We are convinced that every married person should proactively strengthen their spouse. There are all kinds of situations and issues that assault us and bring us down, aren’t there? For example…
- The sheer pace of life with children, sports, work responsibilities, church activities, the pull of friends, household chores (it’s tiring to just see the list!), can wear us down like waves beating on the shore. There are times when we are simply exhausted from the dailiness of life.
- Some men and women struggle with insecurity for various known and unknown reasons. But it’s very real and can affect how they see themselves in marriage and life in general.
- Even married spouses can be affected by loneliness. Not because you aren’t there for them, but because they long for a same-gender friendship(s) that is lacking in life.
- Fear affects men and women in different ways, but can be very present in marriage. It can keep your spouse from facing life with peace and confidence.
- Failure is an incredibly vulnerable experience for a husband or wife to experience in marriage. It could be failure at work, as a parent, financially, morally—a myriad of ways that we can miss the mark.
During good times we can shore up our spouse and strengthen them. And when they ache in their body and soul we are empowered by God to strengthen them as well.
In the book of 1 Samuel beginning in chapter 17, the account is given of David, the giant-killing shepherd and one-day king—and his closest friend, Jonathan, who was King Saul’s son. You can read the account for yourself, but over time David went in and out of King Saul’s favor. Eventually, Saul wanted David killed, so David went on the run into the desert with a handful of men. Bible scholars estimate that David was running an in hiding for six to eight YEARS!
David was probably exhausted, fearful, insecure, upset at being unjustly treated, and lonely. At some point in his flight from King Saul, David’s dear friend, Jonathan, seeks him out and finds him in the desert.
The Bible describes their meeting this way: “And Saul’s son Jonathan went to David…and helped him find strength in God.” (1 Samuel 23:16). We don’t know what Jonathan said to David, but we know what he must have done. He reminded him of God’s promises. He reminded David of God’s greatness. He reminded him of God’s purposes in his life.
Here’s a thought:
What if every husband and wife was attentive to their spouse’s needs to strengthen them? What would happen to marriages today if each of us took the initiative to help our spouse find strength in God? Don’t you believe that would radically change the tone of our marriages if we injected them with hope and confidence in God?
Starting today, ask God to show you how you can strengthen your spouse in Him. Here are a few ideas to consider:
- Search for verses and promises in the Bible that directly apply to what they are facing
- Ask your spouse if you can pray for them. Hold them or place a hand on their shoulder as you pray
- Remind your spouse of how God has worked and provided through your marriage—be specific
- Remind your spouse of how God has worked and provided through the pages of the Bible—be specific
- Tell your spouse how much Jesus loves and cares for them. You might read Matthew 6:25-34 together
- Remind them of God’s presence as you go through the valley (Psalm 23)
Let your spouse know that you are in this together, as you build your marriage!