Are you and your spouse more like roommates than lovers? Are you living disconnected and just passing each other by? When was the last time you enjoyed spending time with your spouse talking and dreaming? It is important that we are best friends with our spouses and that we both can count on having each other’s back.
My Spouse is My Best Friend and We Make Decisions Together
I live minutes from the best mountain trails and flowing rivers in Montana. Everything you picture when you think of Montana is right outside my door. A few years back we got wind of a new spot people were tubing down the river. After loading up and driving a ways out of town, we were ready to get in. We ignored that it was too early in the season to be on the water. We ignored the fact that the water was moving faster than we had ever seen. We ignored that no one else was getting in on tubes. We also ignored that those braving the waters were in white water rafts, with oars and life jackets. None of which we had.
My Spouse is My Best Friend and We Do Fun Things Together
We got in the river and it wasn’t long before I recognized this was a mistake. We were flying down the river so fast and just getting assaulted by the rapids and the rocks. My tube was tied to Ben’s, which resulted in us being whipped in all directions as our tubes jolted an pulled at every rise and fall of the river. We decided it was best to untie the tubes so we could regain some control. I watched as Ben caught a current and sped ahead of me despite his efforts to stay with me. By this point, I was over it to say the least. I was unable to reach the water with my feet and was barely able to submerge my hands. Steering and paddling was not an option. I was completely out of control. This beating continued for approximately 2 hours as a ran down the unforgiving river. Finally, I spotted the area where we could get out. I hollered ahead to Ben to confirm if that was the right spot. He yelled back conformation and fought his tube over to shore. I was a ways behind him, still screaming along the surface. It was then my tube caught a current that sent me toward the opposite side the river. I flew right by where I was supposed to get out.
My Spouse is My Best Friend and We Care About Each Other’s Safety
I had no idea what the river ahead held since we had only scouted up to the area we would get out. It wasn’t long before panic set it. I tried everything I could to steer my tube and begin making for shore. It was no use. I was uncontrollably floating down this rushing river. I yelled at Ben that I couldn’t get there. He yelled back to abandon the tube and swim to shore.
My Spouse is My Best Friend and We Weather the Storm Together
I jumped out of the tube. The river carried me further down still. My hands were full with our bag, cell phones, and car keys that I was trying to keep above the water, along with myself. This made it virtually impossible to swim. I was completely helpless at this point and panic set in. I had no idea how I was going to get out of this river. Following the panic was a complete emotional breakdown. Ben recognized I was in a panic. He dove into the river and eventually caught up to me. In lifeguard fashion, Ben drug me to the shore fighting the current, rocks, rapids, along with me. I had completely shut down. Everything went black for me. It was not until I was clawing up the forest’s edge and the rivers steep bank on my hands and knees that anything came back.
My Spouse is My Best Friend and My Hero
When I had completely given up, he had my back. Ben saved my life that day.
It is quite easy to lose friendship in a marriage. Life distracts and schedules separate us from our spouse. We cannot let ourselves forget that they have struggles as well and we all need to know we have each others’ backs. Let’s unpack this passage as it relates to friendship in marriage:
Two are better than one, because they have a good reward for their toil. For if they fall, one will lift up his fellow. But woe to him who is alone when he falls and has not another to lift him up! Again, if two lie together, they keep warm, but how can one keep warm alone? And though a man might prevail against one who is alone, two will withstand him—a threefold cord is not quickly broken.
As mentioned before, Solomon was the wisest King to ever rule in Jerusalem. He sought knowledge from God to be able to properly govern his kingdom and was given divine wisdom as well as riches that were unmatched. In this wisdom and luxury, he still was not satisfied. The purpose of this book was Solomon’s plea to all that life without God in it makes no sense and is completely worthless. All the riches, he found, did not satisfy him. He had it all, had seen it all, had lived it all and, in approaching the end of his life, when this book was written, he was left with the conclusion that all of it was vanity, or worthless. Only a relationship with God mattered. It is easy to see why he focused this portion of his wisdom literature on the importance of friendship. We have all heard it said that some of the greatest things in life cannot be bought, like that of friendship within our marriage.
“Two are better than one, because they have a good reward for their toil.”
How much more can two accomplish over one? I would safely say, twice as much 🙂 Right?! Toil in this context is not only referring to work as in physical labor but also toil as in burdens, weariness, trouble, or sorrow. It is so much easier to face life’s struggle when you have someone who will come alongside you and help you. There is much relief or reward not only in accomplishing tasks and having life success together, but also in having some one help carry the weight of it all.
“For if they fall, one will lift up his fellow.”
The word lift here implies not only a physical lifting as in one has stumbled and fallen but also in the figurative sense. They need to be held and comforted. Their spirit lifted up. When they share a struggle with us, it cannot become about us and our reaction to it. Side note, I share with you what the Lord has convicted within me as well. And, boy, have I struggled with this. Ever heard from your spouse, “this is why I didn’t tell you because I knew you would react like this?” I sure have. It is a challenge to set aside my reaction to what he is going through and be there for him.
“But woe to him who is alone when he falls and has not another to lift him up!”
This passage is not condemning the single lady or gentleman. So please do not read that into the text. It actually is referring to the person who has no one in their life to help them up, in friendship. In marriage, this is saying how sad it is and how much grief there will be when one person is struggling and their spouse is not there for them. This may be caused my a myriad of things. Whatever the division is, whether relational or not, the burden of life is harder to bear when one experiences it alone.
“Again, if two lie together, they keep warm, but how can one keep warm alone?”
In context, this verse is referencing being alone at night and sleeping out in the cold, before there was heat and electricity. It is a challenge in that scenario to stay warm at night. I believe this relates to us in our marriages today by keeping sexual intimacy a priority. There is warmth in the embrace of our spouse. The intimacy fire can only stay lit by adding logs to it regularly.
“And though a man might prevail against one who is alone, two will withstand him—a threefold cord is not quickly broken.”
Finally, two withstanding one who is strong and trying to overtake one of you can quickly be subdued by the power of the both of you. To drive the point home further, Solomon gives the analogy of a 3 strand cord being really strong in comparison to a single strand. We have the ability to protect each other.
How do we become best friends with our spouse?
1. Be in the know
We need to know what is going on with our spouse and in their life, work, emotions, thoughts, and spirit so we can support them.
2. Encourage and build each other up
We need to encourage and lift up each other. When one is facing a serious concern they need to know they can be open with us and not be punished. In addition, they need a listening ear not a solution. Hear them out, comfort them, and encourage them. Sometimes all we need to hear is that everything will be ok.
3. Be available for your spouse
When our spouse is struggling we need to be there for them, in their presence, face to face. Touch base with your spouse regularly and open up opportunities for them to share with you. Let them know you are there for them no matter what. Even when the problem they are having is you.
4. Lie down with each other
Make intimacy a priority, emotional and sexual. Talk together and touch together often, at minimum daily. Kiss each other.
5. Watch out for the well being of your spouse
We need to protect each other. Be honest and gentle telling with your spouse when what they are going to do doesn’t feel right to you or doesn’t make sense. Do not let them fall. Should they fall, do not tell them I told you so.
Jesus is the Ultimate Best Friend
There are many spiritual principles in this passage as well. We are never alone. God promises never to leave us or forsake us. Jesus fights our battles for us and with us. We have so much comfort knowing that the God who created us loves us so much that he made sure we could spend eternity with him; and this is through Jesus. Jesus took the weight of the sins of the world upon him and died a horrible death so that we did not have to take on that punishment ourselves. He defeated death by rising from the dead and he is still alive today sitting on the throne of heaven. If you believe in your heart, confess, and call on the name of the Lord you will be saved and not even death will separate you from God. It is my prayer that you accept this free gift of grace and secure your eternity in heaven. Where there will be no pain and no tears forevermore! AMEN.
We hope that this helps you find friendship with your spouse again or for the first time.
Begin today with this guide to help you and your spouse become best friends. Included: discussion guide and action plan.
Couple’s Guide HERE:
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How do you and your spouse share friendship together?
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