There are a lot of great things to talk about with your spouse. It’s always good to know how they feel about certain things, like how to parent your kids, how to run the house and decide whose job is whose when it comes to the details of all the tasks and responsibilities. And, let’s not forget money and spending, that’s a necessary conversation too, isn’t it?
But the truth is, none of those things will amount to a whole lot if you fail to have this one conversation—the conversation that asks, “What are we going to do when times get hard?” That’s the one that matters.
In scripture, we are told—well really, we’re commanded, by God to be strong and courageous. We’re told not to fear or be discouraged when life gets hard because He will be with us wherever we go (Joshua 1:9). What that means for our marriage is that no matter what we face, God is facing it with us too. He is not leaving us alone in our battles so why in the world would we give up?
As we journey in marriage together it sometimes gets difficult. Each you and your spouse are human, which means your feelings are fickle, your body gets tired, you handle things poorly, and you make bad decisions out of your own selfish desires. But there’s good news in that. When you each mess up, which (spoiler alert), you will, it’s ok. You can keep forging on because we have a God who is not finished with us. The spouse you are married to and the spouse they are married to is not finished yet. God tells us in Philippians 1:6 that He has only started the work in us, and as long as we are here on this earth, He is still in the process of completing us.
As we keep getting back up every time life knocks us down or our spouse seems to be pushing us down, there’s one thing we can count on—if we keep on fighting and we don’t become weary at doing good, at the right time the harvest will be reaped (Galatians 6:9).
It is so hard to not throw in the towel in marriage. There are days that are great and there are days that challenge you to your core. This is why it’s so important to have the conversation and decide in advance—what are we going to do when our marriage gets hard?
When this question is answered, it is a declaration that you are on the same team and that any battle fought will be an us and God, against whatever the challenge of any given day is. When you know that you have a no quitting policy in place, you can move forward safely, in trust, and together. Fight to overcome the real enemy, which by the way, will never be each other—it can’t be, because the enemy is not flesh and blood (see Ephesians 6:12). Your real enemy is the darkness of this world and Satan himself.
Is it time for you to sit down with your spouse, cast away your fears of being left, and choose together that you’re all in? Be prepared to finish the race, reap the rewards from not quitting, and give God all the glory through your marriage. He deserves that, and you know what, with that kind of effort, so do you!
If you are finding yourself in a difficult place right now and need a good conversation starter, download our It’s Time to Talk printable for some great questions to help each other during stress.