Happy and lasting marriages always contain one core, but seemingly elusive, element: prayer. Prayer releases a relational resource into the marriage and family. Hearts are filled with peace; we have energy by which we interact in a quality way with those around us; and when prayer abounds, a deterrent is in place against potential attacks from the enemy. A prayerful marriage maintains a preemptive posture, a defensive boundary making relational intrusions less likely. How can we build a marriage like this?
1. Connect Individually with God
The first and foremost way to have a prayerful marriage is to keep your individual lives full of consistent encounter with God. Guys: Be a praying husband. Gals: Be a praying wife. The result: Your marriage will be prayerful.
Each spouse seeking to abide in God’s presence produces a life-giving flow in the marriage. It’s virtually impossible for a married couple to grow stagnant in their relationship when each spouse is having fresh encounters with God. The joy of discovery becomes a source of strength to the marital bond. The more I personally discover the treasure I have in Christ, the more I have to invest in my marriage.
In our book Longing for Eden: Embracing God’s Vision in Your Marriage, I said it this way: “When I’m filled to overflowing, my marriage gets the spillover. The more beautiful God looks to me, the more beautiful my wife looks to me.” A useful metaphor for me is that of a contact lens; once inserted, your vision is transformed. When I’m seeing God rightly, perceiving His glory, every facet of my marriage is enhanced.