Daily Success
Institute in Basic Life Principles

Command 33 : Honor Marriage | Day 225

Identify Marriage Prerequisites!

They were very much in love and confident that God was leading them into marriage. There didn't seem to be any reason why this couple wouldn't live "happily ever after." However, after the wedding, problems began. The husband continued to confide in his parents rather than in his wife, and when disagreements arose, he would side with his parents. This produced tension in the husband and wife's relationship as well as in the wife's relationship with her in-laws. The strain on the marriage was great, because the husband failed to understand the implications of Christ's command:

Command Thirty-Three: “... He which made them at the beginning made them male and female, and said, For this cause shall a man leave father and mother, and shall cleave to his wife: and they twain shall be one flesh ... . What therefore God hath joined together, let not man put asunder” (Matthew 19:4-6).

In this command, Jesus clearly reaffirms God's original design for marriage. It is to be a lifelong covenant between a man and a woman and the time when two individuals leave their parents and become one with each other. This new husband failed to recognize the need to emotionally leave his parents and make his relationship with his wife a higher priority.

In another family, a young wife was wondering if she had married the right man. Before they were married, her husband had talked about the Lord, but now he had little time or interest in spiritual things. He had a good job, yet it could not support the expensive "toys" he insisted on buying. They were deep in debt, and life seemed to lack any real purpose.

The turmoil in their marriage was a result of the husband not understanding three essential areas that every man should develop before marriage:

1. A Vibrant Walk With God

Fellowship with the Lord should be the primary focus of our lives. Therefore, it is vital that a man has a genuine relationship with the Lord before he gets married. The qualities that come from a vibrant walk with God are foundational for true success in all areas of life, including marriage, because they are the qualities that every woman inwardly longs for in a husband.

2. Wisdom in Financial Decisions

God has given a man the responsibility of providing for the needs of his family. (See I Timothy 5:8.) This requires that he works diligently, develops marketable skills, and is able to make wise purchases. The more skilled he is in these areas before marriage, the less financial tensions he and his wife are likely to experience after marriage.

3. A Powerful Life Message

A "life message" is an ongoing explanation of how God is working through our human weaknesses to show the riches of His grace and the exceeding greatness of His power. If a husband is to be a successful spiritual leader in his home, he needs to be attentive to the ways God is working in his life and able to share these lessons with others.

A man who is faithful to develop these three areas while he is single will establish the foundation for a fulfilling and fruitful marriage in the future. Whether we are married or not, let's evaluate these three areas in our own lives and make the ongoing development of them a priority.

“For this cause shall a man leave father and mother, and shall cleave to his wife: and they twain shall be one flesh ... . What therefore God hath joined together, let not man put asunder” (Matthew 19:5-6).

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Contributing writer: Bill Gothard