Great Resources for Growing in Marriage

 To see the full blog of this beautiful wedding, click here!

To see the full blog of this beautiful wedding, click here!

The best marriage in the world is two servants in love. The worst marriage in the world is two masters in love.
-Jimmy Evans

A true marriage that lasts is not one that is carried along by feelings and chance. A lasting marriage takes dedicated passion, and intentional love. That means carving out time daily to find ways to improve and grow in your marriage.

My husband and I have been married now for two years, which for us, has been long enough to face the challenges life has to offer. We have quickly learned that marriage is hard work. But what we’ve also found is that it’s the best hard work we could ever do.

Marriage is precious and should be stewarded and guarded well. It’s not something that should be entered into with the intention of thinking of self.

 

So why is it important to prioritize making time to invest in your marriage?

 

Well, if you are hoping for a marriage filled with life long passion, there’s one reason. Whatever you invest your time into is where your passion will follow. So if all of your time is being given to your career, children, yourself, etc., one day you will wake up and realize there is no passion left in your marriage.

The time you take (or don’t take) to pour into your marriage will not only affect you. It will impact your entire family now and for generations. 

Another reason? We’re all broken and need healing.

Marriage is a healer. It is not here to make us happy. Happiness is simply a side affect of what happens when we seek to serve each other first. Living with one individual day in and day out, we are sure to hit each other’s triggers at some point. What isn’t realized most of the time is that these aren’t merely disagreements or hurts. They are often wounds that we have poorly bandaged ourselves, and the uncovering of them is necessary to true healing.

So as husband and wife, when we find ourselves in those moments of feeling hurt, or disagreement, it is actually a sacred opportunity to help salve each other’s wounds and bring greater intimacy to our marriage as a result.

So if you’ve come here with that desire to invest into your marriage, here are some amazing resources that have deeply impacted my marriage.

 

BOOKS

1.     The Five Love Languages

This book was given to my husband and I on our honeymoon by the sweet family that owned the cottages we stayed at. Learning the way both of us receive love has revolutionized the way we romance and communicate with each other on a daily basis. It is amazing how it is unique to each person, and it truly gives you the opportunity to love the person your spouse is even more by understanding them at a deeper level.

2.     The Blessed Marriage by Robert and Debbie Morris

This is a book we both read before getting married. Pastor Robert and Debbie Morris have a truly incredible story and marriage. There were so many vital things I took away from the wisdom they share that helped prepare my heart for marriage. Hope for a strong and lasting marriage is rekindled in this book.

3.     Saving Your Marriage Before It Starts by Les and Leslie Parrot

Here’s another one we both read before getting married. However, it is still an AMAZING book to read, no matter how long you have been married! The concrete steps given to help you communicate better and go deeper in your marriage are priceless. Our marriage has truly benefited in a great way from what we’ve learned through this book. 

 

Podcasts

1.     Marriage Today

Founded by Jimmy and Karen Evans is an amazing ministry called Marriage Today. This couple vulnerably shares the way God redeemed their marriage. Every book, podcast and conference by them that I have encountered has deeply encouraged my marriage. These podcasts are a great length to be able to play one a day to receive encouragement and wisdom for your marriage.

2.     Conversations with John & Lisa Bevere

While this podcast does not solely circle around marriage, John and Lisa share great insight on understanding God’s word through many of life’s issues as a husband and wife. Each episode gives reminders of who God is and what His Word says, and that always flows into marriage.

3.     My favorite Marriage Podcast Episodes

Each of these are my personal favorite podcast episodes on marriage. I highly recommend taking the time to download and listen to each of these!

a.     “Our Different Needs and Natures” by Marriage Today

Men and women are totally different. In marriage, we each have the unique privilege of meeting each other’s needs. This episode helps shed light on understanding and embracing our differences as husband and wife.

b.     “Foxy Mama” pt. 1 and 2 by Trim Healthy Mama (Ep. 29 & 32)

This is one to listen to without little ears around, but one you DEFINITELY need to listen to! First of all, these two sisters are hilarious and have such wisdom when it comes to health - physically, spiritually, and mentally. The biblical and scientific ground that they speak from about sex in these episodes is so pure, revelatory, and crucial to understand.

c.      “Special Valentine’s Day Episode: Marriage Makeover” by Conversations with John & Lisa Bevere

This one by John & Lisa is specific to marriage and a beautiful reminder of God’s redemptive power in marriage.

d.     “The Ripple Effect of Healthy Sexual Connection” ft. Francie Winslow by God Centered Mom

Holy moly, this episode was mind blowing to me! This episode is an incredible reminder of the beauty and power of sexual connection between a husband and wife.

e.     “Training your Mouth for Marriage” by Marriage Today

We all know our tongue is one of the hardest things to train. Which is why this is on my top list and something that is great to hear over and over again!

f.      “The Secret of Every Great Marriage” by Marriage Today

Well, if you’d like to find out what that secret is, I’d suggest going and listening to this. ;)

 

Classes & Conferences

I’ve heard it said that taking in your car for a routine oil change, or maintenance check is necessary to having a car that continues to run and operate as it's supposed to. I’ve found this to be true in marriage as well. It is not shameful or a failure to attend classes, conferences or counseling. It’s simply taking time to make sure your marriage has all it needs to continue running and operating the way it’s meant to.

Here are things that have been a tremendous influence on my marriage.

1.     XO Conference

This amazing weekend helps bring fresh vision and rekindle romance in your marriage. We make it a point to attend every year! Find more information on it here.

2.     Get in a Small Group

Marriage is not something that we can walk through alone. Having people who love, encourage and pray for us is the very thing that helps to carry us through life’s toughest struggles. It also makes those season of joy and celebration that much richer. Healthy, positive community is crucial in a healthy marriage

3.     Look for Marriage Nights at Your Church

If your church doesn’t offer marriage nights, look around at other local churches for a fun date night with your spouse that will also help grow your marriage.

4.     Have a Couple that can Speak Health and Love Into Your Marriage.

I have no idea where we would be in our marriage without the couples that have spoken into our lives and prayed us through some tough places. If you don’t have an older, godly couple that can speak into your marriage, start seeking the Lord together on this. You will be amazed at the impact.

5.     Kairos

This event is not a marriage one. However, KAIROS is a time for you to experience God—deeper and higher. It’s a time for inner healing and breaking strongholds, as well as physical, emotional, mental, and spiritual healing. We found that the more we allow God to bring healing to our lives, the greater healing and depth we experience in our marriage. For more information on KAIROS, click here.

 

Blogs

Since a lot of our time these days can be found spent on social media, why not add a little bit of marriage encouragement to our feed? I follow each of these bloggers and am always refreshed when I come across one of their posts. Check them out!

1.     Beating 50 Percent

2.     Unveiled Wife

3.     Fierce Marriage

4.     Dale Partridge

 

Whether your marriage is thriving, or you are finding yourself in a place desperate to revive the life that was once there, know that your marriage is worth fighting for. You have a 100% chance of success in marriage. God is the ultimate redeemer and He will never leave your side. Every single bit of investing into your marriage is worth it.

Marriage is hard work, but it’s the best hard work you will ever do.


We’d love to hear if any of these resources were an encouragement to you! For more resources in the future, be sure to sign up for our monthly newsletter!

Looking for a way to remember this season with just you and your spouse? I’d love to meet you and help capture your sweet love!