One major thing you have to understand about a relationship is that at its foundation is two sinners trying to live as one. Awww, how romantic. Conrad, my friend, you have a way with words.
The more you get to know each other, the more sin you’ll see in that other person. You’ll start to see patterns. Like whenever they had a rough day at work, they tend to be impatient when they get home and speak rudely to you. Or like whenever you mention how ugly they are, they get angry.
There’s a common problem with a lot of Christians. We like to think about ministries and missions, but we often overlook those closest to us. Before we minister to those outside our family, don’t you think we should minister to those within? How can we worry about feeding others, if our own family is starving?
So what do we do in ministry? We draw them closer to God. Pretend for a sec that you were ministering to someone that needed to get over their alcoholism, what how would you act? You would find their weaknesses, pray for them continually, have patience, think long-term, encourage, and help when you can. Now just have that same ministry mentality with your spouse.
So how do we make a relationship better? See it as a ministry.
So what do we do?
1. Them. Figure out their weaknesses. When is their faith shaken? By finances, life problems, family? Do they complain, lose their patience, talk bad about others?
2. You. How can you either help them overcome their weaknesses or minimize situations that trigger their weaknesses? If they lose their patience with the kids, can you deal with the kids first? If they lose faith because of life problems, what scripture do they need to hear? If they complain a lot, how can you set the example of thankfulness?
3. Prayer. First off, you should be praying together. Then add both of the above to your daily prayer. You pray for wisdom and their weaknesses. They pray for wisdom and your weaknesses. When you care about something, you tend to pray for it more often. So if our relationships matter to us, we’ll make it a priority in prayer. And when you try to pray for something often, the more it’ll be on your mind, and the more you’ll remember to minister.
But the key to all this is believing that your relationship is a primary ministry, so that you can act accordingly.
PHP 2:1 If you have any encouragement from being united with Christ, if any comfort from his love, if any fellowship with the Spirit, if any tenderness and compassion,  then make my joy complete by being like-minded, having the same love, being one in spirit and purpose.  Do nothing out of selfish ambition or vain conceit, but in humility consider others better than yourselves.  Each of you should look not only to your own interests, but also to the interests of others. PHP 2:5 Your attitude should be the same as that of Christ Jesus: PHP 2:6 Who, being in very nature God, did not consider equality with God something to be grasped, PHP 2:7 but made himself nothing, taking the very nature of a servant, being made in human likeness. PHP 2:8 And being found in appearance as a man, he humbled himself and became obedient to death– even death on a cross!
Take Time To Pray: Pray with your spouse about the spiritual weaknesses you wish to overcome. And ask God to help you think about ministry to the people closest to you. Today’s Fruit of the Spirit: Faithfulness. Faithfulness to minister everyday to those closest do you. Just because God picked someone out for you and you found that person doesn’t mean that your relationship is automatically going to be awesome. It takes work, dedication and separate bank accounts.