Saving A Christian Marriage From Divorce: Ten Things You Should Know

By Dr. Tracy Scott

It’s sad but true. All of us have been affected, either directly or indirectly, by divorce.

Recently, it was stated that: “While it may be alarming to discover that born again Christians are more likely than others to experience a divorce, that pattern has been in place for quite some time. Even more disturbing, perhaps, is that when those individuals experience a divorce many of them feel their community of faith provides rejection rather than support and healing. But the research also raises questions regarding the effectiveness of how churches minister to families. The ultimate responsibility for a marriage belongs to the husband and wife, but the high incidence of divorce within the Christian community challenges the idea that churches provide truly practical and life-changing support for marriages.” Barea Research Group

Remember God’s attitude about divorce “I hate it” (Malachi 2:16). I pray that none of us regard divorce as a slapdash or indifferent disposition.While there are several important concepts or principals that can help prevent a Christian marriage from entering the divorce court; listed below are ten principals that I believe will be most helpful.

1. Sincere commitment of your life to Jesus Christ. By having a personal relationship with Jesus Christ at least three important opportunities become instantly available to you:

· A personal relationship with Jesus Christ provides you with a fundamental understanding of what’s right and wrong

· A personal relationship with Jesus Christ provides you comfort in the time of sorrow or when feeling “the blues”

· A personal relationship with Jesus Christ can help to steer your life around corners and guide you through the blind spots

2. Commitment to a Christ-centered marriage. A Christ-centered marriage exhibits at least three behaviors:

· A Christ-centered marriage demonstrates patience in the times of stress and challenge

· A Christ-centered marriage walks with a heart of forgiveness and each spouse is able to do something for one another, that is beneficial to that spouse only

· A Christ-centered marriage is slow to anger and responds to emotions without vindictive desires

3. Christian marriages make a “No matter what decisions”. A Christian marriage that strives to prevent divorce have the heart of a Daniel and demonstrates at least three behaviors:

· A Christian marriage makes a “No matter what decision” by stating that they are willing to do what ever it will take to prevent divorce from occurring

· A Christian marriage makes a “No matter what decision” and like Daniel demonstrates courage in the face of marital adversity and strife

· A Christian marriage makes a “No matter what decision” like Daniel by persevering with a “Right heart condition or response” when tempted to make an easy wrong decision about the marriage instead of a hard right decision

4. Christian marriages take the word “divorce” out of their vocabulary. A Christian marriage that strives to prevent divorce understands that using the word divorce in their marriage encourages them to head to the divorce court in at least three ways:

· Christian marriages understand that “Life and death are in the power of the tongue” (Proverbs 10:18-21; James 3:6).

· Christian marriages understand that as long as you talk about divorcing, it becomes an option

· Christian marriages understand that when arguments arise, we move in the path of least resistance; therefore if we are thinking about divorcing or using the word, it becomes the path of least resistance

5. Christian marriages that don’t divorce understands that their spouse can not meet all of their needs. A Christ-centered marriage that moves away from divorce understands that God alone is the ultimate fulfiller of their needs in three ways:

· Christian marriages understands that it is God who gives you security and purpose in life

· Christian marriages understands that it is God meets your physical needs and fills your hunger for love

· Christian marriages understands that while their childhood development may have been inadequate (real or un-real), that they cannot expect their spouse to fulfill those unmet needs

6. Christian marriages that are not divorcing walk with a heart of forgiveness. These marriage demonstrate forgiveness in at least three ways:

· Christian marriages understand that forgiveness starts as a choice of the heart and an act of free-will

· Christian marriages understand that walking in forgiveness is a daily process

· Christian marriages walk in forgiveness and move away from strife by not personally attacking their mate, tearing them down

7. Christian marriages that desire to not divorce are careful not to levy personal attacks against their spouse and they understand that:

· Christian marriages understand the importance of using wisdom when addressing their mate, especially during times of frustration

· Christian marriages understand that attacking their mate only escalates the situation

· Christian marriages understand that using harsh words or exaggerating the situation decreases the opportunities to resolve the conflict

8. Christian marriages that prevent divorce from occurring in their marriages understand that their spouse is their helper and not their enemy, thus:

· Christian marriages understand that when they speak harshly about their mate, their mate become an enemy

· Christian marriages understand that marriage can be the closest thing to heaven (helper) or the closest thing to hell (enemy)

· Christian marriages understand that having faulty expectations about their mate can encourage their mate to become an enemy when those expectations are not fulfilled

9. Christian marriages who are not divorcing understand the power of praise and prayer, especially intercessory prayer for their spouse. They understand that the definition of intercessory prayer could be stated as:

· Christian marriages understands that it is Jesus Christ who sits at the right hand of God who makes intercession for us

· Christian marriages understand the importance of praying on the behalf of their mate (intercessor)

· Christian marriages understands the importance of becoming a mediator between God and their mate (intercessor)

10. Christian marriages that move away from divorce understands that counsel is beneficial especially when conflicts or convictions are challenging; therefore they:

· Christian marriages will voluntary go for help (Gal. 2:1-2)

· Christian marriages will seek out the assistance of professionals or those seasoned in leadership (Gal. 2: 2-9)

· Christian marriages understand that all truth belongs to God (John 14:6)

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Comment by Rev. Dr. Tracy Scott on August 12, 2009 at 8:39am
Thanks for sharing your thoughts. Taking responsibility is always important provided you have the proper insights and direction. And yes, we are always looking for resouces. Please share your information on our radio station page at We also interview book authors from time to time. God bless you in your work.
Comment by Justine E. Hanif on August 11, 2009 at 10:43pm
I found these principles to be very good. If practiced, a lot of christian marriages would succeed. You also tactfully addressed the issue of christians who find themselves divorced but find little support. My book "Get Over It!!! A Down to Earth Look at the Issues of Christian Divorce and Remarriage" has brought healing to separated and divorced christians. As you minister to those whose marriage has failed, please consider my book as a resource. A review is available on Amazon. Also check out my website I will be checking your site.

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