Your Spiritual Connection Matters

Spiritual Connection Matters - Pixabay Two HeartsI firmly believe the spiritual dimension in marriage is indispensable. It has the power to change lives and homes, especially when both husband and wife share similar spiritual beliefs and practices. It’s not by mistake that when Paul wrote about selecting a prospective spouse, the one thing he chose to focus on was the spiritual connection. Paul clearly said that a follower of Christ must marry another follower of Christ. As he described it, the other person must belong to the Lord. (1 Corinthians 7:39)

Your Spiritual Connection Matters

Having been raised in a home where I saw firsthand the effects of spiritual disharmony, even between two professing Christians, I am in complete agreement with Paul. If you want to do yourself a big favor, make sure you and the person you marry are on the same page spiritually. If you’re a follower of Christ, marry another follower of Christ. Otherwise, your life and your home will suffer from your differing spiritual beliefs.

Often when a believer marries an unbeliever, there is a detrimental impact on the believer’s faith. Moses acknowledged this potential danger when he told the Israelites not to marry someone who did not share their spiritual beliefs. Before the Israelites returned to the Promised Land, which was occupied by people who had substituted their own man-made gods for the one true God, Moses warned them, Do not intermarry with them. Do not give your daughters to their sons or take their daughters for your sons, for they will turn your sons away from following me to serve other gods. (Deuteronomy 7:3-4)

A Sad Picture

Unfortunately, they ended up doing the very thing Moses told them not to do. The Israelites “took their daughters in marriage and gave their own daughters to their sons, and served their gods. The Israelites did evil in the eyes of the LORD. They forgot the LORD their God and served the Baals and the Asherahs.” (Judges 3:6-7)

A sad picture, isn’t it? I’m sure those parents had the best of intentions when they gave their kids away in marriage. They probably wanted their children to experience the joys of companionship, child rearing, security, and love in marriage. But you have to ask yourself, was the trade-off they made worth it? Sure, they ended up married. But they also ended up abandoning God. I call that a bad deal.

After God took a backseat in their lives, these newly married couples were left to make their marriages work in their own strength. Let me tell you, that’s a shaky way to begin and grow a marriage. The Bible goes so far as to say, Unless the Lord builds the house, its builders labor in vain. (Psalm 127:1) Trying to build a home without God’s help is destined for trouble and failure. I doubt that’s what you want out of marriage!

Stay out of a Spiritual Mismatch

Years after Moses warned the Israelites not to intermarry, the apostle Paul gave similar advice in his two letters to the Christians in Corinth. In his first letter he told them to marry only a fellow believer. In his second letter he added, Do not be yoked together with unbelievers. (2 Corinthians 6:14)

Since most of us don’t use yokes today, we miss the full impact of what Paul is saying. In Paul’s day, a yoke was a bar or piece of wood that linked two animals together. When two working animals, like oxen, were evenly connected by a yoke, it empowered them to do more together than they could have done apart. But if the animals were unequally yoked, in kind or size, the work was hampered by their differences. Everything they would attempt to do together would end up being more difficult.

Paul urged Christ followers not to be yoked together with an unbeliever. The differences are too great. Doing so would make it difficult or impossible to work and live together. A spiritual mismatch would make it tough to be married.

Marrying an Unbeliever

I not only saw that firsthand in my own childhood, but I’ve seen it many times since, as I’ve counseled spouses who are in a spiritual mismatch. Stephanie’s story is pretty typical.

I know I should have never married him. I knew what the Bible said about marrying an unbeliever. But I ignored it. I just figured it would all work out. Well, it hasn’t. I am so frustrated. It’s gotten to the point in our marriage now where he doesn’t want me to go to church on Sunday. He says it’s the only day we can have together as a family. But I want our two children to grow up in the church. I want them to continue going to Sunday school. I can’t imagine them not being able to enjoy seeing their friends and teachers at church and benefiting by all that they are learning. So, Pastor Dave, what should I do?

Don’t Make a Spiritual Mismatch Mistake

You know what I tell wives and husbands who come into my office frustrated by their spouse’s lack of spiritual interest —or worse yet, their desire for no one else in the family to be involved in a church? I basically say, “Work for a compromise. That’s all you can do right now. Let him/her know how you feel, but don’t ram your opinion down his/her throat. Accept whatever she decides. Be kind and loving and patient. Do your best to show Christianity through your love and lifestyle. And pray like mad that God will change his/her heart.”

I’d like to say that advice always works, but it doesn’t. If you’re reading this because you’re thinking about getting engaged, the best thing I can say to you is don’t make a spiritual mismatch mistake. If the person you are considering marrying is not on the same page with you spiritually, back off.

This article comes from the book, Before You Get Engaged. It is written by David Gudgel and Brent Gudgel, with Danielle Fitch, and is published by Thomas Nelson. This book offers advice and direction for those who are dating who are considering whether or not they will want to eventually marry. It can be seen as a pre-engagement book —which makes it unique. It aims at equipping you with insight, and peace to make one of the biggest decisions of your life.

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Filed under: Single Yet Preparing

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13 responses to “Your Spiritual Connection Matters

  1. (FLORIDA)  A lot of that works, but about today’s society no one stays committed anymore. I have been married for 18 years and we are separated about to get a divorced, I know I should have stood my ground and not marry him. We both believe in God but, we are still missing the component –that spiritual connection that my husband says that we are missing. I think a big part of it is that we got married because I was pregnant. How do you fix a problem like that, is there a any way to work that out?

    1. (UNITED STATES)  I got married because I got pregnant. We both worked for the same company; however, worked opposite shifts for the sake of child care and the fact that he didn’t have enough senority to work day shift. Anyway, needless to say baby #2 came 2 years later, also having children late in life, 40 and 42 presented a certain amount of challenges. 19 years later this marriage is on the brink of falling apart. Don’t ever, and I mean don’t ever settle, because as the saying goes to get what you asked for.

  2. (USA) Claudia, you say you believe in God then you should also believe in his word. God tells us not to get divorced, and Jesus tells us that the only reason we do get divorced is because of our hard hearts.

    Pray for both yours and your husbands heart to be softened, and God will do so. For He tells us that whatever we (his disciples) ask in his name He will give. Jesus also tells us that if a child asks for some bread his father does not give him a stone, and how much more our Father in heaven will give us what we ask. Seek to pray with your husband. Remember no problem is too big for the Lord to overcome; it’s only us that can get in His way. It is never too late for God to work. Your brother in Christ, Drew

  3. (UK)  Thank God I found this website. I am a Muslim believer but also find great comfort in the Bible & its prayers and find solace in churches.

    I found this site as I have been struggling with the ending of a relationship that probably didn’t meet with God’s approval anyway! He had no belief in God or spiritually aware, whereas I did. Reading this has helped heal my pain that much more. Thank God this site exists!

  4. (SOUTH AFRICA)  Linda, whatever it is that you couldn’t let go of in your heart – the Lord has done it. And it gratifies me that you were able to admit to it that you were struggling because what draws back a lot of people is being in denial. God knows why He allowed all of this to happen, it was meant to teach you some lesson and to draw you closer to Him. He says in His word that we must seek Him first, then all the other things will follow. Receive with your faith a break-through, nothing will set you back. Remain in God and He shall remain in you. From a caring heart. God Bless You

  5. (BOTSWANA)  I thank my good God with all my heart for the existence of this website. I have learnt more than a lot and I believe from now on, I will make that decision that I could have made a long time ago. I think I have always known what’s the best thing to do, just that I have been stubborn. Thank you so much again, may God’s hand be upon all your undertakings in Jesus’s mighty name.

  6. (US)  I am kinda in the same boat. My fiance’ and i lived together until about 2 weeks ago. I felt the tug on my heart from God and chose to listen. I felt the need to ask him to move out due to all of our arguing. He says that he misses me and wants me back but I know that our paths are going in different directions. He says that he doesn’t care if I go to church but I also know that the more I become involved in the church, the more we will pull apart.

    The Bible says not to marry a non Christian and if you already have then it’s up to you to stay in it and try and make it work, but it will be hard. I foresee that happening and I don’t want to live like that. However, I have kids from a previous marriage and they are crushed. I just need some encouratgement right now.

  7. (GHANA) I Thank God for this site. I am a young widow (31 years of age). I found myself involved with my ex-boyfriend again who does not believe in Jesus Christ. We both thought of continuing from where we left off in the past so as to get married. But I never had peace with this decision. I searched through scriptures to know God’s will concerning my decision. I also surfed the internet for Christian Marriage sites.

    I thank God for coming across this site. The will of God is clear on this issue and so I am fully prepared to back off from such a relationship that will only decrease my commitment to God, my Creator and Redeemer.

  8. (US) It amazes me how many believers in Jesus (like myself, in times past) mess around, get sexually, emotionally and whatever else involved with a person that IS not saved and/or carnal and not walking right with Him. There are equally as many females doing this as males (in my opinion).

    The scriptures are full of warnings, admonitions, examples that forbid born again believers with marrying unbelievers. Why should we then “date”them? This is no joke people, God is not giving us His suggestions, these are commands because He loves us and knows what is the best. However, we snuggle, kiss, touch, and seduce (yeah ladies, seduce) with a child of darkness –one under satans control? We ought not to be doing any of this even with true born again believers!

    How does it feel climbing into bed with your mate that has satan dwelling in his/her spirit? They can’t love you the way they should. The reasons for this are many, but it’s time to stop this long before our hearts get entangled with anyone for that matter. A broken heart hurts more than any pain I have suffered in life and takes the longest to heal. But God through Jesus wants to heal and keep us from these things.

    Lets listen to Him and do what he says, then you and I WILL be blessed! Peace, Steven

  9. I am in love with a believer. His faith dipped a bit but circumstances in life has hopefully made him see that he fully has to come to Christ. People may not understand our connection but there is love. He had baggage and so do I but I believe that Jesus said cast your burdens on to Jesus for He cares for you. I want to help build his vision and he always encourages me.

    1. Mary, Just so you know, you are trekking on very dangerous territory. The further you go on into this relationship the more you engage your heart. You should not marry someone who does not have a sound spiritual connection with the Lord. Many, many have gone down spiritually when they went against the Lord on this issue. Instead of bringing the person they loved up spiritually, they went down, and those that didn’t, lived to regret their heart’s involvement. What I’m concerned about for you is that eventually you will feel so much love for this man, you will compromise and marry him and/or compromise yourself morally. Obviously, from what you wrote, there are other “people” who know you who are concerned, as well. We often think that others don’t “understand” and more times than not, they did and we didn’t.

      Missionary dating and involvements can really be spiritually dangerous. At the VERY LEAST I hope you will not marry until you are very sure that this guy is sound spiritually and truly loves the Lord –not just (secretly) acting like he does because he cares about you. There was just a 2-day broadcast featured on Focus on the Family, which I hope you can somehow listen to… the title is “A Fresh Look at Dating.” The first program (which gives you the ability to listen) is presently housed at this link (although it will break after a short period of time): and the second part is housed at: They interviewed Gary Thomas who wrote the book, The Sacred Search, which I HIGHLY recommend you read, if you can obtain it some way. I believe it will help you in many, many ways as you are dating this man, and before you involve your heart any further.

  10. I married a man who is seven day Adventist and I’m apostolic. We have different beliefs. I love my husband very much. But we argue when we discuss the word of God. So we don’t talk about it at all. I love the word, being a teacher of the word, and having studied so much, also spending much time in God’s presence learning from the Holy Spirit. I speak in tongues, do spiritual warfare and even flow in deliverance, which involves casting out devils.

    I believe in hell. He doesn’t believe in any of these things. He believes God does everything for us. All we have to do is attend church, but he believes in the Sabbath strongly. I don’t go to my church anymore; I attend his. All he want to do is watch TV, so that’s what we do. My relationship with God has changed. I refuse to join his church because that’s not who I am. I will be living a lie. I just can’t forget the things God has taught. I pray but not like I use to. My spiritual life has changed and I want it back without losing my husband. He is supposed to be my covering in the spirit. Please help.

    1. Dear Lios, I also married my husband who is a Seventh Day Adventist. I was an Anglican at the time. At first I also rebelled but as I attended his church my eyes were opened to the most unbelievable truths. I do not wish for this to become a biblical debate as I believe God has His people in every church. It has however been the best thing that ever happened to me and I praise God for His guidance in my life.