What are the tips for a good marriage? What are the foundations of a good marriage?
Every marriage needs a good foundation for such a union to stand strong through the tests and trials of life.
Below are at least 7 areas that are important to having a good marriage.
1. LEAVE & CLEAVE
Genesis 2:24 NKJV – Therefore a man shall leave his father and mother and be joined to his wife, and they shall become one flesh.
Have you ever had problems with your in-laws despite of the fact that your in-laws lived in a different home? Well, imagine the kind of problems you would have if you lived with your in-laws in the same house.
Genesis 2:24 says that a man shall leave his mother & father to live with his wife and they shall become one flesh.
Therefore 2 things are important in this scripture in order to establish a good foundation for marriage:
a) A man (and wife) must LEAVE his/her parents. This means leaving your parent’s home so that you and your spouse can live under a different roof.
b) A man (and wife) must CLEAVE to his/her spouse. This speaks of becoming united and inseparable.
Therefore it is difficult for a married couple to leave & cleave if they are still under the roof of their parents or influence of other family members.
2. A HUSBAND WHO LOVES
Ephesians 5:25 NKJV – Husbands, love your wives, just as Christ also loved the church and gave Himself for her,
According to Ephesians 5:25-33, husbands are required to love their wives. The kind of love described is an unfailing and unconditional love.
The husband is required to love his husband in 3 ways:
a) Love as Christ loves the Church & gave Himself for her (vs 25)
b) Love his wife as he loves himself or his own body (vs 28,33)
c) Love by nourishing & cherishing her as Christ does the church (vs 29)
Nourishing is defined as: providing with food or other substances necessary for growth, health and good condition
Cherishing is defined as: to protect and care for someone lovingly
3. A HUSBAND WHO LEADS
Ephesians 5:23 NKJV – For the husband is head of the wife, as also Christ is head of the church; and He is the Savior of the body.
Husbands are to lead their families. The scriptures describe the husband as the one who is head just as Christ is Head over the Church.
Every institution, including the institution of marriage must have a leader. God in His infinite wisdom has declared that a husband is to lead the wife. Leading one’s family does not mean becoming a dictator or autocratic in the home. A husband is ultimately accountable to God for how he leads his wife and family. Just as Adam was ultimately accountable to God for the fall of man and for allowing Eve to be deceived (Genesis 3:17), the husband is responsible to God and the husbands provides a covering for his wife.
4. A WIFE WHO SUBMITS
Ephesians 5:22-24 NKJV – Wives, submit to your own husbands, as to the Lord. 23 For the husband is head of the wife, as also Christ is head of the church; and He is the Savior of the body. 24 Therefore, just as the church is subject to Christ, so let the wives be to their own husbands in everything
Submission does not mean that a wife cannot disagree with her husband. Submission does not make the wife a slave or a servant of the husband. Neither does submission suggest that the wife is in any form less equal to her husband. Both husband and wife are equal before God, however it is only their functions within the marriage which differ.
Submission is the act of yielding or consenting to the authority of another. Submission incorporates voluntary obedience and respect.
According to Ephesians 5:22-24, wives are required to submit to their wives in the following ways:
a) Submit to your own husband
b) Submit as unto the Lord
Why are wives required to submit and not the husbands? The answer is found in Ephesians 5:23, “For the husband is the head of the wife as Christ is the Head of the church…”
The Church is the bride of Christ whilst Christ is the bridegroom. Therefore the marriage between a husband and wife parallels the marriage between Christ & the Church.
5. A WIFE WHO RESPECTS HER HUSBAND
Ephesians 5:33 NKJV – Nevertheless let each one of you in particular so love his own wife as himself, and let the wife see that she respects her husband.
It’s interesting to note that under the inspiration of the Holy Spirit, Paul does not also ask wives to love their husbands. Love of course is an important foundation of any relationship and both husbands and wives must love one another in their relationship. However, the Scriptures emphasize that wives must respect their husbands. Why? The male personality in a marriage apparently yearns for respect from his wife. Men tend to respond better and feel more appreciated when they are respected by their wives.
Submission and respect are like 2 sides of the same coin. A wife who respects her husband will automatically submit to him. Also a wife who submits to her husband does so because she respects her husband.
6. TRANSPARENT COMMUNICATION
Ephesians 4:25-26 NKJV – Therefore, putting away lying, “Let each one of you speak truth with his neighbor,” for we are members of one another. 26 “Be angry, and do not sin”: do not let the sun go down on your wrath,
Secrets and lies are never a good foundation for any relationship, including a marriage. Every relationship is built on trust. If a couple cannot trust one another, it is difficult for that relationship to stand or grow.
It’s therefore imperative for couples to always be transparent and open in relation to one’s feelings, one’s thoughts, and one’s perspectives.
A couple should not keep grudges between each other nor should they allow issues or problems to remain unresolved or uncommunicated.
Therefore leaving issues unresolved is dangerous to the relationship.
7. GOD AT THE CENTRE OF THE MARRIAGE
Marriage itself is not an institution that was created by man. Marriage was created by God. Therefore God is the One who set the guidelines as to how a marriage should function & what roles the husband and wife play in the relationship.
A marriage that is without God and without the mind of God in it is bound to fail.
Therefore God is the most important foundation for any relationship, including marriage.
Genesis 2:21-24 NKJV
And the Lord God caused a deep sleep to fall on Adam, and he slept; and He took one of his ribs, and closed up the flesh in its place. 22 Then the rib which the Lord God had taken from man He made into a woman, and He brought her to the man.
23 And Adam said:
“This is now bone of my bones
And flesh of my flesh;
She shall be called Woman,
Because she was taken out of Man.”
24 Therefore a man shall leave his father and mother and be joined to his wife, and they shall become one flesh.