Questions and Practices for Your Marriage Relationship
By: Michael Fuchs
Here are 5 Questions that should be asked every day. These questions could be part of couples daily alone time together, or could be at the dinner table.
Take turns asking and answering these questions with each other. Remember to apply: love, respect and good listening skills. Use gentleness, grace and mercy when replying to your spouse statements and questions. It would be good to pray together first, (read Gal 5:22-23).
22 … the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, forbearance, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, 23 gentleness and self-control. (Gal 5:22-23 NIV)
This is a time to build a stronger relational foundation. As you can see in verse above, we need to start with “Love and end with Gentleness and Self-control”.
Questions to ask Your Spouse
- “What is it you have done today that you would like to be acknowledged for?” This question helps our spouse feel appreciated. It also helps us recognize and support our spouse. It is a great way to build self-esteem and oneness in our marriage.
- “What are you grateful for today?” This question has a profound effect on your mental well-being. This will improve your energy level and your self-esteem. When a person shows appreciation and gratitude they will find an increase of good things will come their way.
- “What act of kindness did you see or perform today?” By asking this question couples will improve their positive view on life. They will help each other see more goodness and kindness in life. This will also help them to apply goodness, gentleness and kindness to their marriage relationship. This is a discipline of self-control.
- “What was great about today? This allows your spouse to express their inner feels. They are able to talk about things that excite them in a safe place, without being judging. This will build intimacy and closeness in the marriage relationship.
- “What unresolved issues do we need to talk about.” This will open up the discussion to unresolved issues in safe environment. It will reinforce open communication, transparency, and candor. It will stifle resentment from building up over time. It creates a safe space for couples to talk issues in a safe, loving, gentle place to try to achieve an understanding. This does not have to be a place of agreement, but we should strive for better understanding.
This daily exercise takes practice and patients to achieve the best results of closeness and intimacy. We recommend that you apply the following principles to help you achieve the greatest results.
Watching Your P’s
- Prayer – Praying together before you start asking these questions is vital to achieving the best results. Ask God to help you with love, joy, peace, forbearance, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control during this time. Remember that you are responsible for your actions and re-actions. You are not responsible for your spouse’s actions and re-actions. By interacting with love, gentleness, kindness and self-control you will have better chance of having greater results.
- Practice – Even when you don’t feel like doing this … do it. Even if your spouse is not being very nice … be nice. Even if you don’t feel like being nice … be nice. Practice will get greater results in shorter period of time. An oak tree does not become 20 foot tall over night. It takes a time for an oak tree to become a ‘Mighty Oak’. Over time this practice will become a solid foundation foryour marriage relationship.
- Patients – This may take some time to get it right and to achieve great results. Be Patient. It may take your spouse longer to get it right than it take you … be patient. It may take you longer to get it right than it takes your spouse … be patient. Don’t give up on each other. Continue to support and encourage each other, even when we get it wrong … be patient.
- Persistence – The goal is to achieve a better marriage relationship. Persistence is what will get us there. It is not about how fast we achieve great results, but that we commit ourselves to do whatever it takes to get results. Sometimes it takes help. Be willing to ask for assistance from a marriage coach, or marriage councilor.
- Perspective – Seek to understand. Sometimes we need to look at things in different perspective. Just because you look at something in a different perspective does not mean that you agree with that perspective. However, sometimes seeing something in different perspective gives us a revelation and understanding. That will lead to insights, companion, empathy and ultimately a better resolve.
- Participation – You need to be involved, not just show up. It is necessary for you to be ‘All In’ to achieve great results. Sometimes it also requires change. Be willing to do your part even if it means being a little more flexible. Ask God for humility to allow the marriage relationship to have a higher priority over your own unbending desires. Be willing to grow into a better spouse, to achieve a better marriage relationship that benefits both spouses. Be willing to do your part.
This will help provide for better communication and a better marriage relationship. At first this might seem like a task or an exercise. After a while it will get easier and become a daily activity. Over time this will become a way of life. Eventually, you will find that these questions have become your normal daily conversation topics. Then you will have achieved a great marriage relationship, when it is not normal, for you and your spouse not to ask these questions. When we listen to each other and respond to each other with “Love and Gentleness and Self-control” naturally.