list and your own days.
Couples that pray together stay together. The old adage is actually true. Statistics bear it out. So take these tips and start implementing them. It's the closest thing to divorce-proofing your marriage.
Why do you believe so few Christian couples pray together regularly? Leave your thoughts in the comment section below.
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