1. Make your relationship with God number one. Really. Draw closer to God. He is the best husband you could ever have. He is the only one who has true unconditional love for you. He always expects the best from you. He always pays attention to you. His thoughts are always toward you. Go to Him to get your needs met. Your need for affirmation, for unconditional love, even affection. Your husband can’t meet these needs. If you put your husband in this place, he will fail you, and really you are making an idol of him. God always treats you with love. God loves you with 1 Corinthians 13 kind of love: He knows your heart and your motives. He expects the best from you and doesn’t assume the worst about you. He is never rude to you. He is never mean or harsh or moody. He always pays attention to you. You are always on His mind! He delights in you!
2. Deal with problems from the past. Deal with your own brokenness – mindsets, wounds from the family you were raised in, generational sins and patterns, thought patterns and behaviors. Ask God to show you wrong beliefs about yourself and about God. Break agreements with the enemy and the thoughts he puts in your mind. Ask the Lord, “Where is the brokenness? Where is the healing to be found?” When you find something like an attitude of self-hatred or inferiority or fear or anger that is constantly present in the way you think, there is probably a stronghold that needs to be broken. There is a 3-step process to breaking a stronghold in your life.
3) Come out of agreement
Then command these spirits by their name, such as spirit of self-hatred, to “Go, in Jesus’ name!”
3. Change the way you relate. We are here to learn how to love. God uses marriage to transform us. Here’s a quote from Love & War:
“We are, all of us, utterly committed and deeply devoted to our “style,” our “way,” our “approach to life”. We have absolutely no intention of giving it up. Not even for love. So God creates an environment where we have to. It’s called marriage.”
We all have to face our style of relating and see where we need to change.
Women must usually face where we are controlling and manipulative and where we are desperately clingy and needy.
Men usually have to face where they are passive and where they are domineering, harsh or violent.
4. Change your way of communicating. There are four basic ways of communicating.
Passive Communication – Core belief: “You matter and I don’t.” It is based on self-protection. These people react out of fear of the other person’s anger or disapproval. They act like they have no needs.
Aggressive Communication – Core belief: “I matter. You don’t.” This is motivated by fear and selfishness. He will get what he needs by taking it.
Passive-aggressive Communication – Core belief: “You matter… No, not really!” They manipulate and control others through active deceit and subtle-but-deadly forms of punishment. They use sarcasm, veiled threats, manipulative use of Scriptures, judgments in the form of counsel, and withholding love.
Assertive Communication – Core belief: “You matter and so do I.” This is the best kind of communication. It is based on honor and respect. These people refuse to have relationships or conversations where both people do not have a high, equal value.
An important point to remember about communication is that the first goal of communication is understanding, not agreement.
5. Do spiritual warfare. Break agreements with the enemy when he tries to get you to think negatively about your spouse. Recognize and identify the attacks of the enemy against your marriage, your mate and yourself. Pray for wisdom about how to deal with the attacks. Take negative thoughts captive and throw them out. Bind the works of the enemy. Pray together as a couple and do spiritual warfare together. Help your mate fight the attacks against their mind. Bring to light what is happening so they will realize that they are under attack, then stand strong with them against the enemy and in the name of Jesus, make him flee!
If you want to go into more depth on these topics, I recommend that you read:
Love & War: Finding the Marriage You’ve Dreamed Of by John and Stasi Eldredge
Keep Your Love On by Danny Silk