1. Lack of friendship in marriage. Marriage cannot be sustained with the titles of husband and wife. Titles can easily become labels to live up to for society leading to “This is my role, I cannot do that”.. friendship makes the two grow closer.
~ “One who has unreliable friends soon comes to ruin, but there is a friend who sticks closer than a brother.” Proverbs 18:24
2. Wrong motives. When you marry for society, only for sex or because you’ve grown of age it will not last. Marriage is a commitment by two grown ups in need of mutual companionship ready to be responsible for each other, not merely the next phase of adulthood after getting a job or a status for social prestige
~ “All a person’s ways seem pure to them, but motives are weighed by the LORD.” Proverbs 16:2
3. Lust. Anything built on lust doesn’t last. If all that attracted the two was physical, it will not last.
~ “The mind governed by the flesh is death, but the mind governed by the Spirit is life and peace.” Romans 8:6
4. Lack of preparedness. Jesus said count the cost before committing to anything
~ “Suppose one of you wants to build a tower. Won’t you first sit down and estimate the cost to see if you have enough money to complete it? For if you lay the foundation and are not able to finish it, everyone who sees it will ridicule you, saying, ‘This person began to build and wasn’t able to finish.” Luke 14: 28-30
5. Lack of vision. Vision inspires commitment.
~ “Where there is no vision, the people perish” Proverbs 29:18
6. Lack of knowledge. We go to school to study to be professionals but we don’t take time to understand the institution of marriage and the family unit.
~ “my people are destroyed from lack of knowledge’ Hosea 4:6
7. Poor gender relations where men feel attacked and entitled and women feel unstoppable. Too many marriages are suffering due to gender wars.
~ “There is neither Jew nor Gentile, neither slave nor free, nor is there male and female, for you are all one in Christ Jesus.” Galatians 3:28
8. Lack of understanding of what love is. Many of us have been hurt from childhood, heartbroken when dating and have no idea what to love and be loved means. We need to heal, hurt people hurt people.
~”Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. It does not dishonor others, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs. Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth. It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres. Love never fails. ” 1 Corinthians 13: 4-8
9. Listening to too many voices. Many couples end up being distracted and confused because they listen to too many voices; parents, friends, media and even their ex; this usually is by couples with a low self esteem and with weak self identity or who are manipulated by peer pressure.
~ “For God is not the author of confusion, but of peace, as in all churches of the saints.” 1 Corinthians 14:33
10. Sexual indiscipline. This leads to affairs, flirting with outsiders, suspicions and eventually divorce or marriages that exist legally but are in fact dead.
~ “Then when lust has conceived, it gives birth to sin; and when sin is accomplished, it brings forth death.” James 1:15
11. Disjointed growth. When the husband and wife start to grow apart spiritually, mentally, emotionally or financially; they might easily need each other less. The two should strive to grow as a team.
~ “Can two walk together, except they be agreed?” Amos 3:3
12. Blessings turned sour. The blessings of children, work and successful business if not properly managed can easily end up being a threat to the marriage. There is need to find a balance.
~ “You say, ‘I am rich; I have acquired wealth and do not need a thing.’ But you do not realize that you are wretched, pitiful, poor, blind and naked.” Revelations 3:17
13. Lack of patience. Marriage is not for people who give up easily, people who want the fruits but not the process.
~”Being confident of this, that he who began a good work in you will carry it on to completion until the day of Christ Jesus.” Philippians 1:6
14. Unresolved issues which get carried forward to the next day, the next month, the next year becoming complicated.
~”In your anger do not sin”: Do not let the sun go down while you are still angry,” Ephesians 4:26
15. Overspiritualization of marriage, this makes some think that praying alone will save their marriage, makes them elevate a pastor above their own spouse, makes them rigid leading to poor relations and intimacy with their spouse.
~”But seek ye first the kingdom of God, and his righteousness; and all these things shall be added unto you.”Matthew 6:33.. when God is adding “all these other things” like laughter, great sex, feelings, good times, fun, romance; don’t reject them
16. Individualism. Marriage is for two people who want to submit to each other; not those who let their ego win, are selfish or want to prove they are better.
~” submitting to one another out of reverence for Christ.” Ephesians 5:21