“Train up a child in the way he should go: and when he is old, he will not depart from it.” Proverbs 22:6
To train means “to narrow,” conveying the thought of marking a clear path for our children by removing the unnecessary and focusing on that of lasting value—setting biblical boundaries (Proverbs 13:6). Many parents unwisely encourage their children to experiment with various philosophies of life. We should spend more time teaching our children the truth instead.
Here are some ways to help you prepare your children for marriage:
1. Ask God Daily for Wisdom and Strength
“If any of you lack wisdom, let him ask of God” James 1:5a (see also Esther 2:11 and Job 1:5).
2. Pray Consistently for Their Future Spouses
- Development of Christ-like character (Philippians 2:5)
- Respect for authority, etc.
3. Teach Them Early on God’s Plan for Their Lives
God’s blueprint for building a strong family is found in His Word (Ephesians 5:18–6:4).
Remind them often that they will get married and raise a godly family of their own someday (Malachi 2:15; Proverbs 31:1; 1 Thessalonians 4:1–8).
4. Help Them Develop a Servant’s Heart
Teach them to marry for what they can give, not get. This is only possible as they die to self and are filled with (controlled by) the Holy Spirit.
Marriage brings many responsibilities. Your children will have to be mature and settle in—“leave and cleave.”
Marriage is a life-long commitment to God and one another (Matthew 19:6).
5. Uphold the Standard of Purity in the Home
The parent’s job is to guard the hearts and minds of their children until they are old enough to do it for themselves. You must help your children be “simple concerning evil” (Romans 16:19).
Tell your children the greatest gift they can give their spouses is themselves and it is important that they stay pure in heart, mind, and body so that they can give all of themselves to their future spouses.
6. Show Them How to Walk With God
You cannot impart what you do not possess. In order to effectively teach your children to walk with God, you must consecrate yourself to God and be yielded to His will.
- Daily prayer and Bible reading
- Abiding in Christ
- Developing a heart and mind of discernment (1 John 4:1)
- Good steward of time, talent, and treasure (Romans 12:1–2)
7. Remind Them to Wait on God’s Timing
- Right one, right way, right time—no unequal yokes (2 Corinthians 6:14)
- “If in doubt, don’t”—“Don’t settle for second best”
- Parents approval of future spouse with insight and counsel of your pastor
8. Help Them Plan a Truly Christian Marriage
- Pre-marital counseling
- Christ-honoring ceremony
Establishment of a Christian home that pleases God in all areas—i.e. faithful church attendance, family altar, Christian service, financial stewardship, child-rearing, etc.