You don't need to prepare for marriage

You Don’t Need to Prepare For Marriage

Yes. I typed that.

Have you ever met a woman who treats her children like eggs that might break at the slightest hit?

Or a man who treats his wife like a fragile delivery but can become physically violent with other women?

Or worse still, I’m sure you’ve met children who fear their parents but can verbally abuse other elderly people outside their homes.

Can you guess what the problem is in each of those scenarios?

Your answer is the reason you should not prepare for marriage.


Of course, you know I’ve always been an advocate of being ready before getting married. But there is a lot to being prepared.

Here is what I mean by saying you should not prepare for marriage.

Imagine someone who is exercising and running for a sports competition. Of course, it is only logical to prepare for a competition. But if that person is training only for a day’s game, his effort may not last beyond that day. If you wake him up two weeks after that competition, his legs may have become too stiff (from a lack of exercise) to run an inch.

Another vivid example is how students prepare for exams. Trust me, some students may never remember a line of what they read, say, a week after that exam because their focus (as they read) was just to pass the exam. Now imagine the outcome if students read to know or to become experts in their fields of study.

Prep your mind. Marriage is the same.

Learning something simply because you will need it in marriage will only burden you with struggles, trials, and errors, which may not come without a price when you’re already married.

Still not clear?

Let’s look at a few examples.

Communication Skill

When you build good communication skills, even as a single person, you save yourself the stress of starting that course from scratch while preparing for marriage.

Being someone who communicates well will mean that you understand how best people around you love to be informed, how to politely communicate your concerns to the people involved, and how to avoid malice and backbiting. It also includes being a good listener and giving people room to express themselves.

Tell me, if you have been a good communicator for, say, 5 to 10 years of your life, do you necessarily have to learn communication afresh before marriage? If you’ve learned to amicably resolve conflicts without losing yourself and compromising your values, would you need a different course for that in marriage?

Well, the exception would be if your spouse is from another planet.

Spiritual Anchor

I hear that the first time some people ever hear from God is when choosing who to marry?.

Honestly, I don’t know how that happens, and I’m not sure I can trust the outcome of such escapades.

But imagine you have developed a culture of devotion to God, intimacy with Him, and persistent prayer, study, and discerning patterns – even before you meet your spouse.

First, choosing who to marry will be like every other affair you’ve handled with God. It would be easy to spot things that are not consistent with His word and will for you. And that will be because you will decide based on what you’ve learned from your years-long intimacy with God, not that 30-minute video of ‘how to know he is the one’ you watched after your first date.

Secondly, discerning and praying forth the will of God in your marriage will be like every other prayer you’ve made. No struggles. No uncertainties. You’ll just be gliding in the Spirit as you’ve done a million times before you met your spouse.

And how about child upbringing? Or will we start debating whether prayer is necessary for a child’s upbringing?

If you already have an anchored spiritual life, praying your children into their best will also never be an issue.

Growing In Love


If you let love take root in your heart without making any man or woman a specific target of that love, loving your spouse will be no different. If you learn to love every human being without conditions and commit sacrificially to their growth, you will not need a refresher course for marriage.

And loving other people has a lot to do with submitting yourself, your will, and your desire for their own good (not in the martyr way). Coincidentally (or no coincidence, really), it is the first demand on married couples in Paul’s letter.

Submitting yourselves one to another in the fear of God.

Eph 5:21

Personal Development

Unfortunately, a lot of people get it wrong here.

In my post on uncommon truths about marriage, I remember discussing the catastrophe that results when two immature, unrefined, and self-centered people try to develop themselves in marriage.

Sweetheart, you don’t want to start growing up in marriage or moments before marriage. It will only be shallow and less effective than taking deep roots with self-development.

Suppose you are already a disciplined, patient, and tolerant person. In that case, you don’t need to learn another version of these virtues to make a good home. If you are already making investments in developing your mind and belief patterns, you’ll not need to learn them before marriage. Best still, developing yourself and discovering who you are before you venture around the subject of marriage will help you choose better.

You’ll not need any rigorous preparation for parenting if your own life is already in order.

Do you see?

Covenant Mindedness

Yes, I know. You’re already screaming, ‘but Meb, marriage is a covenant and not like every other relationship.’

But so is your relationship with every other believer. You must understand that you are bound to other believers by the precious, invaluable blood of Jesus, and you need to treat them with corresponding reverence.

With this understanding, you will have no problem understanding and honoring the covenant between you and your spouse.

In a Nutshell

Marriage is just like every other human relationship you’ll have, except that it takes everything to a much deeper level. Trust me, once you (and your spouse) have learned to relate with everyone properly, going into that deeper level will only be an intensification of every other thing you know.

Furthermore, your spouse will not be the only human you will interact with when you get married. You will still need other people. Getting rooted in the above virtues will make your marriage sweeter because you will have learned how to extend them to everyone, not your spouse alone.

I hope my special singles stop preparing for marriage alone and start working towards being the best and God-ordained versions of themselves.

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11 thoughts on “You Don’t Need to Prepare For Marriage”

  1. Adeshina Emmanuel

    This is the summary for me: “Marriage is just like every other human relationship you’ll have, except that it takes everything to a much deeper level”.

    Thanks Meb.

  2. Many people don’t love even themselves, but the want to get married, they’re just problem waiting to happen.

    Thank you Men for this wonderful piece.

  3. Sure! This is a more excellent way of doing life.
    It will also be helpful for parents to be mindful that teaching your children the core spiritual values is responsible parenting which lays the solid foundation for an excellent marriage and life as a whole.

  4. Preparing for wedding is different from preparing for marriage, I understand your perspective though, but just because we want to sound different we shouldn’t raise unnecessary misunderstanding. If you say I don’t need to prepare for marriage, what then should I prepare for? Or I shouldn’t be prepared for anything?

    1. Thank you Ayodele.
      I believe the point of the post is that those attributes we need to have a great marriage are the exact same attributes we need to be whole humans – with or without marriage. If and when we master being whole human beings, having a great marriage will not be a problem.

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