Recently, a sermon delivered at one of my engagements struck a chord. It focused on the keys to a successful marriage which brought into view the reality of marriage in simplicity and understanding. I’m sure they would be of interest to you! Here are the keys in my own words.
Become students of each other
It is paramount to be student of each other, to carefully understudy the specie you are living with. Know his or her peculiar needs, temperaments, mannerisms, deficiencies, likes, ideology etc, it takes a life time to really know someone, so getting to know your spouse is not a one off thing, it’s lifelong. As you age and grow together, your knowledge of one another needs updating. The bible admonishes men to dwell with their wives with understanding. That’s a challenge isn’t it? Well, let’s say it’s a source of hope and reassurance that regardless of how erratic the needs and temperaments of a woman may be, it’s possible to be the love doctor she cannot live without.
From research carried out, the top five needs of a man and a woman were identified. I suppose there are the needs that can be generalised because every person is unique and have distinctive needs. However, the needs listed below will definitely be a good starting point.
Top 5 needs of a woman
- The 3 As: Affection, Attention and Affirmation
- Honesty and openness
- Financial Support
- Family Commitment
Top 5 needs of a man
- Sexual fulfilment
- Recreational company
- Attractive spouse
- Domestic Support
- Admiration and Respect
I was quite surprised to see that sexual fulfilment did not make the top five needs of a woman! Guys would definitely agree that it indeed is the top need of a man. That goes to show how differently men and women are wired and the import of understudying the specie you have as your spouse.
The need to give equal significance to the needs of each other cannot be overemphasised. It would be defrauding and selfish is if you constantly pester your spouse for affection, attention and affirmation while you ignore his need for sexual fulfilment. The reverse also applies, don’t expect your spouse to be your glory by being well dressed and attractive while you do not spend time with her and engage in positive conversation.
The importance of communication was stressed pari persu with the need to cultivate an atmosphere of security and free communication. The temperament of the individual has a role to play in the manner in which he or she communicates. Communication can be verbal or non verbal. While emphasis is placed on the need to talk and have face to face conversations as often as possible, other medium of communication for instance email, text messages, letter writing should not be undermined of regarded as less important.
It does however take time to develop an atmosphere of free communication when there is absolute trust and desire to confide in your spouse is not inhibited. Trust is built over time, through trials and test – "Naked and Unashamed"
Commitment to change
Both parties should have the desire to commit to change. To die to self and adapt in order to become the best spouse he or she can ever be. It is important to stress that you cannot change your spouse but you can change your attitudes, modify your character and develop different responses when situation demands. As once said, it is a sad calling to try to change your spouse.
Have fun together
A merry heart is good medicine. Find time to laugh, play and let the kid in you loose. Even in desperate situations, try to find the a reason to laugh through it while you exercise your faith to overcome the situation. Definitely life would throw punches at you and we know that our adversary the devil seeks who to devour. But remember that we have overcome through Christ Jesus who strengthens us.