You might have noticed that last week I left out prayer when I listed the ways Doug and I are intentionally growing together.
Gasp! The preacher’s wife didn’t make prayer the number one growth activity!
You’re right. I didn’t. And there is a reason for that. Prayer in marriage is not about spiritual growth. It is about life. It is as critical as breathing. A marriage can survive without a couple choosing to spiritually grow together. Without prayer, however, there is no life.
So, how can you establish a solid prayer life as a couple? Here are a few tips.
Establish a joint prayer time.
I will be honest – Doug and I do not always do this (although we do continuously maintain a daily family prayer time). But, we both prefer it when we have this habit established. We come back to it on a regular basis, one or the other of us giving the nudge that it’s time to restore the habit.
This joint time can take several forms.
- It can be a weekly opportunity to share prayer needs, allowing an extended time of prayer and sharing.
- It can be a shorter, daily time, starting off with the question, “How can I pray for you today?”
- It can simply focus on prayers for the marriage and family.
- It can branch out, focusing on prayer needs that burden both of your hearts.
Share a prayer list.
Sometimes schedules prevent a couple from being able to sit down, undistracted, for joint prayer. But, that does preclude togetherness in prayer. The togetherness simply occurs at different times or in different places.
The key is a joint prayer list. A couple can share requests for the coming week, share a prayer notebook or journal, or post joint requests on a whiteboard placed in an accessible location. For a while, Doug and I had a prayer whiteboard hung in our closet, a location both of us accessed regularly but our children did not, making it a perfect place to share prayer thoughts.
Don’t forget the praise and thanksgiving.
Sometimes joint prayer is simply a matter of joint worship. Praise music and verbalizing thanksgiving together can greatly strengthen a couple’s ability to pray together. In fact, this might be a great place to start for those who are not yet comfortable with a joint prayer time. Listing thanksgivings and acknowledging how God is revealing Himself in the marriage beautifully brings a couple into the presence of God.
Whatever the approach, the key is unity. Seek God’s will and wisdom together. Know what your spouse is taking before the throne of God. Let your spouse know what you are taking before the throne of God. You might find your relationship grows immediately simply because you discover you have been praying for the things. Coming together in prayer joins both hearts and resolves.
Will you commit to making this year a year of prayer with your spouse?