Can you imagine if we reduced the divorce rate in America by 99.999%? We’ve all heard that approximately 50% of marriages in the U.S. end in the divorce. But what if it was only 0.001%?

How to Divorce-Proof Your Marriage
Divorce can be prevented. Here’s a 99.99% guaranteed way to divorce-proof your marriage. (Tweet That)

If you’re married and want to stay married, you need to read this.

If you’re not married and want to have a successful marriage, don’t gloss over this. You need to know this for when you do get married. It will improve your chances of staying happily married by a factor of 500,000 (seriously).

So I’ll cut straight to the chase.

50% of all marriages fail. But there is something you can do to reduce that chance to 0.001%:

Pray together.

No really, that’s it. No classes. No books. You don’t have to buy anything or set aside hours a day to talk. Just pray together.

I’m not suggesting it might work. Or that it’s supposed to work. The numbers don’t lie. It does work. Even Dr. Phil says so.

OK…I’ve never watched an episode of Dr. Phil and can’t vouch for the quality of his advice. But he is famous and quoting famous people increases the legitimacy of facts by at least 19% (unless said famous person has ever posted a picture on Twitter of him or herself getting a tattoo).

Dr. Phil writes in his bestselling book, Relationship Rescue:

… an interesting statistic shared by David McLaughlin in his wonderful series entitled The Role of the Man in the Family reflects that the divorce rate in America is at a minimum one out of two marriages. But the reported divorce rate among couples that pray together is about one in ten thousand. Pretty impressive statistic, even if you reduce it a thousandfold.

It’s a fact. Praying together works. It is an (almost) guaranteed way to divorce-proof your marriage.

So do it. Every day.

How to pray together as a couple

  1. Keep it simple. Simple sometimes means short. You don’t need to pray for two hours. Or even ten minutes. Get out what’s on your heart, and be done.
  2. Don’t try to impress. You’re talking to God. Trust me, He’s not impressed (yes, He’s crazy about you, but it’s kind of hard to impress the One who breathed life into the Aardvark). Remember that you are speaking to Him, not your spouse.
  3. Be honest. Don’t hold back. Admit your faults and ask for help. Trust me; nothing is more intimate than that.
  4. Do it consistently. Every day. If it’s late at night, pray. If you are traveling, pray. It might only be for ninety seconds, but pray. Together.
  5. Have reasonable expectations. One week of prayer together probably isn’t going to have the transformative effect you want. It might, but probably won’t. Give it time and keep doing it.
  6. Don’t forget the other 23+ hours in the day. 1 Peter 3:7 says, “Husbands, don’t treat your wives like garbage. They are more fragile than you are, but they are also God’s children just like you. If you don’t treat them right, God will not hear your prayers.” (Matt McWilliams Translation). Ask God for help to be more loving, honest, servant-hearted, etc. Then put it into practice.

There you have it…an easy way to virtually eliminate divorce in America.

You are now equipped with this powerful information. How will you use it?

Married people, I want to hear from you especially. How has prayer together helped your marriage?

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17 thoughts on “The (Almost) Guaranteed Way to Divorce-Proof Your Marriage

  1. Tom Dixon says:

    When I got married 13 years ago, I received similar advice from an elderly woman. It was wisdom then, and also now.

    1. Matt McWilliams says:

      Good for her for sharing such awesome advice. Life changing!

      1. Well ill be married 8 years junei spent the last 18 months in prison i come home march 20 my then my farther n law dies 3 weeks later my wife and i get in a fight my fault and now i am away from her for my stupid actions i know prayer works and im trusting god to move in our marrige i love her uncontionaly and she loves me please pray for our family we have 2 little girls also robert and gretchen call us by name pleasr thank u god bless

      2. Matt McWilliams says:

        Praying for you now Robert.

  2. I have always known that couples prayer is really important. Lately, we have been slipping out of the habit though and are not praying together daily, so thanks for the reminder, Matt.

    During times of stress and discord, praying together has helped us to really hear where the other is coming from. As my husband prays out loud to Heavenly Father, he is able to share his feelings and desires in a way he rarely shares directly to me. I hear his love, concern, and appreciation for me. This always softens my heart, regardless of how irkitated I have been at him earlier in the day.

    My husband must instinctively know this too, because when he is angry with me and is not ready to let it go, he frequently will tell me he does not feel like saying prayers with me. I am sure that if I share your statistics with him that he will be on board with making sure that when we are feeling the least like praying is when we should double our efforts to pray together. As we read in the Book of Mormon in 2 Ne 32:8 … For if ye would hearken unto the Spirit which teacheth a man to pray, ye would know that ye must pray; for the evil spirit teacheth not a man to pray, but teacheth him that he must not pray.”

    I am always amazed at how simple the solutions to life’s challenges always are…especially in human relationships.

  3. Logan Thompson says:

    Wow, God must be telling me to step up my game. Our pastor brought up that same Dr. Phil quote yesterday in church. His sermon was all about marriage and the importance of praying together. Good stuff Matt.

    1. Matt McWilliams says:

      Woah. Sounds like it.

      Oh and your pastor made me write this 🙂

  4. Steve Pate says:

    The phrase, “its easier said than done” comes to my mine. Just because my wife and I are Christians, doesn’t mean we pray automatically. We do pray together and most of the time its short. But if we don’t consistently pray together, we can find our selves not praying together for days.

    My added note to this post would be, the more you pray together/communicate, the better sex life you’ll have too. Just saying!!

    Thanks Matt!

    1. Matt McWilliams says:

      You noticed that too?

      I think it’s just a matter of prioritizing it. If you can’t find 90 seconds each day, something is wrong.

  5. Jon Stolpe says:

    My wife and I typically pray together twice a day (not counting meals). We pray before we leave the house for work, and we pray before we go to sleep. Prayer has kept us grounded and connected to each other and to God.

  6. Lily Kreitinger says:

    I just read this from your Twitter feed. We are trying to start a ministry called “Together with Jesus: Couple Prayer” and have successfully presented the series to a few couples.

    The research it’s built on states: In 1980, it was found that couples who were either praying ​together or reading the bible together daily, and also attending church together weekly, experienced a divorce rate of less than 1 divorce in every 1105 marriages. 1.


    Praying together is the most powerful thing you will ever do with your spouse.

    1. Matt McWilliams says:

      Imagine if everyone did it…

  7. Christina Perez says:

    i just want to share my experience and testimony here.. i was married for 6 years to my husband and all of a sudden, another woman came into the picture.. he started hailing me and he was abusive. but i still loved him with all my heart and wanted him at all cost…then he filed for divorce. my whole life was turning apart and i didn’t know what to do .he moved out of the house and abandoned the kids.. so someone told me about trying spiritual means to get my husband back and introduced me to a spell caster…so i decided to try it reluctantly. although i didn’t believe in all those things… then when he did the special prayers and spell, after 2days, my husband came back and was pleading. he had realized his mistakes. I just couldn’t believe it..anyways we are back together now and we are happy. in case anyone needs this man, his email address dr.zakispellhome@gmail.com his spells is for a better life. And he promise it last forever. Contact this great man for marriage and relationship problem at dr.zakispellhome@gmail.com

  8. Ricky Linder says:

    Respectfully, the author failed to establish this statistic as, “fact” (his word). To make the statistic compelling (still not fact) the author must cite, not doctor Phil, not David McLaughlin, but actual research. I heard a similar statistic from a pastor yesterday, and spent the last couple hours trying to find the source. The pastor said it was about one in one-thousand, doctor Phil says, “one in ten thousand”. According to others the statistic is, “less than one percent” from a 2001 poll by the Southern Baptist Convention. Another suggests this statistic originates from the National Association of Marriage Enhancement. I have not found methodology, official information about the samples or questions, or any published documentation at all, only brief references to alleged polls by interested parties. This isn’t fact, this is barely research; a TV personality said somebody else alleged something that may be rooted in a real poll by an interested party. Not to mention Social desirability bias. It’s likely Christians are uncomfortable telling pollsters about divorce versus secular folk. Particularly if the pollster is an interested party, more if interested and affiliated with respondents. Even a series of reputable polls with large samples by *disinterested* parties wouldn’t make anything fact, and wouldn’t eliminate all social desirability bias, but it would be compelling. Now there’s more research suggesting non-negligible differences between Christian and secular marriage (I’ve read conflicting research; maybe legit, if sparse, and possibly interested in outcome), but that’s a different question than “one in ten thousand [if they worship/pray/read together]”.

  9. Micah and Rochelle says:

    Thank you for this article Matt. My wife, Rochelle, and I run a marriage and family website. I’ve found each of your points to be spot on. Praying together systematically will save your marriage much trouble in the long run. It reminds us of who is in charge.

  10. Rev. Kevin J. Coward says:

    My wife and I established values prior to serious dating/courting far different than we ever knew was possible. We prayed routinely. Both of us came out of painful divorces. Her husband of 8 years began a relationship with another woman — adultery was the reason for their divorce. They both went to church, but did not pray together. It broke her heart to the point that suicide was an option. It took years to recover the loss. For me the story was similar. I was married for 12 years. We went to church weekly. No impact in our lives. While I was at work she took liberties with many men and engaged in adultery far more than I knew. There was no ‘love’ I was trapped. I ended the marriage based on Matthew19:9. She refused to stop. She abandoned the marriage and our 8 year old son. I stayed out of dating for fear of doing the stupid same pattern. From that point I choose to be surrendered to the LORD to be a better man. Time passed, I sought God’s heart to know better and do better. She and I prayed for the right path. During our courting we pledged to NOT have any sort of sexual contact. I then realized that she was my sister in Christ and I the brother in the Lord Jesus. I treated her a ‘special gift’ to my life. Brothers and Sisters who have sex prematurely destore the holy bond. On our marriage day…night we finely allowed ourselves to engage freely in what the Lord wanted for us. We spent many sweet times praying, reading, and singing worship together throughout our time together. We are now approching 28 years happily married. We did our homework! First marriage fail 50/50%; Second Marriages fail at the rate of 65% verses and 35%. We both worked well together to stay in a happy and beautiful bond. Thank you LORD !

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