Did you know that “couple prayer” is one of the most effective ways to strengthen your marital union? Whether you are struggling in your relationship, or just want to find new ways to grow in your intimacy, couple prayer is something you should consider exploring with your spouse. Something very humble and holy happens when a married couple join hands and hearts, and bring their concerns and hopes to God. As Christians, when we gather in prayer, and in His name, Christ reminds us that he is with us. Mathew 18: 19-20 reads “Again, amen, I say to you, if two of you agree on earth about anything for which they are to pray, it shall be granted to them by my heavenly Father. For where two or three are gathered together in my name, there am I in the midst of them.”
Are you feeling overwhelmed with life today? Are you experiencing marital dissatisfaction? Are you worried about health issues, finances, and the wellbeing of your children? Are the demands of your job creating stress and anxiety? You’re not alone, today’s family is faced with many of these challenges. There is no doubt that we are living in times of high stress and anxiety and it’s taking a toll on marriages and families. Although things may seem to be spinning out of control, don’t lose hope, turn to our Lord in prayer. The weight of our problems and challenges is too heavy to carry on our own, but when we give it to God in prayer, the burden is light. Matthew 11: 28-30 says “Come to me, all you who labor and are burdened, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am meek and humble of heart; and you will find rest for yourselves. For my yoke is easy, and my burden light.”
Have you ever considered bringing your burden to God together as a couple? When it comes to couple prayer, most people are a little hesitant, but when you try it, you are reminded that you were made to be one with your spouse. Initially, we were hesitant too, partly because we never prayed together as a couple, and we also believed that our prayer life was meant to be private. We believe that your prayer life should be both; private and shared with your spouse. There is power in couple prayer. We recommend that you start off with small steps like saying grace together before meals, saying a prayer of gratitude in the evening before going to bed, or praying the rosary. What’s key is that you get started, and eventually the more you practice, the more you will start to feel comfortable with it. There is something powerful and beautiful that happens when you hear your spouse lift their heart to God and pray for your concerns, hopes, and dreams.
Whatever is heavy on your heart today, invite your spouse to join you in prayer and bring your petitions together to God. If your heart yearns for a deeper, more meaningful marital relationship, pursue God in prayer and ask him to help you. Our Lord desires to connect with you through prayer, he awaits you and your spouse. The Catechism of the Catholic Church (CCC) 2560 says this about prayer; “If you knew the gift of God! The wonder of prayer is revealed beside the well where we come seeking water: there, Christ comes to meet every human being. It is he who first seeks us and asks us for a drink. Jesus thirsts; his asking arises from the depths of God’s desire for us. Whether we realize it or not, prayer is the encounter of God’s thirst with ours. God thirsts that we may thirst for him.” Wow! God desires to connect with us through prayer!! Take that step together and connect with him! You will not regret it!
Over the many years of praying together as a couple, we’ve come to believe that God yearns to be in relationship with us, and when we invite him to participate in our lives, he will pour his grace and blessings into our marriage. We’ve also learned that there are 3 Ways that couple prayer strengthens the marital union.
Increases Peace and Hope –Who doesn’t desire more peace and hope in their marriage? This is a common denominator across the human race, we all want it. The question is how do we obtain it? Prayer! Prayer! Prayer! Don’t stop even though it may seem like God isn’t listening or doesn’t care. Sometimes God will allow us to go through the challenges of life to help us grow in our trust in him, but it doesn’t mean he has abandoned us. Most people quit when they don’t see the results they want, when they want it…but we say don’t give up! Be persistent in your prayer life and you will obtain the peace and hope you desire.
Agreeing with your spouse to have a prayer life together will change your relationship, it certainly did for us. When we joined hands and lifted our pain, concerns and hopes to our Lord, he as the loving Heavenly Father that he is, poured his grace and mercy into our relationship, and as a result we experienced more peace and hope beyond our imagination. Couple prayer has helped us turn our hearts toward each other, not away. The Catechism of the Catholic Church (CCC) 2559 says “Prayer is the raising of one’s mind and heart to God or the requesting of good things from God”. If you are seeking more peace and hope, join hands and raise your minds and hearts to God!!
Discernment to Make Decisions – Life is about making decisions. If you just take a moment and pause to reflect on your life, you will realize that wherever you may be in life, it’s a result of decisions you’ve made. Being able to discern and make good decisions will serve you well. This is why it’s so critical to turn to God in prayer and ask him for his wisdom and plans for your marriage and family. For us, God is at the center of our lives and we’ve made it a habit to include him in all of our affairs, small and large. Prayer will help you and your spouse open your hearts and gain clarity of thought so that you can hear God’s voice. He will speak to your heart and guide you to make decisions that will best serve your relationship and strengthen your unity. If you are looking for direction, we encourage you to go deep and search your heart in prayer. The Catechism of the Catholic Church (CCC) 2563 reminds us that God dwells in our hearts…” The heart is the dwelling-place where I am, where I live; The heart is our hidden center, beyond the grasp of our reason and of others”.
Humility and Harmony – When couples find themselves disagreeing and feeling stuck on an issue, many times the culprit is pride. Pride can and will destroy marriages, no doubt about it. This is why prayer can be a critical weapon to crush pride. The antidote for pride is humility, and humility is obtained through a repentant heart and prayer. The beauty of a humble heart is that it leads to compassion, understanding, forgiveness, healing, and reconciliation. When you are in the middle of a heated fight, the last thing you are thinking about is couple prayer, so we recommend that you pause and take a time out, let the high emotions diffuse. Then after some time has gone by, gather together and lift your prayers to God. Hearing your spouse praying to God and asking for mercy, healing, and reconciliation will move your heart and melt away the pride. God will be moved by your humility and willingness to seek his grace, and as a result, he will bless your marriage with the harmony you desire.
If you are seeking ways to strengthen your marital union, we highly recommend you consider couple prayer. Start off slow, take little steps, and be patient with it. It offers so many benefits and blessings that you will not regret trying it. Make that investment of time for the sake of your relationship, it will change your marriage!!