Marriage and Parenting

Have you ever wanted to throw your hands in the air, and say, “Lord, I can’t do this!”  If you have, join the thousands of others of us who have said similar words.  Being a wife and a mother isn’t for sissys!  I know!  I’ve been married for over 41 years to the love of my life, Keith. We are blessed with two adult children, Taylor and daughter-in-law Ali and Lauren and son-in-law Chris along with four precious grandchildren, and Abby our lab.  God has taught me a lot from all of them!

Being a godly wife and mother takes firm resolve, a commitment to the Lord, and an openness to learn His ways. The fact that you’re here shows that you have all three!  For additional help and insights on marriage and parenting, check out my two resources: The Plan A Woman in a Plan B World and The Plan A MOM in a Plan B World. Also, visit The MOM Initiative, where I’ve joined a team of dedicated moms who are passionate about mentoring and encouraging YOU! 

Father, I pray you bless each person who visits this web site. Fill them with the knowledge of Your will so they can walk in Your ways. Fill them with Your love so it spills over into their families. Surprise them with joy as they pray and see Your handiwork in their lives.  Give them patience and a forgiving spirit, as You extend patience and forgiveness toward them. In Jesus’ name, Amen.  

Below, you’ll find 26 Keys to Having an Extraordinary Marriage and 26 Tips for Parents. Let me know how they work for you! In His Joy, Debbie

26 Keys to Having An Extraordinary Christian Marriage

by Debbie Taylor Williams

  1. Marry a Christian. 2 Cor 6:14-15
  2. Be filled with and walk by the Spirit. Eph 5:18, Gal 5:24-25
  3. Love one another.  1 Corinthians 13
  4. Be subject to one another in the fear of Christ.  Col 3:18, Eph 5:18, 21
  5. Find your worth and identity in Christ and His love for you.  He is your bridegroom!  Matthew 9:15, Rev 19:7
  6. Wives, respect your husband.  Eph 5:33  Husbands, love your wife as Christ loves the church.  Eph 5:25
  7. Pray together. Matthew 18:20
  8. Be angry, but do not sin.  Don’t let the sun go down on your anger. Don’t give the devil an opportunity.  Ephesians 4:26-27
  9. Follow Biblical principles when wrongs are done. Matthew 18:15
  10. Forgive.  Don’t keep an account of wrongs done. Matthew 18:21-22, Prov19:11
  11. Speak the truth in love, with grace. Ephesians 5:28
  12. Be kind to one another. Ephesians 4:32 Husbands, open your wife’s door. Wives, thank him for the small things he does. Express appreciation for each other. Participate in each other’s interests occasionally to show them you care. Treat your spouse the way you want him to treat you. Lk 6:31-33, Mt 5:46
  13. Turn criticisms into matters of prayer.  Matthew 7:3-5
  14. Ask your spouse about their day, what you can do for them, or how you can pray for them; even as Jesus asked.  Mark 10:46
  15. Rekindle your passion. Hold that kiss with your spouse! Kiss often: when you leave, when you come home, when you say hi. Kissing is a demonstration of love and care.  Luke 7:38, 15:20, Acts 20:37, 1 Thessalonians 5:26
  16. Don’t deny each other sexually. Respect each other’s needs. 1 Corinthians 7:5
  17. Laugh together. Ecclesiastes 3:4
  18. Eat together. It is a time and sign of fellowship. Share food, conversation, and hearts as Jesus did over meals. Luke 22:11, John 6:54, Luke 24:41, John 21:9-10
  19. Recognize that marriage is work. Keep your eyes on the joy before you. Hebrews 12:2
  20. Don’t covet another’s person’s spouse. Hold the marriage bed in honor. Hebrews 13:4. Don’t look at other marriages as the grass being greener on the other side. Water and fertilize your own yard. Plant seeds of kindness. Remove weeds of bitterness and boulders of resentment. Fence in your backyard to protect it from unwanted vandals. Sit on the porch and watch the sun set. Take walks together.  Ex 20:17
  21. If you’re angry and have constructive criticism, say it at the right time, not when you’re upset.  Prov 15:1
  22. Keep physically fit. Your body is his. His is yours. Encourage and model fitness by what you cook, eat, exercise, and sleep. 1 Cor 6:19-20
  23. Give your spouse a break. No one’s perfect. Give yourself a break. You’re not perfect. Rom 3:23
  24. Never use the “D”(divorce) word. Remove it as an option unless you are in harm’s way. Matthew 19:4
  25. Never leave one another without saying, “I love you.” 1 John 4:11, 19-21
  26. Be harmonious, sympathetic, brotherly, kindhearted, and humble in spirit; not returning evil for evil or insult for insult, but giving a blessing instead. 1 Peter 3:8-9

26 Keys for Christian Parenting

by Debbie Taylor Williams

  1. Love your children. 1 Corinthians 13 Be filled with and walk by the Spirit. Eph 5:18, Gal 5:24-25
  2. Model how you want your children to act and speak
  3. Don’t argue in front of your children unless you want your children to have a tumultuous marriage.
  4. Be the kind of spouse you hope your child marries. If you want your son to marry a nagging, critical, unhappy woman…be one. If you want your son to marry a kind woman who will encourage him, be one.
  5. Eat together.
  6. Pray before meals. Not because you’re supposed to. Because you want to.
  7. Ask your children how you can pray for them.
  8. Set boundaries. Make consequences and rewards clear
  9. Look in your child’s eyes when you talk to them, when you correct them.
  10. Tell your children you love them in the mornings, at night, in between.
  11. Laugh with your children. Get on the floor and play with them.
  12. Let them do things you don’t necessarily have an interest in. Sports, music, books.
  13. Be willing to invest financially in their development.
  14. Talk to them. Ask questions.
  15. Teach them how to clean the bathroom, sweep, mop, dust, change the sheets.
  16. Catch them when they’re doing something good. Give sincere compliments.
  17. Wait up for your teens or have them wake you when they get home. Ask them about their evening, but don’t drill them. Simply be available if they want to talk.
  18. Be consistent.
  19. Model good health, sleeping, eating, and exercise.                                                          
  20. Say, “I’m sorry” when you’ve messed up.
  21. Greet your children with a hug and give them a hug good bye.
  22. Never leave one another without the last words being, “I love you.”
  23. Take your children to church. Don’t make it optional. Start when they’re babies. Don’t be legalistic, but be consistent.
  24. Teach your children Biblical principles. Model the principles you’re teaching them.
  25. Teach your children to serve others, but don’t force your children to have your gifts.
  26. Major in the majors, minor in the minors. Don’t sweat the small stuff.