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February 22nd, 2024

5 Tips for Smoother Sailing in Your Marriage


Marriage Takes Us Away

I so enjoy cruises.  See, once you’ve made the decision to climb aboard a cruise ship, there is nothing left to do but enjoy the benefits of your well-planned vacation.

But, I’ll admit it. Some of my cruising experiences have been less than perfect. However, those bad experiences didn’t stop me from getting on the next ship.

Doesn’t that remind you of relationSHIPS? We don’t give up on our relationSHIPS because of bad experiences or memories from past “ships”.

How many of us are jumping ship every time the journey is less than perfect – according to our standards and demands?

We must allow God to work it ALL for our good!

Life Lessons While Cruising

marriageThe first cruise I ever took was a day trip (small ferry boat) from the Florida coast over to the Bahamas.  At that time, I realized I did not have the stomach to deal with the rocking of the boat.  Nauseated and dizzy for the entire ride, I vowed to never get on a boat again.

God was teaching me something about myself that day.  I was the person who would turn around mid-voyage, even if where God told me to go was through choppy waters. I wanted calm seas every day of my life, but God reminded me that I was not exempt from the storms and the rain. So, I needed to learn how to keep it together and stomach uncomfortable situations.

My second cruise took place on a simple dinner cruise boat.  I went for a bigger boat this time and a little further out to sea. I was much more confident and prepared for what was to come – or so I thought.

Ultimately, a fight broke out between a few travelers who had too many happy hour drinks. Needless to say, I was livid. I had allowed their situation to disturb my peace. I wanted my way, which meant that everyone should behave according to my standards.

During this experience, God was teaching me to be tolerant and non-judgmental of people who didn’t act or experience life just like me.

Experience Builds Your Hope in God

I have been on more than 10 cruises now. Needless to say, I’ve learned a lot of lessons, including the need to put my hope for a great travel plan, safety, and joy in God’s hands. That’s what experience does. As we’re patient with our process, experience builds hope that leads to confidence in Christ (Romans 5:4-5 KJV).

How does this apply to relationSHIPS?  We all want to travel through life with a great partner – safely and with joy. No one wants their relationSHIP to be overtaken by the waves of life and capsized.

So, here are 5 tips to ensure peace, safety, and joy in your relationship – with Jesus as your Captain:

1. Allow God to Choose Your Time and Seat at the Captain’s Dinner

Accept God’s timing for when He allows your blessings to be served and who He chooses to be present doing this time.

2. Enjoy God’s Travel Plans for You

Realize that purpose in relationSHIPs is personal. Everyone is not on the “ship” for the same reasons. Don’t lose your purpose being busy watching and emulating the habits of others. Do what is required to keep your relationSHIP heading in the right direction.

3. Know That the Boat Will Rock

When life with your spouse gets rocky, move up to higher levels in your faith and prayer life so you won’t be so distracted. Don’t get stuck living low or thinking low – beneath the greatness where God has called you. God will be your shield against any motion sickness (Psalm 91:4).

4. Put on Your Life Jacket (The Holy Spirit)

When every report says you’re about to sink, the Holy Spirit will not only keep you afloat, but He will lead you into the real truth (John 16:13).  Your relationSHIP will not survive without the assistance of a life jacket.

5. Keep Your Hands off the Helm

Let God be God and keep the relationSHIP steering at the appropriate angles according to the conditions He sees up ahead.

So, What’s the Play Call?

Plan your life journey with God as the Captain of your RelationSHIP, making sure everyone in your cabin wants to be onboard on the journey to destiny.

Updated September 2018

Cortne Smith
Cortne Smith is the Founder of Relationship Service Station, providing full & self-service programs to promote whole and healthy relationships, with a signature program geared to equip the widow/widower to move from PAIN to PEACE. She uses her written and verbal voice to bring marriages back into God’s covenant.


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6 years ago

You are so right that we aren’t exempt from the storms and the rain, but we have to learn how to sail through it. We don’t have to get paralyzed and stop in the middle of the rough seas. We can reach out to Jesus and our partner, and walk over the whirling waves beneath us. Thanks for the reminder!

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