I get the idea from listening to some couples that they really believe that a good marriage “just happens.” Say your vows, go on a honeymoon, and then “poof!”, out comes this fruitful marriage without any work or effort at all. According to Scripture, nothing could be further from the truth. Yes, The Lord must build the house or we labor in vain (Psalm 127:1); but, He has chosen to use the combined efforts of a husband and wife (Ecclesiates 4:9-12), yielded to The Holy Spirit, to bring that good marriage to pass.

Dr Tim Keller likened marriage to a garden. That is a great illustration. However, when you or I think of a great garden, do we really believe that it just happens? Of course not! A great garden requires a lot of attention, and so does our marriage. I said a couple of weeks ago that marriage is like banking. How so? Can we make a withdrawal from a savings account if we have not made any deposits? No. Marriage can also be likened to farming. How? We reap what we sow.

Today, I want us to look at some of the practical ingredients that are necessary to build a good marriage. It is understood of course that the foundation of each of our marriages is The Lord Jesus Christ. He is the Cornerstone of the Church (Ephesians 2:20; 1 Peter 2:6), and He must be the cornerstone of our hearts and homes. Our supreme desire as husbands and wives should be to please Him and do those things that are pleasing in His sight (Colossians 1:10; 1 John 3:22).

We are all aware of our human frailties and weaknesses of our flesh. Thank God that we can seek The Lord and His strength (Psalm 105:4). Thank God that because of His marvelous grace, His strength is made perfect in our weaknesses (2 Corinthians 12:9,10).

Another thing to keep in mind is that every one of our marriages is a work in progress; it is constantly being “tweeked” by God’s Spirit through all of the changes and challenges that He places in our paths. Draw near to God, saints, “and He will draw near to you.” (James 4:8) Read The Word together, pray together. Look to God for the present help you need (Psalm 46:1: Hebrews 4:14-16). And remember, let’s do this together for the glory of God!