What Christian married couples should do if they are tempted to divorce

A couple shows a wedding ring, which could fall off easily as soon as they decide to divorce later on.Reuters

Marriage is a lifetime covenant that requires much effort to maintain and grow. God wants to enable married couples to love one another and bless them so that they could have a fulfilling marriage, one that brings glory to God.

But what happens when a husband and wife hit upon problems in their relationship? Worse, when they are tempted to divorce one another?

Problems are normal, divorce isn't

Couples today, especially young ones, need to understand that problems are normal. In marriage, husbands and wives will have some conflict every now and then, owing to the fact that they are two different individuals with different styles, tastes, opinions, preferences and so on. These conflicts aren't necessarily detrimental to the marriage; in fact, they could even be helpful.

When a problem arises and the couple fails to respond to it properly, however, it can soon blow up into something bigger and keep growing until both parties decide that the relationship is beyond repair and the best thing to do is just divorce one another.

The process of divorcing is long and painful: hearts are broken, lives are shattered, and a covenant promise before the Lord is broken instead of being kept.

Dear friends, there's a better way. Divorce is not the only option you have when you're tempted to get away from your problematic marriage. In fact, if you trust in God and call on Him for help, divorcing your spouse isn't the option – divorcing your problem is.

Dealing with the problem

Friend, the Bible tells us that God doesn't want divorce even though human laws allow it (depending on where you are).

"[Jesus] answered, "Have you not read that He who made them at the beginning 'made them male and female,' and said, 'For this reason a man shall leave his father and mother and be joined to his wife, and the two shall become one flesh'? So they are no longer two, but one flesh. Therefore what God has joined together, let no man put asunder."" (Matthew 19:4-6)

Now that we've established that, here are some things you should do if you feel tempted to divorce your spouse.

1) Know what God thinks about it

The Bible is clear on the issue of divorce: God hates it (see Malachi 2:16). The Bible is also clear on the issue of husbands and wives: God wants them to love one another and never leave one another (see Ephesians 5:21-33; Matthew 19:6). Let His Word shape your thinking.

2) Prayerfully work with your spouse in resolving the conflict or problem behind the temptation to divorce

Don't throw the towel in yet! Now that you know that God fully supports your marriage, prayerfully work on solving the problem with your spouse. Remember, your spouse is not the problem (see Ephesians 6:12) – the problem is the problem. Look into the issues, whether it's a character flaw, missed responsibilities and opportunities, or wrong choices, and then address that.

3) Commit and re-commit to loving one another

I know it's easier said than done, but committing to love one another and sticking to it will always work better than the decision to leave. Not only do you show love for each other (you'll be happy you did), you will also fulfill your vows to God and He will bless that.

A last comment

Friends, God knows us. In fact, He knows us better than ourselves, and He knows our spouses better than we do. Let's trust Him to help us as well as do His will for our marriages.