Jump directly to the content
Building a Divorce-Proof Marriage

Building a Divorce-Proof Marriage

Tips from what we learned—the hard way
Average Rating:

The desire was understandable. The expectation was not. When I married my childhood sweetheart 23 years ago, my desire for a lifetime of wedded bliss was understandable; expecting my husband to make it happen was unrealistic.

Consequently, the first six years of our marriage were hell on earth. I literally wanted to kill him; my sweetheart had turned sour right before my very eyes. Molten days turned into smoldering nights—and not because we were igniting the fires of our passion for one another.

As life-sapping as it was however, we never considered divorce. In our eyes, divorce was not an option. We agreed before taking our vows that no matter what, divorce would not be mentioned.

We did eventually wear ourselves—and each other—down to the point that we knew we had to do something more to divorce-proof our marriage or we wouldn't have the fortitude to hold fast to our promise.

Because our marriage was so damaged, we sought Christian counseling. If our home had been destroyed by a tornado, we would have sought help from a professional; we knew our marriage had suffered no less damage than if an F5 had ripped through it.

My husband and I learned the hard way that marriage is not a one-time "I do" and then living happily ever after. Marriage takes work and involves daily choices.

We live in a day when commitments are taken lightly, when divorce can take place with a John Hancock. Sign your name; go your own way. The marriage covenant isn't taken as seriously as it once was.

But it should be.

Since God is the one who instituted the marriage relationship, it makes sense that he is the one who holds the keys to a lasting marriage. God has put forth spiritual laws for us, which lead to good or bad results, depending on the choices we make.

The following are some choices my husband and I made that turned our marriage around. These choices can do the same for you. And if you consider your marriage already to be good, these choices can make it even better.

Choose to make peace. The battle has to end sometime; it might as well be today. Making peace requires humility—a virtue we don't easily embrace. But those who enjoy a happy marriage realize that humility takes precedence.

It's hard for me to admit when I'm wrong, so this is still a difficult choice for me to make at times. But I've learned that if I am wrong, it's best to genuinely admit it, apologize if necessary, and then move on. Peace enters the relationship when one person humbles himself or herself to restore balance.

No First PageNo Previous PagePage 1 of 3Next PageLast Page

Sign up for TCW's free Marriage Partnership e-newsletter for weekly updates and encouragement through the joys, trials, and tribulations of marriage.

not a subscriber?

Subscribe for only $9.95 yearly!
Start here for complete access to Today's Christian Woman—a mentor to help you love God more deeply and live fearlessly.

Next Steps

Downloadable resources to go deeper

Growing Faith in Your Growing Teen

Your key role in nurturing your child's spiritual development

Marriage in the Midst of Ministry

If you are involved in ministry, this download offers balance, perspective, and practical ideas for your marriage.

ratings & comments

Average User Rating:

Displaying 1–3 of 8 comments

Selina M. Almodovar

August 18, 2014  11:52am

This was a great read! I can agree with each of these points. As a wife for a little over a year now, I was terrified of divorce and before even saying "I do" we sought a TON of counseling, marriage books, seminars, classes, and other resources that would help us prepare for marriage. Every one of them pointed out the points you stated in this article! The hardest part of marriage is not just "putting God first" but "keeping God first". Once you decide to do that on a daily basis, then you are also agreeing to "serve", "forgive", "extend grace", "sacrifice", "patience", etc. It's a lot, but oh, so worth it! Congrats on your 23 years of marriage!

Report Abuse


February 04, 2013  6:06am

Great article. The marriage institution is under siege today. we need to pray more for our families and our friends. The todays christian woman needs a lot of teachings on how to live as a wife after God's own heart and still stand the hardships of a troubled marriage. Most men and leaving their responsibilities to women and most homes now are being taken care of by women. The roles have changed and yet men are supposed to be heads. What can women do? God help us.

Report Abuse


January 28, 2013  4:24am

The Marriage School Are you married? Even if you are not....lessons for the future.. if Yes ....Welcome to the school called marriage, A school where you will never graduate A school without a break or a free period A school where no one is allowed to drop out, A school which you will have to attend every day of your life, A school where there is no sick leave or holidays. A school founded by God, 1. on the foundation of love, 2. The walls are made out of trust, 3. The door made out of acceptance, 4. The windows made out understanding 5. The furniture made out of blessings 6. The roof made outof faith Before you forget, you are just a student not the principal, God is the principal Even in times of storms, don't be unwise and run outside, remember this school is the safest place to be. Never go to sleep before completing your assignments for the day Never forget the C-word, Communicate, communicate to your classmate and also communicate to the Principal If you find out something in your classmate that you do not appreciate. Remember your classmate is also just a student not a graduate, God is not finished with her/him yet.So take it as a challenge and work on it together. Do not forget to study, never read your Bible (the main textbook), but study it Start each day with a sacred assembly and end it the same way. Sometimes you will feel like not attending classes, yet you have to. When tempted to quit,find courage in the Lord to continue. Some tests and exams may be tough but remember the Principal knows how much you can bear. But still it is a school better than any other, It is one of the best schools on earth; joy, peace and happiness accompany each lessons of the day. Different subjects are offered in this school, yet love is the major subject, After all the years of theorizing about it, now you have a chance to practice it. To be loved is a good thing, but to love is a greatest privilege of them all Marriage is a place of love, so love your wife/husband, When tempted to raise your voice, let love hold your mouth Let love overthrow pride and selfishness and let it reign in your house Do not hold back any love from him/her. Don't meet him/her halfway but go all the way Love as though that's your only hope for your survival, and it is

Report Abuse

Rate and comment on this article: *



1000 character limit

* Comments may be edited for tone and clarity.

More For Women
Gifted for Leadership

gifted for leadership

The Leadership Journal blog inspires and connects women leaders in church ministry
Her Meneutics


The Christianity Today  women's site provides news and analysis for evangelical women