10 Marriage Goals Every Couple Should Have for 2021

Janet Thompson Crosswalk.com Contributing Writer Dec.30, 2020

happy couple holding sparklers for New Year's bundled up for winter, marriage goals

My husband and I celebrated twenty-eight years of marriage on December 19, 2020. Even though our anniversary is a sleigh ride away from Christmas, we try to get away for a couple of days to reflect on the past year and set goals for the coming year of marriage. As we look over our list and check it twice, we often find we didn’t even come close to meeting all our goals. Some we’ll carry over to the next year, others are no longer applicable, but it’s always encouraging when we check off those we managed to accomplish.

Praying and brainstorming over the next year, we each set a few personal goals but our focus is arriving at those we mutually agree will enhance our marriage and family. Some years, the lists are longer than other years. We’re not trying to reach a specific number, but we do want each goal to be achievable.

Photo credit: ©GettyImages/bernardbodo

Why Should We Have Marriage Goals?

Our annual goal setting and review has helped us maintain spiritual, personal, and marital growth in our relationship. Even if you’re not typically a “goal-setting” person, you probably do set some expectations for your marriage: where you’re going to live, what type of a house, how many kids, where will you work, what church to attend . . . . Life is full of decisions and married couples make most of them together. Here are a few parameters to consider when setting goals:

Schedule alone time together and pray—Ask God to be a part of your goal setting and to give you courage, patience, and peace.

Set maintainable goals—it’s ok, even good if goals stretch you both. But if they’re not realistic, you may not take them seriously or give up on attaining them. Don’t set goals you’ll “try” to maintain. If you don’t think you’re going to do them, then reconsider something more doable.

Set measurable goals—For example, if you want to grow your savings, establish a specific dollar amount and steps to reaching that goal. If the goal is to move, agree on a timeframe and a particular neighborhood or city. You’ll both know when you’ve reached these types of goals.

Set purposeful goals—We don’t typically pursue something we don’t feel has value or purpose. So before you set any goals, determine why they’re meaningful to you as a couple.

Not meaningful to your in-laws, friends, or even your kids . . . they may benefit from your goals . . . but you must want them enough to push through even when it’s difficult. Ask each other why you want these goals and discuss how you’ll work together as a team to achieve them.

2020 has been a hard year for everyone. Little did we know as we ushered in the New Year that we would soon be experiencing a pandemic and recession that has touched everyone’s life and put unexpected challenges on most marriages. And we don’t know what to expect in 2021, but if our marriage is secure, we can make it through together in sickness and in health, in good times and in bad, for richer or poorer because we’re united as one in marriage.

  • Therefore a man shall leave his father and his mother and hold fast to his wife, and they shall become one flesh. – Genesis 2:24
  • So they are no longer two, but one. Therefore what God has joined together, let man not separate. – Matt. 19:6
  • The man who finds a wife finds a treasure, and he receives favor from the Lord. – Prov. 18:22 NLT

10 Marriage Goals Every Couple Should Have for 2021couple praying together at table

Marriage Goal #1 — Love Jesus More Than You Love Each Other!

There’s a myriad of things vying for first place in our marriages—jobs, kids, finances, possessions, each other . . . But the Lord clearly said we should put no other gods before him. He wants to be at the center of our lives as husband and wife. He must be the head of our homes. Keeping Jesus first in our relationship ensures a more Christ-like attitude in actions and decisions. Other goals fall into place when we run everything by Jesus together in prayer. It’s not just an esoteric goal, it’s survival.

“Though one may be overpowered, two can defend themselves. A cord of three strands is not quickly broken.” – Ecc. 4:12

Marriage Goal #2 — Mature Spiritually

As each partner grows closer to God, marriages strengthen. Envision a triangle with God at the top and the husband in one lower corner and the wife in the opposite corner. If the spouses stay in their separate corners, they’re the farthest apart. But as each spouse moves up his or her side of the triangle, they move closer to God and to each other until they meet together with God at the pinnacle of the triangle.

Often we’re in men’s and women’s Bible study groups but consider joining, or starting, a couple’s Bible study to grow in your faith together. It’s so important to pray together daily, more than just before meals. If this isn’t already a daily habit, make it a goal to start and finish your day holding hands and sharing your praises and prayer requests. Praying together is an intimate, integral part of marriage with blessings you wouldn’t want to miss.

“So that the body of Christ may be built up until we all reach unity in the faith and in the knowledge of the Son of God and become mature, attaining to the whole measure of the fullness of Christ.” – Eph. 4:12-13

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