Hello everyone!

Natasha and I will celebrate twenty-four years of marriage on June 5th. Over the years we have learned, first hand, that blossoming relationships never just happen. In fact, we have discovered that couples with flourishing relationships never leave things to chance, but rather they tend to be proactive in their quest for wedding bliss. Today, I want to share three basic habits of healthy relationships.

1. Healthy couples make spending quality time together a priority! We should always strive to give each other our best and never our leftovers. The Bible says in Genesis 2:24, "Therefore shall a man leave his father and his mother, and shall cleave unto his wife, and they shall be one flesh." In this scripture, cleave means, "cling or stick to." In other words, it suggests having a strong bond or sticking together like glue. We cannot cultivate a strong bond with our spouse, without intentionally spending meaningful time together. Never allow the busyness of life to become a distraction from developing a healthy marriage.

2. Healthy couples laugh together often! Proverbs 17:22 states, "A cheerful heart is good medicine, but a crushed spirit dries up the bones." When your emotional state is weak, there is a healing that takes place through laughter. Playtime isn’t just for children. As adults, we don’t have to be super serious all the time. Healthy couples spend time laughing and having fun together. Never allow the sobering responsibility of managing your household to rob you of your inner child. Laughter is good medicine!

3. Healthy couples accept that their spouse has imperfections! James 3:2 says it best, "We all stumble in many ways…" Neither you, nor your spouse is perfect. You will both make plenty of mistakes over the duration of your marriage. When a mistake is made, quickly admit it, ask for forgiveness, and make amends or necessary adjustments then simply move on! Both the offended and the offender need to leave the conversation feeling heard and understood. No one wants to feel like their issues are constantly being pushed under the rug or ignored. A realization that there are no perfect marriages can go a long way in establishing a healthy relationship.

Healthy relationships don’t just happen. Couples have to be proactive in their pursuit of a thriving marriage. We have to be willing to spend quality time together, laugh often, and accept each other’s imperfections. I want to leave you with the words found in Mark 10:9, "Therefore what God has joined together, let no one separate." Blessings!!!

Pastor Cornell Maltbia is senior pastor at True Holiness Saints Center in Conway. He serves on various nonprofit boards throughout his tenure of community service. For more information or to contact Maltbia, log onto trueholiness.net.