It's been a busy year at Grace Marriage. We've tried to challenge and encourage you and your marriage over the year on our blog. In this post, I'm highlighting the twenty most popular marriage posts based on pages viewed. Basically, you voted for these posts based on your views! Take a moment to review the posts and share your favorite one.
This was our most popular post of 2020! Wesley gets a prize! In this post, he asks us: Have you ever considered the fact that Jesus was the greatest question asker the world has ever seen? Think about that for a moment. And, while you're thinking, why would asking questions matter when it comes to your marriage? Read the post everybody liked—10 questions for couples to ask right now.
With the silver medal—Louise gives us at home date night ideas. Sounds, fun right? Well, we needed the help this year. Most couples are excellent at the romance piece while dating. It's fun to woo each other with romantic dates and enjoy conversations about the future. But, sadly, over time, things can tend to get stale. Read the full post for three at home date night ideas to keep the romance alive.
Why do people file for divorce? Well, it all depends on who you ask. In this post, Brad talks about the seven reasons for divorce that he's seen from his experience of ministering to couples over the years. No, we're not saying these were biblical reasons to divorce. But, they're the most common reasons. Find out how you can overcome them.
They thought: Will we be attracted to each other in person? Will conversation be as rich when we are face to face? Are there habits or baggage that are deal-breakers? Well, none of the fears came true and they fell deeply in love. What happened next? Well, if you missed it, find the full post for how to fix a marriage.
In this popular post, Brad tells the story of when his son was 4 years old and a friend was visiting their home. Their son gently grabbed her face and gave her a soft, slow kiss on the cheek. She froze for a minute and said, “Wow! He gives out that slow love.”
The truth is: Good love is slow. Another truth: We are in one fast, jacked-up, distracted, over-stimulated, and angry world. So, how do we live counter-culturally, and slowly enjoy Jesus and one another? Remind yourself to slow down with these 10 ideas for how to connect like never before.
Tim Hoak wrote this post for us about how, over the last 30 years, twice as many marriages of those over the age of 50 now wind up in shreds. Some of those couples had been married for 25+ years. And, just like that—it’s over. What happened? How could long-standing marriages suddenly come apart at the seams? Tim explains in what happens to marriage after kids.
Dan Darling wrote this post for us. He writes:
Eighteen years ago, a man waited by a church stage in Chicago as a beautiful young woman from Texas walked down the aisle. When you get married, you do it without knowing, fully, what is ahead. You know the other person, of course. You get wise input from friends and mentors and parents. You spend time together getting to know each other. But you don’t really know the person you are marrying. This is part of what makes marriage mysterious and wonderful if you are committed to it. It is mysterious in that you have no ideas what life with this other person will bring, what vistas are ahead, what sorrows and joys lay in your future.
I appreciate Dan writing this for us. Find the full post on how to fight for your marriage.
Have you lost that lovin’ feeling? It is easy to do when life seems to suck all our energy and time away. Being intentional in our marriage is not an easy feat. Louise Bettelli reminds us how important a date night is—that we need to set aside time for connection and romance in the midst of real life. Find 5 questions for your next date night.
Rob Pierce is hilarious. He wrote this post for us. He writes:
Early in our marriage, I caught the “Get out of Debt” bug. And, honestly, I wasn't great at knowing how to handle money arguments. I created spreadsheets, stuffed cash envelopes, and watched every dollar like a hawk. My wife came along as a very willing and gracious partner in this quest. However, once we crossed the finish line, my intensity didn’t decrease and I failed to let my foot off the gas. For obvious reasons, her patience grew thin and we began to have fights about spending.
Rob shows us where he went wrong and the mindset shift that proved helpful for him. Read more about how to handle money arguments in marriage.
Married couples will experience conflict. Most marital conflict is because of miscommunication, finances, or physical intimacy. And, let's face it—most of these conflicts are from miscommunication. This shouldn’t surprise us. But, we need to be prepared to handle conflict. If you’re like most folks, it’s common to feel out of control and unprepared. Nate Williams reminds us of 4 habits we should have for conflict resolution in marriage.
How do we manage life without feeling overwhelmed? How do avoid feeling like life is this huge responsibility to fulfill? How do avoid perpetual anxiety over all that needs to be done? How do we make relationship primary? Brad writes in this post about 5 things you're missing in managing marriage stress.
Marilyn Rhoads wrote this popular post. She writes:
I don’t know if you ever wake up like this, but today I woke up really sad. Last night, things went south at our house. Feelings were hurt, and it all began with sarcastic joking. Our kids started out joking, but then it went too far.
Marilyn writes with great transparency. If you missed this post, don't miss it any longer! Read her post about sarcasm in relationships and when it infects your home.
Brad writes: I hate uncertainty. With all that's going on in the world, how do you handle COVID without driving yourself—and others—crazy? Brad talks about how to handle covid without going crazy.
Scott Wigginton wrote this post. He says:
In our marriage of 34 years, hiking has become one of our favorite activities. Whether we’re hiking close to our home in Taylor County, Kentucky, or in one of America’s incredible national parks, Elizabeth and I have discovered our trials and delights are directly related to the trails we choose. Because there is a vast array of trails available to us, on a given day we will carefully choose what we want to experience. Whether you are an “empty nest” marriage like ours or still have children in your home, there are a number of meaningful and fascinating trails on which to embark.
Read Scott's seven (7) trails toward a better marriage.
Serving your spouse isn't always easy. Brad writes for this post:
I know. It can be tough. I have a friend. He's a great guy. He’d give you the shirt off his back. If something in your house broke, he’d be there in an hour and would fix it. He's always serving others well. But, sadly, he didn’t serve his spouse so well. He was so much more responsive to others than his own wife. His friends felt loved. His wife felt unloved. He is now divorced.
Read this full post on serving your spouse and the power of now.
We live in the most frantic and “connected” society the world has ever seen. The pace of life moves faster than most of us can adapt. We keep a continual pace of consumption when it comes to information and media in our lives. One large, negative aspect of this way of life is losing the ability to have the space to recognize the Lord’s work in someone else’s life. The Bible calls us to not only recognize it, but to act on it by affirming with words what we see. Find out what makes a good marriage.
The season is always right for a healthy marriage checkup. In this post, we offer couples a survey to help rate your marriage. If you missed it, read this post as this work is what ultimately helps create a healthy marriage.
These are some trying times we’re living in. No one could have predicted that we’d all be working remotely, wearing masks in public, cancelling vacations, “participating” in church services via our computers, keeping our distance from each other, and holing up in our homes for months on end. My guess is that all of this togetherness in our homes has intensified whatever the condition of your marriage was pre-virus. Read the full post about how to stay married during a pandemic.
Do you want to truly connect with your spouse? Best-selling author Gary Thomas writes:
I believe you must first learn to truly connect with God. Now, do you ever feel guilty because the traditional quiet time just doesn’t cut it for you? Are you increasingly frustrated by a “one size fits all spirituality” that does not fit you? Don’t despair. Scripture and the history of Christian tradition reveal a remarkable diversity of personal devotional styles.
In this post, Gary summarizes the nine (9) spiritual pathways as you seek to learn to love God according to the way He designed you.
Maybe your marriage doesn't quite need "saving". But, there’s a phrase that Dr. Phil coined—or at least popularized—that's a good one to ask ourselves now and then. Often, when he has a guest on his television show who’s telling him their dilemma and how they’ve tried to solve it without success, he raises his eyebrow, gives them a pointed stare, and says, “How’s that workin’ for ya?” That simple question usually causes those on the show to view their problem from another vantage point and seek new ways to solve it. Find out how to save your marriage in this post.
We hope you've enjoyed this year of blog posts. May God bless you and your marriage in 2021!
Ryan Sanders has been married to Tonia for 17 years and they have three children. Ryan is currently a doctoral student at The Southern Baptist Theological Seminary where he received the Master of Divinity. He is a Fellow at The Colson Center for Christian Worldview and serves as Lay Pastor at McLean Bible Church in Washington, DC.