Why I Used To Hate Praying With My Husband
Since I stayed up late last night eating birthday cake with my husband, I have a guest blogger joining us today.
KM Logan is sharing her heart with you about prayer in marriage. But before we get into her post I want to tell you a few things about KM.
She is one of the first bloggers that encouraged me in this on-line ministry even though I have never met her in person! 🙂 Isn’t that neat how the Lord works? Over the last two years KM has come by my side every now and then an offered up a helping hand to me. She’s given me technical resources that I needed for my Facebook page, she’s offered to help me with resources for formatting and promoting my ebooks, and she even shared a part of my testimony in one of her recent ebooks for writers.
I’m humbled by her kindness towards me and this ministry. I appreciate her heart and I think you will too!
Do you pray daily with your spouse?
2 Things happen when you pray; the first is God’s power is invited into your marriage. The second is by communing with God together, God is intertwining your spirits deeply.
Study after study has shown that the old adage, “Couples who pray together, stay together” is true, and that couples that pray together daily have a significantly lower divorce rate.
Sounds great, right? Just start praying with your husband, and you’ll never get divorced. The truth is for many couples praying together is very, very hard. In fact that’s probably why so few couples make a habit of regular prayer together.
When my husband and I first got married, I would get irritated every time we prayed together. Maybe you’ve been there too.
Your eyes are closed and your husband is praying, but you’re not mentally there. Your mind is wandering and you can’t engage. It feels like your husband’s words are just hitting the ceiling and not being heard by God. It’s awkward.
You let out an audible sigh, or maybe you start to fidget. You’re husband senses you don’t really want to pray with him so he quickly says “Amen.” You let go of each other’s hands and you’re both sorely disappointed and hurting.
If both or one of you tend to speak your mind, you’ll get into a fight right then and there. If you tend to not verbalize your feelings, you’ll muddle your entire day with a heavy heart or just fall asleep angry. Neither of you are motivated to make daily prayer a habit.
Praying with your spouse is deeply intimate, and leaves you in a very vulnerable place. In some ways, it’s even more intimate and vulnerable than sex. Problems with a couple’s prayer life can mirror sexual intimacy issues. One spouse or both can feel like a failure. It’s hard to know how to fix problems when they arise, and it’s hard to make it a priority when things are going so poorly.
If you want a happy and healthy marriage though, you must pray together.
I was told before I got married to expect sex to be awkward at first, and expect it to take time for things to click. I wish someone would have told me the same thing about praying with my husband.
So how exactly do you make daily prayer a habit in your marriage when it can be so hard starting out? Here are a few lessons I’ve learned from our experience:
6 Lessons I’ve Learned About Prayer in Marriage
1) Expect awkwardness and push through it.
It’s very unlikely you’ll stumble upon your preferred way of praying together the first time. Don’t let it stop you from praying together.
2) It is up to you who prays and how you pray.
Some couples go back and forth between prayer requests when they pray. This did NOT work for my husband and me. Rather than going back and forth, one of us says the entire prayer. Most of the time, it is my husband that prays. Keep in mind it is very important for the husband to be the spiritual leader; he should be the one praying ½ of the time at the very least.
3) Don’t discourage your husband.
You should by all means express your frustrations with your husband when it comes to your prayer life, but do it verbally and do it kindly. Don’t let out audible sighs or fidget during prayer (yeah, I used to do that a lot, sorry honey). Rather, use kindly calculated words to try and fix the problems together.
4) Pray individually about developing a prayer life together.
When I got married I was used to praying on my own. I wasn’t used to sharing prayer time with anyone else. A LOT of personal prayer went into developing the prayer life my husband and I have today.
5) Get into the habit of praying twice every day, and you’ll almost always remember to pray at least once a day.
The turning point for my husband and I happened when we developed a daily prayer habit and started purposing ourselves to pray every morning and evening. It still took time to push through the awkwardness, but praying striving to pray twice a day together helped this happen faster.
6) Remember the true power of prayer isn’t prayer itself.
Praying may seem like the magic key for holding a marriage together, but it’s not prayer that’s the key. The power of God behind the prayer is the key. Prayer invites God into a marriage. If you strive to glorify Him as a couple, you can rest assured that God will receive the glory.
Do you struggle or have you ever struggled with praying with your husband? Let us know in the comments.
KM Logan is a wholly inadequate but strengthened wife, mother, and writer. She’d be thrilled if you’d stop by her blog KMLogan.com and say hi.
Live a poured out life for Christ,
My husband and I have trouble praying together. I do feel awkward. And it irritates me because he tries to force me to pray out loud and I would prefer not to. Especially since we just started and I’m trying to get my spiritual life back on track. It’s interesting that you say that your prayer life is connected to your spiritual life because we also have problems there too. I’m not sure what to do. In either departments. I don’t want to hurt his feelings or make him unresponsive to voicin issues I have. I have talked to him about both problems..
I have been exactly where you are. The more you pray the easier it get’s. Once I realized that praying with your husband is a struggle for a lot of women it actually freed up my expectations. If I had to go back and do things again, I think when we first started praying together I might just ask for both of us to do silent prayers instead. You’ll find your rhythm. Scripture promises if we seek we’ll find, and I believe that most definitely applies to prayer.
I meant you sexual life and prayer life are connected*
My husband and I pray together each night. He is usually the one who leads us in prayer and occasionally I will lead. Sometimes I feel like it’s more of a chore or ritual because the way I pray, especially when it comes to our family members I like to call out each name and if my husband forgets to mention someone I would interrupt and say to him, “Don’t forget so and so” and he gets angry whenever I do that. I know I should not, so what I have been doing is praying under my breath if he has forgotten to mention a family member. LOL The main point is that we are praying together and I truly believe that God honors that whether it may seem like a ritual each night, we do it because we do want to grow closer to God and to each other and also keep our family, friends and church family in prayer as well.
Good habits are always better than bad ones 🙂 If things feel like they’re becoming too ritualistic try praying in a different way together, but if it ain’t broke I wouldn’t worry too much about fixing it.
My husband and I used to pray at least 1 time each day, and I really miss it. He won’t pray with me anymore. He won’t be in the same room when I have prayer with my daughter. Any ideas of what to do?
I’m so sorry Kay. I’d highly recommend the book the “Power of a Praying Wife.” Even though we can’t control the spiritual life of others we can pray grace and spiritual protection for them.
I love praying with my husband. I can hear the depth of his brokenness before the Lord. I can taste the intimacy he has with God. And I can feel his heart for me. Sure, sometimes it’s awkward. Sometimes it’s emotionally challenging. And sometimes it’s silly… praise God for laughter! But it’s a wonderful blessing and a necessary part of our marriage!
I just went over this with my wife the other night and she still does not see a need for us to pray together. She says that she prays all day, and doesn’t know of any of her friends that pray with their husbands, so she doesn’t understand my desire for us to have a prayer time together. She has told me that me even asking her to pray makes her angry, since she tried for so long to get me to pray with her but wouldn’t. Since I have rededicated my life to Christ, she thinks I am in some kind of mid-life crisis and am trying to force everyone to have church every day when all I want to do is lead my family into strong prayer/study habits. I have sent her pages from your blog before, but she never wants to talk about anything I send her, if she is actually reading it. I really feel praying together is VERY IMPORTANT in our marriage. I have seen many Christian marriage/relationship blogs (yours included) that all stress on the importance of prayer! Hoping she will listen, and will continue to pray that we can come together before the Lord. Thank you for the post, I needed to hear it.
I’m sorry to hear about your situation. Just pray for her heart to soften towards the Lord so she’ll ultimately soften towards you.
We’ve been doing pretty good at praying together every night. I feel bad because I feel like it should be more intimate and we should feel spiritually connected when we do, but I don’t. It seems to be monotonous. I finally brought up that it would be nice to work on our prayer time together—making sure that we’re in the Spirit when we do and not just the tired flesh. We’ll see what happens! I’m excited and so thrilled to be able to look forward to connecting spiritually as one with our Father 🙂
I used to dream of praying with my husband. He would never pray with me 🙁 He resented God for so many years because he felt God was just toying with his life. He grew up in a very badly broken home and the sting from that just wouldn’t go away, no matter how blessed he is with me and our children…
He finally went off the deep end and left our family for a short time and destroyed our marriage in so many painful ways. Things that will always hurt both of us…BUT GOD!!!! I prayed for my husband for years leading up to this and especially during our short time apart. God fulfilled his promises to me. I tried to honor God and tried to love my husband unconditionally in spite of my own pain and when the guilt of what he had done to us kicked in, he tried to kill himself but couldn’t. GOD was protecting him for our family. My beloved husband returned after only a month of being gone, told me of how somehow, it felt like something just lifted all the lies from his head and shined the truth in his heart… He couldn’t deny it. He was truely sorry and broken from his sins.
We have had many blessings since his return, things I had been secretly praying for: we were baptized together last summer, we pray together (not often enough yet – several times a week, but we are both working on it and doing it more and more as it is important to both of us), our marriage has not been restored to the way it was (thank GOD!!!), but rather we have done a lot of hard work and started to rebuild in a much more amazing way than I could have ever dreamed: my husband is grateful for everything he has in his life for the first time, he is so much more beautiful inside than I ever imagined possible, and I am falling in love with this new man that God has given to me… All because of God and his power to change our hearts when we can’t (mine included). When someone loves us enough to pray for us regularly, God will pay attention and help. I am so blessed to be able to pray with my husband. I will NEVER complain if it gets awkward. I want him to lead and be confident. Support your husbands ladies! Believe in them, and stop worrying about what he’s not doing for you. Be grateful if he’s willing to pray with you… It’s hard to put the prideful ego in ourselves aside, but you MUST! Don’t do it for anyone other than for God. Remember what Jesus did for you and you will have the motivation you need.
Amen! Thank you so much for sharing this.
My wife and I were praying together at one time. Until she decided to use the prayer that I prayed as a “weapon” aginst me. We had been having problems in our marriage and it seemed like we on track for some recovery when I got up the courage to start asking her to pray w/ me. This seemed to be going well for awhile. I had prayed for God to “help me become the father and husband that He would have me to be” Then the first time we had an argument after this she said “I stood right there and heard you ask God to help you be a better father and husband, what happened to that?” As soon as she said that, I quit asking her to pray w/ me. I was being very open and vernurable and all she did was use my prayer as a “weapon” against me when she did not think that I was measuring up to her standards. This was a very heartbreaking experience. As of right now, our marriage is very “strained” to say the least and it certainly looks like the big “D”. This is not what I want at all but it seems that is the only thing that would make her happy. I would be devastated w/ a divorce but I don’t know how much longer I can go like this. There is no communication and seems like she is out to prove that she can make it w/out me. We have two boys and their attitude towards me is the same as hers. Not sure what to do. Any thoughts?
I’m so sorry to hear your marriage is so strained. I’m sure Jolene will have more advice but I’d highly recommend marriage counseling even if you’re the only one willing to go. There are many churches with trained counselors who will provide this for free.
Hi! My boyfriend and I have prayed together but, unfortunately, have not been consistent. At times, I feel awkward. To avoid that, it’s easier to not pray together. I know it’s important that we pray together now before we’re married. Do you have any tips on praying together as a boyfriend/girlfriend couple? Thanks for any advice offered!
You can still apply many of these same tips but do it when you gather for a date. Talk with your guy about this post and ask him what he’d like to do.
Thiis article is so encouraging. I thought I was going nutty. I used to have a very intimate relationship with God, I could sit with Him for hours. But time became sparse, baby, marriage moving and a whole lot of other added things. Me and my husband used to worship together on the piano and pray as well, but it seems like it all stopped. Why? It’s awkward. So glad I’m not alone. My husband is extremely hurt by this and it has put a damper on our relationship in pretty much every way. I feel selfish in a way that I cant just push through the awkwardness and get over it. It is extremely important to my husband. Does anyone have any ideas how to make it a little smoother, maybe by doing a devotional together? Has this worked for anyone
For my husband and I it was making time twice a day and just pushing through it. When we settled on twice a day once a day almost always happened.
Me and my boyfriend both know prayer is paramount in our relationship, we have been together for 3 months now, and best friends previous for about 2 years, always been Christian throughout our friendship, he has prayed in front of many on many occasions as he was one of the youth leaders for a long while (only 23yrs old mind you)
He is comfortable enough to pray in front of others, is the point i am trying to make. And even though i am bubbly and loud as a character, i am not at all confident in praying out loud in front of others, this then falls back in to our relationship….
I understand, as i mentioned earlier that praying in a relationship is paramount, i want to come together with God, but he knows how uncomfortable i am in trying to pray, i haven’t even attempted to pray yet, because i can’t even find the words, i’d just mumble. And sound silly.
I know it.
So i pray silently. He has always been the one to pray out loud.
I said tonight in the car when he dropped me home, can we pray before i get out, and he said what about, i said about his work training he is going through and his test tomorrow to pass his Lorry driving course, and me having more patience at work, etc etc… And he said (which broke my heart as he is a confident, strong willed, leading Christian guy. Said ‘Can’t we pray silently together, because i feel awkward when we pray together (that was the knife in the heart moment), because you don’t pray out loud, i feel weird doing it, it just, i dont know, feels awkward and i don’t like it.’
It broke my heart a little.
I really really want that intimate Godly connection, i want a healthy prayer life with him, i really really do.
But i need help.
How can i begin to pray outloud, when i can’t even find the words to create my first sentence let alone the whole thing!
I’ve tried to let the Holy Spirit guide me before, but when there are little no words to be found in my mind cos of the shear panic, there’s never a chance of forming a sentence…
Anyone got a format they usually go by?
Can just… Can someone help me at all?! Please…
I’m so sorry this reply is late – I’ve only discovered this website today.
Firstly, how are things going, dearie?
Secondly, I hated praying out loud for YEARS, and I still don’t always want to, but I have gotten better at it, so here are the things that worked for me:
a) praying in tongues.
When I don’t have words to pray, sometimes I have words in tongues… it’s almost like it gets translated, because after I say a few words (or more) in tongues, just quietly to myself, I then seem to get words to pray in English – words that are different than I thought I was going to say, but that are a fit for the situation. So if you don’t have the gift of tongues, it may be worth considering asking for it. Maybe have a chat with your pastor if you’re a bit unsure how to proceed, and of course, pray about it 🙂
b) writing out your prayer
In my particular case, I was leading a weekly ministry, and we really needed God’s help in a certain area, so I pretty much didn’t have any choice except to pray out loud in front of my team , which was also necessary to unify us in purpose if we’re all saying “Amen” to the same thing. Nervous wasn’t the word, which of course makes it even more difficult, so I thought about what we needed God’s help with (it was the same thing every week, at least for a time), wrote down a heartfelt prayer to that effect and took it to the meetings. I reasoned that I’d already prayed it once, so even if I only read it out loud, as opposed to praying it, as it were, that was fine, and my team could still join in genuinely and say Amen. By the second week it was easier to enter into a prayerful spirit when I said the words, and after a month or two, I was able to improvise a prayer that was similar to my written prayer but wasn’t exactly the same. (Yeah, I forgot my notebook on that day. God works in mysterious ways! :D) Since then I have had more practice at improvising prayers – I think about what I want to pray for, even if it is only for a few seconds, and then I can say something. Sometimes I pray one sentence out loud and then pray quietly, but I’m getting there. Is there a situation (e.g. at the beginning or end of your dates with your boyfriend, or at some other moment in your life outside of dating) where the same kind of prayer every time would be appropriate, that you can start by writing and reading out loud?
I hope you find a way through, dear sister. I also hope you have been or will be able to talk to your boyfriend about this – maybe show him this post as an icebreaker?
The love of Jesus to surround you and lead you through the shadows, one little baby step at a time.
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