“Marriage is the voice of praying impossible prayers
in impossible situations for impossible solutions.”
There’s no doubt about it — marriage is hard work.
And love? — that’s totally a verb, not a state of eureka.
And the wise and the aged know this — growing a successful marriage on love and respect more often than not takes us on a journey where we’ve probably resisted the idea of change, of giving up control, of facing our own inner selfishness, our desire for autonomy, and the surrender to sacrifice — but must. And in doing so, we grow and change and mature, and that’s quite beautiful.
Prayer is God’s special invitation to come to Him with all our tears and fears, worries and weaknesses, trials and triumphs, and to find His love, His ways, His power overcoming our mountains of hurdles, our darkness, and every sadness.
It’s true — prayer strengthens us to be brave and heals us in every hurting places of our lives.
May these short prayers encourage you for days when you feel out of hope, out of steam and out of love. May you find rest in His Word alone.
15 PRAYERS FOR LOVING LARGE AND LIVING WELL
No man hath seen God at any time. If we love one another, God dwelleth in us, and His love is perfected in us. (I John 4:12)
Lord, thank You that You have not called us to perfectionism —- a standard no man can keep —- but to grow in Christ daily and to love each other strongly.
You’ve called us to love in action; preferring others above ourselves, and giving ourselves to benefit our spouse. We know that when we walk in this obedience, Your love is perfecting us and is perfected in us.
Help us today to simply be reduced to love.
To speak in love.
To think of love.
To judge all matters through the lens of love.
Any other view warps our sight, but in You, we see clearly, and we see You.
What therefore God hath joined together, let no man put asunder. (Mark 10:9)
Lord, let me live by this and hold on to this — You who have joined us together, will keep us together.
Let me not entertain any other thoughts when trialed, tired or tempted.
Help us to keep this marriage sacred, special, savoured.
Many waters cannot quench love, neither can the floods drown in. (Song of Solomons 8:7)
Thank you, Lord, for everything we’ve been through, that we can stand back and say, “You’ve been faithful to us in all things.”
And this is what we’ve learned about making our love richer, deeper and stronger:
Passion isn’t produced on hotbeds of lust, but on holy decisions of love; on bending ourselves down lower so we can raise each other higher and farther.
So help us, Lord, to learn to love large, to live well.
And Ruth said, “Intreat me not to leave thee, or to return from following after thee: for whither thou goest, I will go; and where thou lodges, I will lodge; thy people shall be my people, and thy God my God”. (Ruth 1:16)
May we Lord? — have this precious character of faithfulness…the rare quality of faith in people not jaded with discouragement or disillusionment. May we learn to love each other beyond our disappointment in each other. May we know that it is ultimately You we are serving and we can keep showing up because You will never fail us.
That Christ may dwell in your hearts by faith; that ye, being rooted and grounded in love, may be able to comprehend with all the saints what is the breadth, and length, and depth, and height; And to know the love of Christ, which passeth knowledge, that ye might be filled with all the fullness of God. (Ephesians 3:17-19)
Lord, there are so many layers in our heart that need a holy peeling, a sacred stripping. Let us be reduced to experiencing nothing more than Your love. We can’t wait to see how You’d move on our behalf as we chose to remain rooted and grounded in You. Let our joy abound in the limitless dimension of Your gifts for us today.
And we know that all things work together for good for them that love God, to them who are called according to His purpose. (Romans 8:28)
Thank you Lord — today we are believing that everything that has ever happened to us is never outside the parameter of Your knowledge of us.
We can pray more than pontificate.
Joy is our badge, never our bruises or brokenness.
And because You are a God that sees us through —- we will be strengthened in every circumstance.
He that loveth not knoweth not God; for God is love. (1 John 4:8)
We thank You Lord for the privilege of love; that we can give time even when we think we’re time tight, and sincerely support others to succeed ahead of us.
Thank You that love doesn’t have to be complicated, as long as it is Christ-centred.
Thank you for all the ways I can grow in You today as I practice love so practical, love so perfecting.
There be three things which are too wonderful for me, yea, four which i know not; The way of an eagle in the air; the way of a serpent upon a rock; the way of a ship in the midst of the sea; and the way of a man with a maid. (Proverbs 30:18-19)
Lord this is unbelievable: how do we fall in love, and stay madly in love?
Let us build our lives on the true foundation of love: surrender, sacrifice, service.
Your gracious love keeps us strong yet soft — praising You instead in every place of pain.
Charity suffereth long, and is kind; charity envieth not; charity vaunteth not itself, is not puffed up. (1 Corinthians 13:4)
Lord, help me remember:
That marriage is a mystery of two strands woven into one.
But this oneness is often times hard, and many times supernatural.
That for love to be rooted and robust it needs to be given, and many times gritty.
That love steady is one that keeps showing up even when we feel like shutting out…
And because You are our safe base, we can learn to trust each other, we too will keep each other secure.
Nevertheless, to avoid fornication, let every man have his own wife, and let every woman have her own husband. (1 Corinthians 7:2)
Lord, may You?, keep our eyes, heart and mind fixed on You so we are not wandering around and wondering within.
Help us remember that infidelity doesn’t just start and stop with the sharing of our bed, but the sharing of our deepest emotion, our most inner ambition, and our greatest desire, with a ‘romantic ideal’ — ‘whom we’d turn to, to fulfil your inner, inward, endless supply of needs’. (Esther Perel)
And these endless supply of innard needs? They are wrapped within us and a part of us, making us often believe that love that thrills is love that fills.
That any moment we start thinking elsewhere, else’s life, else’s satisfaction — we are toying with recreating a romantic ideal whom we think will recreate us somehow, and this won’t fulfill us.
That only when we turn to You — the One who knows us and fills and fulfills us — can we live full and overflowing.
And we can live so satisfied in Him that we are most satisfied with life, and with each other.
It was but a little that I passed from them, but I found him whom my soul liveth; I held him and would not let him go. (Song of Solomon 3:4)
Lord — let me see past my daily annoyance, past the things I would rather do in my own way, at my own pace.
Help me cup the face of my beloved, the one whom You’ve given me, to love and behold. And as You hold on to us, You are changing us, You’re growing us.
Hatred stirrers up strifes; but love covereth all sin. (Proverbs 10:12)
Lord, there must be a way to fight fair.
A way to grow closer through our differences, to connect when anger disconnects, to deepen in maturity right there in the midst of the greatest emotional difficulty.
Help us to conform to Christlikeness, and help us to apply it to others liberally, lavishly.
Submitting yourselves one to another in the fear of God. Ephesians 5:21)
Lord, would You hold us when we feel like lashing out, when our love leaks dry, and our anger runs wild. Help us to submit to You, so we can surrender our rights and serve our spouse. In doing that help us communicate better, love stronger, fight constructively, argue non-combatively, and grow abundantly.
Be ye not unequally yoked together with unbelievers; for what fellowship hath righteousness with unrighteousness? and what communion hath light with darkness? (2 Corinthians 6:14)
Lord, can a man carry fire in his bosom and not be burned? We know that every relationship will either make us, or break us. So help me Lord to choose holiness over happiness, and to know for sure, so I can find Your will.
Help us not to fall in love with the face of a man more than the calibre of his heart.
You love our weak coming, our feeble leaning, our humble listening, and Your desire is to guide us into all truth.