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3 Christlike Attributes That Will Help Strengthen Your Marriage

By Mormon.org
Couple eating ice cream cones

It Starts with Love

Every marriage takes work. Every great marriage takes a great deal of work. The good news is that we don’t have to be perfect to have a great marriage. Elder Dallin H. Oaks teaches: “A good marriage does not require a perfect man or a perfect woman. It only requires a man and a woman committed to strive together toward perfection.” But how do we strive together toward perfection? Of course, it all starts with love.

Watch this short video message about expressions of love in marriage.

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We can show our love in our marriages by following the perfect example of Jesus Christ. If you would like to strengthen your marriage, start with these three Christlike attributes today.

Forgiveness

During His mortal ministry, Jesus Christ offered forgiveness, both to those who came seeking as well as to those who did not. Of the woman, a sinner, who bathed His feet with her tears, He said, “Her sins, which are many, are forgiven; for she loved much” (Luke 7:47). But for the Roman soldiers who wrongfully abused Him, He also prayed, “Father, forgive them; for they know not what they do” (Luke 23:34).

In a marriage of two imperfect people, mistakes happen, hurtful words are sometimes spoken, and feelings are occasionally bruised. When the Savior counsels us to forgive others “seventy times seven” (see Matthew 18:22), He isn’t suggesting a tally sheet of forgiveness. Rather, He is teaching that to truly love as He loves, we have to forgive.

Patience

Though perfect, Jesus Christ made allowances for the imperfect people around Him. To Peter, still learning at the Last Supper, the Savior patiently taught of service, sacrifice, and steadfastness (see John 13). And as the risen Messiah, Christ allowed a multitude to come forth, “one by one until they had all gone forth” to see with their own eyes and touch with their own hands and know with their own hearts that He had been resurrected (3 Nephi 11:15).

Little things can become big things in marriages where patience is forgotten. So let go of the little things and be patient with the big things. We are all on that road to perfection, but we all fall short. So patiently love and support your spouse as you both try a little harder to improve each day.

Selflessness

Above all, the Savior personified selflessness. He lived His life for others and ultimately gave His life in a selfless act of love. In marriage, selflessness does not mean giving up who you are. It means giving everything you are to someone else—your whole heart, your whole mind, and your whole strength. By loving and serving your spouse selflessly, your love will increase and your marriage will be stronger.

Do you want to learn about more Christlike attributes that can strengthen your marriage? Chat with a Mormon online today.