I’ve been doing a good bit of premarital counseling lately, and I’ve married quite a few folks over the years. There’s lots of great advice in the Bible and other books, but here are four pieces of advice that have really helped me throughout my marriage.
I’m still trying to apply them, and I’d encourage you to as well, whether you’re getting married in two weeks or celebrating your 20th anniversary.
1. Try to be the biggest servant in the house.
This is my commandment, that you love one another as I have loved you. Jn. 15:12
And how did Jesus love us? By giving himself up for us (Eph. 5:25).
He came not to be served but to serve and give his life as a ransom for many (Mk. 10:45). Jesus didn’t ask, “What am I getting out of this?” but concerned himself with our welfare.
Genuine love is not primarily a feeling but a costly decision to sacrifice yourself for the good of another person. Have this mentality—I want to be the biggest servant in the house.
Don’t evaluate how your spouse is serving you, but ask yourself, “How can I better serve my spouse?”
2. Make God your source of satisfaction, not your spouse.
Satisfy us in the morning with your steadfast love, that we may rejoice and be glad all our days. Ps. 90:14
Remember—only God can satisfy our thirst. In Jeremiah 2:13, God said, “My people have committed two evils: They have forsaken me, the fountain of living waters, and hewed out cisterns for themselves, broken cisterns that can hold no water.”
It is evil to look to anything (or anyone) other than God to satisfy us. Anything other than God is a “broken cistern” that can’t hold water—can’t satisfy.
Remember, no human being can satisfy another human being. Your spouse can’t fulfill you, make you happy or meet all your needs.
Put God first in your marriage by regularly taking in his word, praying and fellowshipping with other believers. He will satisfy you with his love, which you will then be able to pour out to your spouse.