Tag Archives: relationships

6 Minutes a Day that Will Change Your Marriage!

It’s blessing time! Two years ago we decided to have our second
cup of coffee and our (at least) 6 minute prayer time at 10:00 AM.

It was a good decision!

It came as a result of doing a Covenant Marriage course put out
by Family Foundations International. As we went through the
study, we decided we needed a more productive prayer time; one
in which we blessed each other instead of just interceding
together on behalf of others.

We analyzed our schedule and decided that bedtime was not a
good time for us. Too often we dropped off to sleep before our
prayer was finished. So although we had prayed together almost
every single night for 40 years, we decided to make a change.

So coffee time at around 10 AM became our time to bless each
other and pray together. It’s not always right at 10 and some
days it doesn’t get done at all but it has now become habit.

Our grandson usually arrives at about that time, too, since I
am his homeschool teacher. He inevitably storms through the
door asking, “Have I missed the blessing?” And usually he
manages to get his blessing first. That means a lot to us and
to him. He plunks himself down on the couch between us and his
grandfather blesses him.

Then it’s our turn. Let me say that this particular format for the
“6 minute prayer” is not original with us. We heard it first from a
couple who modeled it at a conference we were attending. I’m not sure
where it originally came from but this is how we do it.

1. Ask forgiveness. Always starting with the husband, he asks 
forgiveness for anything he perceives he has done to offend his 
wife. (But that doesn’t necessarily mean you need to wait until 
then to do this.)

2. Express thanks. Thank God for qualities you see in your 
spouse’s life. It’s a challenge to come up with “new” insights 
for this but we have fun with it. 

3. Give a blessing. Bless your spouse by agreeing with God’s 
word and what it says about them and who they are in Christ as 
well as the resources available to them through the power of 
the Holy Spirit.

After the husband finishes, then it’s the wife’s turn.

This process doesn’t take very long and we usually tack on some
intercession for people we know or situations we are aware of
that need God’s intervention, healing or resolution from the Lord.

That’s it, folks. This gave our marriage a whole new
perspective and “new life” when we started doing it. We
recommend it to everyone.

We had always heard the concept of “keeping short accounts” and
this is a very practical way to accomplish that. In other
words, don’t let situations or perceived hurts fester. Ask
forgiveness right away. When you do this daily, you’ll be
amazed at how freeing it is.

Your time doesn’t have to be the same as ours. Just find
a time that works for you. It’s only 6 minutes!

You can find out more about the ministry of Family Foundations
International here.

by Sharon Reece

P.S. If you would like to work with me on a project that will
help you be successful in any type of business, check out this
link.

Keys to a Long and Satisfying Marriage

My husband and I celebrated our 41st wedding anniversary in October 2013. It seems as though the years have flown by and each year has added a deeper dimension to our relationship. So I thought I would share some of the keys (best practices and principles) for a successful marriage. These keys work for any relationship and I plan to expand on some of them in future posts. I don’t claim that this is an exhaustive list by any means, but there are principles and ideas that will provide you with wisdom in any relationship. More wisdom keys can be found in the Bible. Anyone who studies it diligently will find much more than I can possibly share here.

And it’s important to say that even though we know these keys and principles, we don’t necessarily always follow them. We’re still a work in progress just like everyone else. I hope that encourages you as you read through these.

So here is our list:

30 Keys to a Long and Satisfying Marriage
  1. Put God first – worship Him together
  2. Take time every day for the 6 minute prayer*
  3. Be quick to ask forgiveness
  4. Be quick to forgive (seventy times seven)
  5. Put the other’s interests above your own
  6. Be a servant spouse
  7. Be available
  8. Do not use sex as a weapon against your partner
  9. Spend time together – enjoying shared interests
  10. Have fun together!
  11. Desire the best for your partner even at your own expense
  12. Cultivate gratefulness toward your spouse (not taking them for granted)
  13. Let your spouse have the last word (let him/her think he/she’s right even when he/she isn’t)
  14. Don’t embarrass him/her in public or in front of your children
  15. Laugh with him/her, not at him/her
  16. Thank God for how He has used your spouse in your life
  17. Avoid the words, “always” and “never”
  18. Keep each others secrets
  19. Don’t keep secrets from each other
  20. Understand the difference between relational and topical communication*
  21. Do unto your spouse as you would have them do unto you (even if they don’t do the same)
  22. Make him/her feel important
  23. Be a good listener
  24. Swallow your pride and be the first one to say you’re sorry
  25. Edify him/her in front of everyone
  26. Make him/her believe they can do anything
  27. Trust God to change both you and your spouse because you can’t
  28. Be your spouse’s best cheerleader and supporter
  29. Take your marriage vows seriously – a covenant is serious
  30. Make sure that divorce is not part of your thinking or your vocabulary

In this day and age when anything goes and most people go by what “feels good” to them, it’s more important than ever to base our actions and decisions on solid principles that have stood the test of time. It’s my hope that as you read through these, you will realize that without the help of a personal God and Savior to help you, you will fail. But He is alive and well and able to meet you wherever you are and to help you no matter what your current circumstances may be.

My prayer is that you will experience a lifetime of loving that is more satisfying than you could ever imagine.
Don’t forget to add your comments. I welcome any suggestions, comments or questions.
Sharon Reece
214 701-8298
P.S. For books that can help you with your relationship, check out the Family Foundations bookstore.
P.P.S. If you would like to work with me on a project that will help you be successful in any type of business, check out this link.
*I’ll explain the 6 minute prayer and the difference between topical and relational communication in future posts.
Re-edited from my blog on Good Solutions for Health, Wealth and Wisdom, by Sharon Reece

How To Keep The Fire Burning After Years Of Marriage

Marriage is a long road that definitely has its ups and downs. A common issue in most marriages after many years is a loss of “spark.” The following are ways to keep your marriage strong for all the years that you and your partner are together:

Date Night
Making time for one another in a relationship, especially a marriage, is incredibly important. Everyday life is busy, as everyone knows. It can be difficult to make time for things, even when they’re things you want to do. The same is true when trying to make time for your partner. A good way to make time for one another is to plan an ongoing weekly date night. This can be anything that the two of you enjoy doing together. It can be the typical dinner and a movie date, or it can be something that is specific to your relationship and your hobbies. Whatever it is that you and your partner decide to do, the important thing is that you do it together. Spending this time is a great way to rekindle your love life.

Affection
In order to keep the love alive in your very special marriage, it is important that the affection still be present in the relationship. Even small forms of affection like a regular morning kiss or the addition of a little daily flirting will take your relationship to new heights. These small signs of love mean much more than the actual action itself. It means that the love is not gone. It means the attraction is not gone.

Kindness
To make your partner feel special, and therefore loved, it’s a good idea to participate in small acts of kindness that your partner will appreciate. It will make the person you love feel important to you. It will also show them that you care about their needs and desires. Feeling appreciated makes one feel closer to another person, and feeling closer to your partner is the first step toward keeping your love strong for as long as you are together.

Talk
It is important in a marriage to maintain active communication. This communication is not just limited to the big things in your and your partner’s lives. Knowing someone on a day-to-day level is important when truly trying to know a person. Not only will this daily conversation give you more insight into the life of your lover, but it will also make them feel as though you care about them in every aspect of their life.

Getaway
If the spark starts to subside, there are a multitude of ways to reignite, and some that can happen a little more quickly. One way to spark this fire quickly if you and your partner feel it starting to fade is a weekend away. This will give you one-on-one time with your partner to reconnect on a more intimate level. For many, a couple of days isn’t long enough to make any kind of impression, so if that’s the case, consider a long weekend or even a week somewhere secluded.

Featured images:

Vanessa Alvarez writes all about relationships. Her recent work is on the Top Online Counseling Degree Programs.