Marriage is supposed to push us closer to Christ. We are to be “better together”. Spending time worshipping Christ together is a great way to do this!
Family Worship for Marriage
When my husband and I started our marriage, a time of family worship with just two of us seemed very daunting and we had no idea how to do it. We were asking questions like, should Bill preach a sermon to me every day? What should each of us contribute? How much time should this take? Everyone we talked to seemed to have a different perspective. Either they viewed their spirituality as entirely individual and did not do any more than a passing conversation now and then about what they were privately studying or they would sit and listen to mini-sermons from their husbands daily without any interaction. Both seemed like a wrong fit for us so we began the journey of figuring this out and we are still on it!
Here are some of things we have learned so far are important.
Three Tips for Time in Worship as a Couple
1. Make it consistent
Because we had no idea what we were doing regarding family worship in marriage, it took years to get into a groove. Without that, we were not consistent at all. We went through seasons of daily attempting and then seasons of only speaking in passing about our own reading.
Commit to make time together in family worship as a couple a priority. Don’t think it has to be the same thing every day. It doesn’t! You can make it lengthier when you have more time or shorten it when it you are exhausted but commit to spending time with Christ as a couple intentionally and daily.
For my husband and I the best time to do this is after our children go to bed. Our children are the definition of “early to bed, early to rise” at this point in their lives so if we want to have a quiet time together, it has to be after they go to sleep. This means that we have to view it as more important than relaxation or entertainment after a long day. This, honestly, can be hard but it is so worth it! I know other couples who are able to get up first in the morning and make that a consistent time. The point is not when you do it but that you do it.
2. Agree about how to do it
This is an important point because I believe that our husbands should be the spiritual leader in our households, however, that doesn’t mean that he will instinctively know what will minister most to his wife every day. Talk about that. Talk about your mutual and individual struggles, what you have found to be of spiritual blessing, and what you would like to try. Be willing to figure this out and don’t expect it to be perfect every day but be intentional and speak up.
3. Don’t let it replace time spent alone
Please do not let this be a replacement for your individual time in the Word! You need to be in the Word and in prayer on your own. You are a Christian and you should desire to spend time with your Savior. Family worship, whether it is with children (check out this post for more about that!) or as a couple, should never replace time your own time but should supplement it for the good of your soul and your family.
What it could look like:
This could mean that you work through a Bible reading plan slowly or maybe you read through the gospels, or an epistle. “Faith comes by hearing and hearing by the Word of God.” (Romans 10:17) so spend a few minutes at least washing your souls with the Word as Ephesians commands of husbands (Ephesians 5:26).
This could also mean going through a good devotional together. Most don’t take long to read but there are many available that are full of spiritual blessing. The list below are some great places to start!
2. Extended prayer together
This is my favorite time and it has been so important for our marriage. I feel like it knits my heart to my husband’s in such a special way. It allows me to hear his heart as he expresses it to God for our family, our church, our friends, our nation, and the nations. It is a joy to join our hearts together in this way.
Allow time for both spouses to pray. This doesn’t have to be eloquent, it should be real. Talk to God and seek His face together.
Other ideas for what you could include:
Discussion about personal devotions
My husband and I will usually do this throughout the day as opportunity arises but since we do our time in “couple worship” after our children go to bed we do sometimes catch up a little beforehand. It’s a blessing to hear what he has been learning in his own time and gain accountability for my own devotional life.
Giving prayer requests
Throughout the day my husband and I are in regular contact with A LOT of people but they aren’t the same people. He is a pastor so there are some things he cannot share with me and I don’t break confidences either but as much as possible we share what we can pray for friends and church members about. We also have a chance to share what we can pray for each other about or what we see in our children that needs prayer.
Discussion of good Christian books that you are reading
My husband and I both love to read so we may be at an unfair advantage here but I don’t think so. I have always loved to read but it wasn’t until my husband became a Christian and wanted to grow in his knowledge that his love for reading was rekindled. Some may have more desire to read than others but it is a good practice for anyone interested in learning about their faith. There is value in learning because God is all-knowing and He has created us to reflect His image in an appetite to know. Come back soon and we will have a case for reading up as well as a list of great resources to get you started.
This is something we talked about in our post on family devotions with children (check it out here). This is not something we do together in our time as a couple at this point but Christian music plays throughout the day in our home and we sing with our children during family worship. This is totally up to you! Scripture commands that we sing together (Ephesians 5:19) but whether you do this during your “couple time” is completely a matter of preference although I do see great benefit to it!
Worship as a Couple is Important
Family worship is vitally important! It is important for our children (more about that here!) and it is important for our marriages. It is critical that we spend our weeks in prayer and feasting on His Word. We are foolish to think that we can survive on Sunday sermons. God gives the family for several purposes but it is my sincere belief that chief among those reasons is so that we can push each other closer to Christ. We are to evangelize children in our home and then disciple them so that they can become our brothers and sisters in Christ and we are to love our spouses well by pushing them in holiness. What better way to do that than to worship together and to spend time in the presence of God in His Word and in prayer regularly for the good of our families, communities, and churches?
Do you do this kind of marriage devotion with your spouse regularly? If so, what do you do? What benefits have you seen? If not, how come? How we come alongside you in this journey? Let me know in the comments below!