The Couple That Prays Together ...

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The Couple That Prays Together ... [EXPERT]
How shared spirituality can help strengthen your relationship.

Spirituality has been linked to mental health by a number of studies including one from the University of Missouri.

While this study focused on how spirituality was linked to individual mental health, increased spirituality also helps in the area of forgiveness in couples. The capacity for forgiveness is also important in a couple's relationship.

There are a number of ways that couples can increase the role of spirituality in their relationships, one of which is prayer. Depending on their own spiritual and religious backgrounds, there are different ways that couples may want to incorporate prayer into their relationships. ob815

Couples that come from very different spiritual/religious backgrounds may want to try the following:

  1. Talk. Set aside time to talk with each other about your respective prayer lives.
  2. Try. Adopt a "discipline of small moments" where you recognize the small things in life that you can both pray for in your own ways.
  3. Develop. Develop your own family traditions that allow you to mark a particular time or event in a way that does not go against either of your faith traditions.
  4. Be careful. Be especially careful about use of language that may exclude either of the traditions.

Couples that have similar spiritual/religious backgrounds but do not practice a common faith may want to consider trying putting these ideas into practice:

  1. Join in. Make a point to participate in your partner's community of faith on a regular basis. This does not need to be frequent but could include special days and periodic regular days.
  2. Pray at home. Include daily opportunities for prayer around the home.
  3. Discuss your traditions. Talk about the similarities and differences in the ways that you pray in your traditions. Clearly acknowledge the commonalities to your traditions, including the focus of your prayers and your understanding of what occurs in prayer.

More couple's advice from YourTango Experts:

Article contributed by
Advanced Member

The Rev. Christopher L. Smith

Marriage and Family Therapist

The Rev. Christopher L. Smith, LCAC, LMHC, LMFT has served as a national leader around mental health issues both within the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.) and in professional counseling organizations.  He works directly with individuals, couples, families and supervisees as the Clinical Director of Seeking Shalom in New York City.  He also brings his insight to help a wider audience through writing, speaking and consultations.

Location: New York, NY
Credentials: LAC, LMFT, LMHC, MDiv
Specialties: Couples/Marital Issues, Forgiveness, Spiritual
Other Articles/News by The Rev. Christopher L. Smith:

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