marriage retreat

Many couples say, "We struggle to make God a part of our marriage."  Paul Stevens, in his book Marriage Spirituality, mentions several barriers to adding God to our marriage:

1. Marriage has too many agendas (bills, raising kids, vacations, jobs, taking garbage out) – how is there time to pray together?
2. Married couples suffer from over-familiarity (e.g. Your spouse sees your underwear on the floor) – how can you inspire each other spiritually?
3. Married couples have a history of mutual sin and forgiveness (Spouses have seen each other’s bad sides during their years together) – how can "sinners" be spiritual friends?
4. Married couples have unresolved problems (sexual frustrations, spends too much money, handling situations differently, etc) – how can we grow spiritually when we’ve got so many issues?
5. Married couples are often afraid of intimacy (eg. fearful of the heart-to-heart conversations) – how can a couple grow together with God when they aren’t being transparent with one another?
6. Marriage has a complicated structure (who’s in charge, who does what) – how can we grow spiritually when we’re confused about our marital roles as husband and wife?

Any thoughts out there?  I’m leading a marriage retreat this weekend for 15 young couples from our church.  We’re headed out to the Rockies (thanks Kelsey for staying with our kids!) for a getaway retreat.  Each couple is going just to play and pray together.  We’re also going to spend time looking at the ways prayer, conversation and rest will enhance our marriages (the first three chapters of Stevens’ book).  Would appreciate your prayers for all of us!

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