These days when it comes to marriage and relationships it seems as though anything goes. But society’s general permissiveness doesn’t necessarily mean that the quality of our relationships is improving. Just a fleeting glance at the current divorce rates, not to mention the rates of depression and suicide among married couples confirms that something is very wrong with our relationships in general. Meaningful and successful marriages take time and effort, and the sacrifice is more than worth the rewards.
The objective data shows that marriages between two Christians have a lower chance of divorce than marriages where partners have different religions or no religion at all. This makes sense if you think about it. Couples that share not only interests but religions are more likely to stay together for the long haul. Additionally, making sure that both partners share the same basic values and life goals will make the whole relationship much easier.
Divorce is an all too common problem in modern marriages. But the dire statistics need not cause you to despair. Successful marriages all have certain key components in common and these can be easily replicated in any marriage:
– Physical Attraction
Friendship is actually one of the most important factors in a successful long-term relationship. Couples that are best friends are much more likely to succeed as a couple. Over time as both age this becomes even more important.
Trust is of course absolutely essential in a successful marriage. Couples that don’t trust each other will quickly see their relationship deteriorate into fights and separation. Trust is built over time through consistent actions and reliability. Trust isn’t to be abused and it can so easily be lost with just one small action.
Love and physical attraction are distinct from each other and both are necessary in a successful marriage. Love is sacrifice, and everybody has a different love language. For some people, it’s words of affection. For others, it involves gifts and random acts of kindness. For others it needs physical signs of love including touch. Understanding a partner’s love language is crucial to keep that person happy and feeling as though he or she is valued and appreciated.
Communication is where most couples, in fact most relationships, struggle. A lack of effective communication is the cause of most relationship problems. Everyone communicates differently. Some people want to share intimate details of every day while others are not comfortable with this. These differences in communication styles can cause significant strain on relationships. Both partners need to know what the other needs and wants and work around these issues. Partners who communicate deeply with each other have higher quality relationships than partners who don’t.
Understanding is often difficult. People think they know and understand each other but come to discover that they don’t. Understanding goes beyond just knowing what someone likes to eat or their favorite pet. Partners must understand what they need from each other in order to feel valued and loved. This can take time and it can be difficult for some people to be this open about themselves, but it will be more than worth it in the long run.
All relationships take time and effort, but making a successful marriage is possibly the hardest of all. By working each day on improving the quality of relations between partners a marriage can last a lifetime.