Healthy couples worship together.
Here are 2 questions to think about: What is worship? Can church attendance make relationships healthier? Those are 2 very different questions. The 1st question refers to worship and the 2nd deals with church attendance. Christian worship is both a personal and corporate experience. In the Bible and throughout history, groups of like-minded worshipers set aside a day, time, place, and style of worship to God. Today, while the day, time, and place are fairly consistent, Christian churches vary greatly in style. However, those distinctions are part of what makes active worshipers feel encouraged and comforted.
Healthy couples worship together actively
Active worship is intended to affect all of a person’s senses and imagination. For instance, the Psalmist invites us all to “Taste and see that the Lord is good;” (Psalm 34:8). Likewise, in Chapter 27 verse 4, King David wants to “Behold the beauty of the Lord, and to enquire in His temple.” Welcome to the series “7 Steps To A Healthy Marriage.” I’ve included links to the other articles in the series at the end of this one.
Healthy couples worship together scripturally
“1 That which was from the beginning, which we have heard, which we have seen with our eyes, which we have looked upon, and our hands have handled, of the Word of life; 2 (For the life was manifested, and we have seen it, and bear witness, and shew unto you that eternal life, which was with the Father, and was manifested unto us;) 3 That which we have seen and heard declare we unto you, that ye also may have fellowship with us: and truly our fellowship is with the Father, and with his Son Jesus Christ. 4 And these things write we unto you, that your joy may be full. 5 This then is the message which we have heard of him, and declare unto you, that God is light, and in him is no darkness at all.” I John 1:4-5
Healthy couples worship together as a priority
Does regular worship strengthen a marriage? What about church attendance? The sense of habit, obligation, and duty might not excite the senses quite as much, but that does not diminish its importance. A person can watch a television preacher but it feels very different when we go to church. The act of rising early, getting ready, and driving to church, identifies regular church attendance as special. The familiar sensations upon entering the sanctuary create a sense of the sacred. The tradition of presenting your best self once a week does something special for the subconscious. It reminds us that God is approachable and that we can do better, be better, and make a difference in the world.
Healthy couples worship together under anointed men and women
For centuries, men have been the priests, preachers, and church leaders in most congregations. That is changing, however, and there has been quite a lot of attention to it. Just enter “Women preachers” in a Google search and you will receive over 19,000,000 hits. It’s about time. After all, “Women are the backbone of U.S. Christian churches. They are more likely than men to comprise the ranks of churchgoers, volunteers, and Sunday school teachers.”
Healthy couples worship together even if 1 of them cannot attend
This quote is taken from an Aug 13, 2012, Barna Research article called “Christian Women Today, Part 1 of 4: What Women Think of Faith, Leadership and Their Role in the Church.” Another article, this one from The Atlantic is called “It’s the Moms Who Get Kids to Church – A new study suggests women are the primary models for religious faith in Many Households” (Green, October 26, 2016). Ms. Green cites a Pew Research study that “suggests mothers have more influence on their children’s religious upbringings than fathers, especially in interfaith households.”
Healthy couples worship together sincerely
When asking the question “Does regular worship strengthen a marriage?” we must keep in mind that worship is also an individual experience. Some people worship silently, bowing their heads, closing their eyes, and barely moving their lips during prayer. Others might lift their hands, dance, speak in tongues, or laugh with joy. Who is to say that 1 is more sincere than the other? We simply cannot. In I Samuel 16:7, God told Samuel when choosing the person who would succeed Saul as King of Israel, “Man looks at the outward appearance, but the Lord looks at the heart” (KJV).
Healthy couples worship together regularly
While the style of worship may vary, Jesus said, “But the hour is coming, and now is, when the true worshipers will worship the Father in spirit and truth; for the Father is seeking such to worship Him,” (John 4:23 NKJV). Church attendance for its own sake might help the church organization or a person’s social status, but, by itself, may do little from a spiritual standpoint. However, both are helpful to a marriage. The consistency of attendance and participation yields benefits to married couples.
Healthy couples worship together and grow
The National Institute of Health’s National Library of Medicine features an abstract titled “The Benefits from Marriage and Religion in the United States: A Comparative Analysis” (Waite, Lehrer, 2009). While the scope of the analysis is quite broad, the author’s findings are clear; “Our comparative analysis of religion and marriage in the United States reveals remarkable similarities in the benefits that are associated with these two social institutions, and also in the pathways through which they operate. Being married and being involved in religious activities are generally associated with positive effects in several areas, including physical and mental health, economic outcomes, and the process of raising children” (ibid).
“Those famous words from ‘The Lord’s Prayer’ are an admission of dependence.”
The Old Testament records stories of the patriarchs, prophets, priests, and people like us making altars to worship God. It might have been for thanksgiving or a memorial for future generations. It also might’ve been for petition and offering. In fact, the most fundamental and yet greatest act of human worship is bound up in the words “Give us this day our daily bread.” Those famous words from “The Lord’s Prayer” are an admission of dependence. That we humbly bow before our Creator and admit that we cannot go on without His blessing is to say the same thing as Paul the great apostle in Acts 17:28, when he quoted the Greek poets in scripture, “For in Him we live, and move, and have our being.”
Healthy couples worship together for future generations
So, does regular worship strengthen a marriage? Yes, it does. Whether it is private or corporate worship, a couple’s relationship is made stronger and healthier by honoring the Lord together. Raising children in church perpetuates that same dimension of faith in future generations. It is the single most important function for a couple to attend church, worship God, and take that faith into the world to help make it stronger and healthier as well. “One generation will commend your works to another.” Ps. 145:1 Click the links provided below if you would like to read the other articles in this series
- 7 Steps To A Healthy Marriage
- Couples Who Take Time To Talk Have Healthier Marriages
- Sharing Personal Secrets With Each Other Makes A Marriage Strong
- Working on Projects Together Strengthens a Marriage
- How To Stay In Love