TEXT: HEB. 13:4, ECCL. 9:7,9, GEN. 2:24
We had the great privilege of hearing from a guest speaker, Doug Fields, this weekend. He has over 30 years of youth ministry experience, has written over 60 books, and is passionate about helping people build strong marriages and impacting the next generation.
TARGET TIME: 5-10 MINUTES
Share with the group one of your favorite memories from your marriage.
If you aren't married, share with the group a great memory about your parents' marriage.
TARGET TIME: 45-50 MINUTES
This week Doug Fields focused in on the importance of advocating for marriage. Whether you are single, married, or divorced it is important to esteem marriage as highly valuable. He reminded us that marriage is a gift from God that impacts the community and the world. He focused on the example of a backup singer that supports the main singer. We as a church are the backup singers that are called to support marriage.
Read Hebrews 13:4a and discuss the question below.
1. What does it mean to honor your spouse?
a. Doug shared that the most consistent and significant predictor of happy marriages was whether one's spouse expressed gratitude.
2. How can you express gratitude to your spouse on a daily basis?
a. 1,440 minute per day- 1 %of that time is 15 minutes. Sitting knee to knee and eye-to-eye honoring your spouse and encouraging each other
3. We, as people of faith, believe that change can always happen. Regardless of where you are in your marriage, it can be changed and improved through the power of the Holy Spirit. Share with the group a time when you have seen positive change happen in your life or in the lives of those around you.
Read Ecclesiastes 9:7, 9a and discuss the question below.
4. Meaningless in this passage can be translated as fleeting.
a. Ex.- You need to enjoy [prioritize] your marriage because life is fleeting.
b. Marriage is a gift God gives us. What is one way you can focus on enjoying your marriage this week.
5 benefits of dating your spouse are:
• Lines of communication are kept open
• Getting out of a rut in your relationship
• Demonstrates commitment to your spouse and your children
• Relieves stress
• Rediscover passion and sexual intimacy.
5. Share with your group which of these five benefits you think is most important for marriages in our cultures. Why?
Read Gen.2:24 and discuss the questions below.
Doug shared the importance of prioritizing marriage above parenting.
6. What benefits do you think will come from prioritizing your marriage above your parenting?
7. What steps are you taking now to make sure that you will have a strong marriage after your children grow up and leave home?
Pray as a group for those with marriages. Pray that your group will be of encouragement and support to the marriages they are connected with through family, work, and church.
LIVE IT OUT:
Doug shared that the quickest way to enjoy your marriage is to date each other. Plan a date with your spouse over this next week. Ask your group to keep you accountable for making that date happen.