5 Steps to Divorce-Proof Your Marriage
I visited a church recently where the pastor told me, “Our church is facing an epidemic. Six or seven of our couples are getting divorced.” I was astonished. More than that, though, I was hurt. I would never condemn or judge a couple facing divorce. I’ve actually walked with couples in the middle of divorce and I have never heard such brokenness.
I have heard the pain of divorce being compared to death—because, in a way, it is.
Most of the people I know who have endured divorce had legitimate reasons to pursue it. I’m not talking to the people who have wept, agonized, and sought God’s face in marital crisis. This article is for before we reach that point.
Divorce should have never become trendy in Hollywood. But it is. Divorce should have never become a symbol of liberty and newfound identity, because marriage should do that. One of the unfortunate things about divorce is when a person entertains it as an option. A seed is planted.
These are five things that every individual should do before divorce ever becomes an option.
- Pray and listen. Don’t just present your case to the Lord without intending to listen. (This isn’t really prayer; it’s more like a monologue that the Lord listens in on). As in every area of our Christian walk, we want to be led by the Holy Spirit. Listen-to that still, small voice. Listen-to what He says in His Word. Listen-to godly council in your life.
- Fast. Fast for your spouse. Fast for your destiny. Fast for your marriage. When we fast, we smother the worldly appetites of the flesh and apprehend our souls to communion with Christ. Fasting will expose selfish motives and align us rightly with God’s ways. Carnality will be under the knife in a devoted fast.
- Get counseling. This is one of the first things people think of, but it is extremely effective. Finding another married couple with years of experience to mentor you is a great way to see what you haven’t been able to on your own. As many great marriage counselors say, even if your spouse won’t go with you, you should at least go. This brings me to the next point…
- Look at yourself. When someone we love was in the middle of a huge marital crisis, my wife told the woman, “This isn’t a marriage problem. There are deep issues that need to be looked at; the marriage is a byproduct.” Is this a marriage problem or a me problem? I believe in personal revival. From a broad perspective, true revival, where Christ’s Kingdom saturates every man, woman, girl, and boy, begins when I look at my need for Christ and respond. In marriage, what toxic thoughts, words, or deeds am I pouring into the marriage?
- Fight! Don’t go down easy! Before divorce becomes a possibility, fight against hell’s war on marriage! Spiritual warfare is a crucial part of a Christ-centered marriage. Use your heavenly resources to fight for and protect “what God has joined together!” (Matthew 19:6) I know it hurts. I know there was fault on his or her part. I believe people when they say they pleaded and prayed for God to save the marriage! Now, before being driven to the courthouse steps, stand on God’s purpose for your marriage! Pray that the devourer (Satan) will be forced back and that the Lord would reveal any hidden bitterness. Remind the enemy Whose you are and that you believe in Godly marriage!
Yes, divorce is real and it’s taking out thousands of marriages. Let us be found standing and believing that God’s beautiful plan for marriage will stand, and that our marriages will spark a marriage revival—where divorce has no name.