"But you, when you pray, go into your inner room, close your door and pray to your Father who is in secret, and your Father who sees what is done in secret will reward you.”
Matthew 6:6 (NASB)
If by chance you have ever heard us teach marriage or have perhaps been one of our clients, you have likely heard us discuss the powerful practice of praying the blessing over your spouse every day out loud so they can hear you. Truly this simple practice has changed too many marriages to count. We have had testimony after testimony of people whose marriages were in trouble and then begin to pray the blessing over each other daily and found that it was the beginning of what brought their marriages back from the brink. Let me say right here, that it is not some magic fairy dust that you sprinkle over your marriage that makes everything perfect. It is, however, a very powerful practice.
When we work with couples, we often find that they are coming to work with us because they have problems in their marriage. Rarely do couples come because they have a great marriage and just want to have someone to celebrate their great marriage with. If you are one of those people, we would be more than happy to help you celebrate!!! Couples who come to us usually have a laundry list of things that are wrong in their marriage. The wife has her list, the husband has his list and they need help fixing those lists. Funny thing is that most of the wives’ lists are areas that their husband needs to fix and the husbands’ list are problems their wives needs to fix. I have rarely seen a couple who comes for help with a list of their own faults they want us to help them work on. I’m pretty confident in saying this is true when they go to the Lord for help with their marriage. Again, let me reiterate that praying for your marriage is a powerful practice. It should be done daily. How you pray is very important.
There have been many times when I have been frustrated with Steven and gone to the Lord in prayer. It usually starts with something like, “God, you have problem with your son!” I have been known to lay out my own personal laundry list of things I think Steven needs to correct so we can live peaceably, or more importantly, I can have what I want. God is a patient listener and has rarely interrupted my barrage of complaints. Of course, when I have exhausted my feelings about the problem I am having with Steven, God begins to speak to me. Darn it if He doesn’t always bring the problem right back to something I am doing. He is not shy about reminding me about the areas of my life that need to change so that I can have the marriage I want. God always talks to me about me.
Over the years, I have learned to employ another one of the tips we share with all our clients, “If you have trouble in your marriage, draw a circle around yourself and work on everyone in the circle.” This powerful truth is one of God’s favorites to use with me. So, in Matthew 6:6 we read, “When you pray” the indication is that you are praying. My question for you is, what are you taking to the Lord in your prayers? Learning to approach God from the position of “I have problem” instead of “my spouse has a problem” positions you to receive the grace that you need and the wisdom to know how to respond to your spouse in every situation. What you do with that wisdom is up to you. The first step is always to choose to pray and once again, “When you pray,” pray about you.