Strengthen the Straight Path

Proverbs 4:25-27

Let your eyes look straight ahead; fix your gaze directly before you.

Give careful thought to the paths for your feet and be steadfast in all your ways.

Do not turn to the right or the left; keep your foot from evil.


Nobody enters a marriage wanting it to end in betrayal.

No one stands at the altar and thinks to themselves, "I can't wait to stray from my marriage."

Yet, infidelity is more common than we would expect.


The numbers grow when "betrayal" extends beyond explicit sexual encounters outside of the marriage.

However, if the boundaries and rules of the game aren't well-defined, someone is going to see "foul" where the other person see "score."

Imagine how much hurt can come from this.

Even a step or a turn in the wrong direction can lead to one astray.

Read on to learn how to strengthen your marriage's straight path, reduce surprises, conflicts, and disappointment.

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Sharing the Guard Your Heart Compass

While today's verse from Proverbs 4:25-27 references choices between wickedness and and righteousness, it can be applied within the marriage in a way to strengthen it.

Earlier in the passage, the author writes: "Above all else, guard your heart,
    for everything you do flows from it." (Proverbs 4:23)

Here's the question during the devotional:

Do you have similar beliefs and standards on what the "straight path" means and how to guard your heart?

This conversation should happen as early in the marriage as possible.

One of the reasons to do so is it gives a cleaner slate. There's less judgment and shame when the slate is clear.

But it's never too late to do so.

What gets covered in this conversation?

The foundation is addressing how you each believe you can stay on the straight path, and do you have agreement?

For example, one spouse may think it's okay to have 1:1 with friends of the opposite sex. Do you both agree?

One spouse may want to continue to have chats with prior ex-girl or boyfriends. But the other person doesn't believe this is right.

What about thoughts on social media, pornography (none at all, once in a while is okay), what should be said about when straying?

Let's say you both agree it's fine to have friends of the opposite sex, what is permitted in those conversations?

Adding definitions to what the "straight path" means can reduce confusion.

But this is part of the Marriage Habit, which means around every 40 days, you'll come back to this topic.

What gets covered?

You are not each other's accountability partner

This conversation is not meant to be an accountability session.

That potentially introduces too much judgment into the relationship, and may even promote more vigilence than necessary.

The sessions should mostly be around gaining definition and clarity.

For example, one spouse is having a trip away for a few weeks.

This 40-day session can revisit any prior conversation around what is okay and not okay. If needed, it can be a time to sharpen those definition if travel hasn't been covered.

The dance at play here is to find that space between being controlling and be assured. But it's better to have the conversation upfront.

For example, if one spouse has the expectation that the travelling spouse should call in or Facetime by a certain hour before going to bed, but does not communicate this need to his or her spouse, tension enters. Tension that could have been avoided.

Could the conversation bring up conflict?


A spouse may feel controlled needing to call before going to bed by a certain hour.

At this point, it needs to be a deescalated conversation around both sides sharing their needs and making a decision around what's best for the marriage.

The true north comes back to the foundation: what is the straight path?

What reduces risks of taking a step off the path of righteousness?

What is the decision that most guards the heart?

Private Reflection and Sharing Risks

During the devotional period, each person should also examine what risks are openning up right now.

Because this is not an accountability session, if something comes up, privately take a note to discuss with an accountability partner.

Do not probe the other person about risks and reflections!

What is fair, however, is to talk about how things are going with your respective accountability partners or accountability group.

For example, if you realize either one has not been part of one that covers these areas, then share that this is a goal and know that the next time this habit comes up, you'll share the status.

There is, however, a kind of risk that does make sense to share. It's what can be controlled within the marriage.

If a man feels the weight of criticism and shame from his wife does open up risk, this is a good time to share about the feelings of shame. The actual risks or thoughts may not be a safe topic, but it's fair to address what feels to be misssing.

If a woman feels that the man's lack of attention opens up her to risk, without criticizing or controlling, she should address something is missing.

In both cases, the attention should focus on Walking and Talking Side by Side: how can the issue be solved together.


Here's the Twitter thread where you can ask clarifying questions while spreading the word of the Power of Marriage Habits!

Nobody enters a marriage wanting it to end in betrayal.

No one stands at the altar and thinks to themselves, "I can't wait to stray from my marriage."

— TheMarriageHabit (@marriagehabit) March 27, 2023

Once we open up the forums, you'll be able to fill out a simple form and ask questions privately.

Strengthen the Straight Path