What Makes 16 Years of Marriage Work

Bride Groom

Dear Readers,

16 years ago today–June 6, 1998–I married my best friend and the love of my life. His online name is “Lefty.” It seems like yesterday that I was the nervous (terrified, actually!) bride that you see in the picture. You can see the fear in my eyes because I would be making one of the most important decisions of my life.

I’m glad that I made that decision. I firmly believe that God’s hand was in the process, otherwise I wouldn’t be writing today’s blog.

Today, I decided to post a few tips about why our marriage is successful. And, by the way, please know that I (of course) don’t have all of the answers. It’s what worked for us, and I hope that it will help all of you newlyweds out there!

10 Tips for a Successful Marriage (I Thessalonians 5:12-24):

1. Put God first in your life and your marriage. After all, God is the Source of all love, goodness, and beauty…it helps to be plugged into that Source.

2. Put the other guy first (after God). If you put him/her first, and he/she is putting you first, then you both win.

3. Worship together. Not only will you be enjoying the Source of all love, goodness, and beauty–you will also be a part of an extended family who is cheering your marriage on!

4. Pray…a lot. Especially if you are having marital problems. Give thanks for your mate…even if you don’t feel like it at a time.

5. Use lots of humor. Tough times get a little easier with a dose of levity.

6. Kiss…a lot. I’ve heard that couples who kiss at least once a day have longer lives.

7. Be forgiving. When I was a family studies major in college, I was taught that you don’t want to bring up past wrongs…especially in the heat of an argument.

8. Do fun things together. (This is Lefty’s input…I was running out of tips.)

9. Have lots of date nights. Let the kids stay with gramma for a night. Hire a baby sitter…date nights are an investment in your family. If you are broke–like most of us–do a kid-swap with another couple.

10. Be patient. I know that Lefty surely has been patient with me, and for this, I am truly thankful.

Remember, marriage is a covenant relationship between God, you, and your spouse. That is very serious stuff, dear Readers. I pray that each of us will enjoy many years of wedding anniversaries to come.

Warmest regards,
Stephanie

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