The New Year is a great time to start that kind of habit.  Invite the Lord into the bedroom of your marriage, and ask Him to wash your heart, mind and habits with His Word of truth.  "It was for freedom that Christ set us free; therefore keep standing firm and do not be subject again to a yoke of slavery" Galatians 5:1 NASU. 

The garage of your marriage is the place where all the stuff goes that you don't know what to do with.  Just like issues pertaining to sexuality, there might be something in your marriage that you wrestle with individually or can't agree on as a couple that ends up getting tossed in the "garage."  Those hot button issues often spring up in the middle of an argument, but you might not have the opportunity to adequately discuss it when tensions are high.  Take some time to think about why these issues matter and why they trip you up.

Sometimes journaling my thoughts before I approach my husband really helps me clarify my perspective over an emotionally charged subject. Praying always helps!  God invites His people to call on Him during a specific time of trouble.  While our times and situation aren't the same as Israel's, I think the principle still applies: "Call to Me and I will answer you, and I will tell you great and mighty things, which you do not know." -- Jeremiah 33:3-4 NASU.  If there is something you don't know how to handle in your marriage, ask God!

The den of your marriage represents personal recreation. It might literally be a room or it might be the golf course, shopping mall or other activity.  When you go about your personal recreation, is it a time/activity that is open to your spouse or is it one that is secretive?  For example, hiding your latest shopping binge might signal that you need more transparency in your relationship. 

There is nothing wrong with having a place or recreation of your own but before you retreat to your corner of the world, genuinely ask yourself if your recreation of choice is accessible to your spouse if he or she needs or desires to join you. Also, ask yourself if you or your mate might need to create places of solitude that is currently lacking.  A friend who lives in a small house with energetic little ones recently got a sewing machine.  She tells me how she can't wait to get a little table to set it up on and how she is going to make her sewing corner her "very own little place." 

We all need our own little place, but when we are there, we should maintain transparency with our spouses.

As you survey your organizational to-do list, consider your marriage. It is a gift from God that is worth every ounce of effort you put into it.  May 2010 be a year of joy and fruitfulness for you and your spouse.

January 30, 2010

For a list of Scripture prayers to pray over your marriage, contact: info@InHisEyesMinistries.com

April Motl and her husband, Eric, minister at their church in Southern California where he is a pastor on staff.  April is the founder of In His Eyes Ministries; a teaching ministry devoted to helping women see their life from God's perspective. For more information about the ministry visit www.InHisEyesMinistries.com.