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Spiritual Practices and Devotional Resources for Couples

Shared spiritual practices strengthen marriages as well as faith.

While churches are quick to encourage at-home devotions for families with children, they sometimes overlook the couples within the congregation. Couples who together pray at home, participate in worship at church and take part in mission are more engaged and active in the church.

Subsequently, couples who make a daily habit of sharing spiritual moments deepen their understanding of God and each other. Walking together in faith helps spouses focus on living their values.

Encourage the couples in your congregation to set aside time for regular at-home devotions. It can be as simple as joining hands across the dinner table to say a silent or spoken prayer of thanks or nighttime Bible reading. Whatever the chosen practice, it has the power to have a cascading positive effect in the family and its future generations, your congregation and community.

Devotional Resources Recommended by United Methodists

  • 15-Minute Devotions for Couples by Bob and Emilie Barnes (Eugene, Oregon: Harvest House Publishers, 2005). Brief selections offer Scripture passages, related devotional reading and suggestions for activities to strengthen couple communication and intimacy.
  • 365 Meditations for Couples edited by Sally D. Sharpe (Nashville: Dimensions for Living, 2003). Daily selections offer scripture, a brief meditation, prayer and Talk it Over”topics for couples. Each month’s selection is written by a different couple.
  • Couples’ Devotional Bible: New International Version (Grand Rapids, Michigan: Zondervan Publishing House, 2009). In addition to the complete text of the Bible, this volume offers helpful introductions to each book, daily devotions with marriage builder activities and other aids for exploring various areas of your marriage. An index helps locate devotional readings on specific topics with which couples might need assistance.
  • Holy Relationships by Christine A. Adams (Harrisburg, Pennsylvania: Morehouse Publishing, 1998). Approximately 85 brief paragraphs and scripture passages for daily readings are grouped in three sections of this book: Guidelines for Holy Relationships, Practices of Holy Relationships and Purposes of Holy Relationships. Topics include forgiveness, feelings, autonomy, listening, faith, developing rituals, affirming your love and more.
  • Moments with You: Daily Connections for Couples by Dennis and Barbara Rainey (Ventura, California: Regal Books, 2007). The authors offer 365 brief biblical devotions for couples to share, each including a daily discussion point, Scripture and prayer. The readings, appropriate for all ages and stages of married life, are designed to help couples deepen their connection to God and each other.
  • Staying Connected in Your Marriage: Daily Reflections and Dialogue by Al Francis Lacki (Troy, Michigan: Uplift Enterprises, 2000). Designed to foster both individual and relationship growth, these daily selections are designed for individual reading and reflection, followed by couple dialogue and sharing.
  • The Couples Companion: Meditations and Exercises for Getting the Love You Want by Harville Hendrix, Ph.D. and Helen Hunt, M.A. (New York: Simon & Schuster, Inc., 1994). Each of these 365 entries for cultivating spirituality in the marriage relationship begins with a quotation, offers insights, suggests an action and ends with a faith affirmation. Content is compatible with Christian tradition and useful for couples of any faith.
  • The Love and Respect Experience: A Husband-Friendly Devotional That Wives Truly Love by Emerson Eggerichs (Nashville: Tennessee: Thomas Nelson Publishers, 2011). Based on his biblically-based understanding of the love desired by women and the respect needed by men, the author offers 52 devotionals designed to help couples learn how to stop and avoid the crazy cycle and enhance their efforts to show love and respect to each other.
  • The Love Languages Devotional Bible by Gary Chapman (Chicago: Moody Publishers, 2012) The author brings together his expertise and insights from decades of counseling experience in brief devotional readings applying Scripture to real-life relationship issues. Designed to deepen couples’ understanding of God and of each other, this resource addresses such topics as expectations, communication, roles, sex, conflict, money, in-laws, children and more. Available in either hard or soft cover. A Spanish language version titled Biblia Devocional Los Lenguajes del Amor is scheduled for publication in April 2013, by Kregel Publications.
  • Together Moments for Couples: Devotions to Draw You Closer by Bob and Emilie Barnes (Eugene, Oregon: Harvest House Publishers, 2011). These devotionals are designed to help busy couples spend quality moments together focused on God and each other. The readings offer encouragement, inspiration and practical advice to deepen the couple’s love and commitment to each other.