Framed copy of “Marriage Takes Three” poem by Perry Tanksley.
Love will keep us together. We will live happily every after. Nothing will separate us. We are soul mates.
These are phrases we hear couples who are about to get married say all the time. So how come over half of marriages end in divorce? Even Christian marriages fair no better.
Christians have a better than average chance at making marriage work. That is if they remember that marriage takes three. This means to let God be a part of their marriage.
There is a poem written by Perry Tanksley titled “Marriage Takes Three,” that says it all. A framed copy was given to us as a gift when we were married. It states:
I once thought marriage took
Just two to make a go.
But now I am convinced
It takes the Lord also.
And not one marriage fails
Where Christ is asked to enter.
As lovers come together
With Jesus at the center.
But marriage seldom thrives
And homes are incomplete
Till He is welcomed there
To help avert defeat.
In homes where Christ is first
It's obvious to see,
Those unions really work,
For marriage still takes Three.
Also, if we remember to love our spouse as God loves us things would go a lot smoother. We would never be too old to hold hands and would never go to sleep angry. When things get tough we would stand firm and face the world together with God’s help.
Our circle of love would include our whole family. We would remember to speak words of appreciation and demonstrate gratitude in thoughtful ways. Best of all we would have the capacity to forgive and forget.
The question would not be did we marry the right person. It would be are we being the right partner.
In the business of life we forget to share our marriage with God. Asking for his guidance and help is a key part of having a strong marriage. There is a simple way to pray together. It includes just two steps and takes longer to explain than to do.
The first thing is to thank God for one thing that you value in your spouse. Some examples are: that they are a good cook, good provider, good with the children or even that they have forgiven you something.
Second ask God for something for your spouse. Examples of this are: to help them have a good day at work, for wisdom in dealing with coworkers, energy to keep up with the children or for good health.
Keeping prayer time with your spouse to these two things avoids many pitfalls. Some partners tend to preach to their spouse while praying. This is a big no no. It is God’s place to work on our spouse’s faults, not ours. Also, if we are listening to God, He will help us focus on and work on our own faults.
Our prayer as a couple to God is: thank you God for helping us through 28 plus years of marriage and please help us be a good example to others who want to have a great marriage.