Editor’s Note: More than 2.3 million people watched as Jeremy and Audrey Roloff shared their vows and committed their lives to each other. Now for the first time, the former co-stars of TLC’s hit show Little People, Big World share their imperfect, resilient, and inspiring love story in their new book A Love Letter Life, which is now a New York Times bestseller. Enjoy this excerpt from the book.
I’ve heard it said that one of the truest tests of our love for someone is how often and fervently we pray for them. In other words, prayer is evidence of love. If you’re married, do you pray for your spouse? Do you pray with your spouse? An experienced married couple challenged Audrey and me a few years ago when they asked us, “When you encounter conflict in your marriage, do you pray about it more than you talk about it?” This statement still convicts us today.
I’ve heard it said that our relationship with God is only as strong as our prayer life. Prayer is a relationship, a conversation, an ordering of our worship. I love this quote from Charles Spurgeon: “True prayer is neither a mere mental exercise nor a vocal performance. It is far deeper than that — it is spiritual transaction with the Creator of heaven and earth.”
For Audrey and I, praying together has increased our intimacy, our faith, our connectedness, our dreams, our vision, our direction, and our love. Praying together has brought unity and connectedness; Satan wants to bring division and detachment. Praying together has been a way to partner with God; Satan tempts us to believe we don’t need God’s partnership. Praying together brings God’s truth and will into the light; Satan wants us to walk in the darkness of lies. Praying together offers a testimony to God’s faithfulness as we see our prayers being answered; Satan wants to blind us from the way God is working in our life and marriage. Praying together keeps our lives focused and in tune with the Holy Spirit; Satan wants us to fall asleep or get distracted by something else.
We believe that prayer is the best first line of defense when we encounter struggles, issues of the heart, and conflict. It should be our go-to, not our last resort. Pray for each other, for your future marriage and family, for your discernment in decisions, for the Lord to guide your relationship, for your dreams and desires, for life circumstances, for growth in your knowledge of the truth, for the ability to walk in wisdom, for a heart that longs to praise God, and for protection over your love story. I love how Tim Keller describes the value of prayer:
“Prayer is the only entryway into genuine self-knowledge. It is also the main way we experience deep change — the reordering of our loves. Prayer is how God gives us so many of the unimaginable things He has for us. Indeed, prayer makes it safe for God to give us many of the things we most desire. It is the way we know God, the way we finally treat God as God. Prayer is simply the key to everything we need to do and be in life.”
One simple way you can pray protection over your love story is by praying the armor of God (Ephesians 6:13-17) over your loved one while inserting their name. For example:
Father God, thank you for giving me Audrey to love. In an effort to love her better, I want to pray your armor over her. Would you place on Audrey’s head the helmet of salvation to guard her thoughts and mind in Christ. Place on her chest the breastplate of righteousness to guard her heart and keep it pure. Wrap around her waist the belt of truth to prevent any lies from creeping into her thoughts or head and to keep her far from temptation. Put the sandals of peace on her feet to keep her walking bravely and courageously without fear or worry. Give her the shield of faith to trust in your leading. Lord, train her in the sword of the Spirit to fight against the fiery arrows of attack. Cover her with your full protection and armor as she enters the battlefield today. In Jesus’ name. Amen.
Ultimately, we believe that the greatest protector of love is God:
If God is for us, who can be against us? — Romans 8:31
And God is love:
Whoever does not love does not know God, because God is love. — 1 John 4:8
As we invite God into our love story and allow Him to be the strand that prevents us from unraveling (Ecclesiastes 4:12), we are able to love more intentionally, more creatively, and more faithfully.
Excerpted with permission from A Love Letter Life by Jeremy and Audrey Roloff, copyright Jeremy and Audrey Roloff.
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If you are married, when you encounter conflict in your marriage, do you pray about it more than you talk about it? If prayer is the evidence of love, love should motivate us to pray for our spouses, our children, our family, our friends. Who do you love/are you praying for? Come share with us on our blog! We want to hear from you! ~ Laurie McClure, Faith.Full