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How Do I Love Thee "Food for Thought Before You Say "I Do" ~ Lesson Four & Five ~

Updated on July 23, 2022
DeBorrah K. Ogans profile image

Pastoral Counselor ordained Elder/Minister Ambassador at Alpha 7 Ministries M.A.Christian Clinical Counseling Certified in Creation Therapy

How Do I Love Thee

Food For Thought BEFORE You Say “I DO”

Getting married is a big decision! It is actually one of the biggest life altering decision you will ever make! Why not take some time and consider a few things?

In this 21st century we have experienced a worldwide economic recession. Many have been greatly impacted all over the world. Many corporations and businesses have closed. Many careers, jobs, estates and homes have been lost! Many have divorced, many families have suffered many have remarried, many children are hurting… It is important to seriously think of marriage as a lifetime commitment! Your marriage will be what you make it!

Work together on your finances

Finances are an important part of your marriage! When considering marriage it is also important to take into consideration the spending habits of both spouses. In order to build a strong marriage it is important to be on the same page as far as finances.

When or once there are children there are additional ensuing financial obligations to consider? Who provides the children's daycare? How much do you budget for daycare and...

It is wise to take into consideration what happens if there is a significant loss in income that imposes an unexpected hardship?

As a couple you must together be willing to adjust and do what is best for your household. In either case it is wise to be prepared in case of a sudden loss of income, death in the family, chronic illness of either spouse or… The traditional marriage vows say for better or worse… You must learn to give up “Me” ness for “We” ness!

Every marriage is different

Here in “How DO I Love THEE” you will find some basic suggestions. Here are lessons four & five! Always keep in mind each couple and situation is different… You may have more or less. You may be younger or older. You may have been married before? The basic principles of marriage remain the same! What is most valuable is your marriage! When you make or made your vows you are committing your lives to one another as well as the Lord.

There is usually a lot of planning that goes into having a beautiful ceremony! A wedding is a marvelous, wonderful, enjoyable, celebration regardless if there are a few or many in attendance! It is a lifelong memory that should be treasured and cherished! However, the time effort and energy that goes into planning this glorious occasion is often far greater than that of actually planning for the marriage itself!

Make plans for your life together: Leave room to be flexible

Please, Please set some time aside so you can together make plans for your life together. Think about your plenteous possibilities and goals you want to now achieve together!

After the honeymoon and the newness of being Mr. & Mrs. has passed reality will sink in; so what now? How do you handle your finances! How about alternating the responsibilities? Where do you worship? Do you have home Bible study & worship? There is much ahead in this journey to consider.

Marriage can continue to be a marvelous experience but it won’t just happen! It must be a priority to continue to grow together and make plans for your future together when or now that you are married…



The financial aspect of the marital relationship is very important. We often hear that money is the root of all evil. Actually the Scripture says: “The love of money is the root of all evil.” I Timothy 6 (KJV). We must be good stewards of whatever God puts in our possession. We must learn to become financially accountable and responsible. We must learn to live within our financial ability.

I would like to recommend to the working couple considering having children that the wife’s salary goes to the reserve emergency fund. Children have an unexpected way of deciding to arrive prematurely. When the budget incorporates the wife’s salary the unexpected arrival of a newborn can cause a tremendous amount of stress if the household cannot survive on the salary of the husband alone. Perhaps the wife can supplement the lost income by establishing a home based business? The couple could barter for various services to cut down on expenses.

Establish a budget

Today we live in a material oriented society. We must consult the Lord for direction. He has promised to supply all of our needs according to His riches. We must learn to responsibly become prudent in our financial dealings. It is my recommendation that the couple establish a budget. The budget should include the following:

Tithes or contributions to the furtherance of the Lord’s Kingdom


Residence insurance


Outstanding debt


Insurance (life, health, auto etc.)

Entertainment, recreation

Clothing Allowance




The couple should begin by monitoring their current spending habits for approximately (30) thirty days to attain an accurate accounting of their current spending patterns. Housing should be approximately 30% of the income, food approximately 15% etc. If you have established a pattern of living on credit make it a goal towards diminishing your over all liabilities.

When preparing your budget keep it realistic. The pressures of debt can tremendously impact the stability of your impending marriage. Many marriages buckle under excessive financial pressures. When you commence to monitor your spending habits see if you buy on impulse? Do you plan for your purchases? Do you need what you really purchased on credit? Have you considered layaway? Don’t allow your possessions possess you. God has promised to “supply all of our needs according to His riches in glory through Christ Jesus!” Philippians 4: 19. We must learn to TRUST GOD.

When a couple adheres to their budget they are implementing good stewardship. This discipline will subsequently transfer to other areas of the relationship. Take a personal inventory of your current liabilities. What are your current mortgage, rent automobile loans, student loans, clothing, etc?

How will they impede on your relationship financially? Be honest with yourself. Are you financially ready for marriage? Remember excessive debt is often a crucial factor that greatly impacts a relationship. Make a conscious effort to break any financial misconduct patterns that have been established. Always work together for the good of the marriage. Remember to prepare for unexpected emergencies. I encourage minimal use of credit cards.



Many couples never discuss the area of where do we worship before the ceremony. This subject must be approached. Often times it is an assumption that the wife automatically joins the husband’s church. This is quite all right if the couple is in agreement. But what if the wife is not comfortable with the husband’s church? Or the reverse is true? The important question to ask is where can the couple benefit spiritually? Where can they as a couple spiritually grow together and work together?

In Effective Biblical Counseling written by Larry Crabb Jr., he states; “The local church should and can assume responsibility for restoring distressed people suffering from personal ineffectiveness, to full productive, joyful lives.

In order to do so it must develop its unique resources for counseling.” ( 1977, pg.190) I agree with Crabb’s perspective; the church should definitely be a sound resource that encourages the development of spiritual maturity.

The spiritual, biblical foundational strength of the church should be a determining factor. Does the church implement what it teaches? Does the Pastor adhere to what he or she teaches? Is it God – centered? Is the Word of God taught? Is He or she objective? "Together" the couple should pray and seek God’s direction and patiently await the prompting of the Holy Spirit.

Where we receive our spiritual food is important, as well as our home personal, Bible study. A family that prays together does stay together when they follow God’s leadership. Couples often decide to attend separate churches. It is my recommendation that much prayer, thought and discussion is given to the matter. My recommendation is that they possibly strive to find a church that meets their needs as a couple. God’s direction is crucial in determining “where do we worship!”


© 2010 Elder DeBorrah K Ogans


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