Our marriage mentors from Family Life Ministries share their personal experiences in helping others navigate new relationships.
Daniel & Megan
Married for 22 years with two sons
From the beginning of our mentoring journey, we wanted to be intentional about getting to know the couples assigned to us and to build authentic relationships with them. Megan and I love to invite our mentees over to our home for meals and we often get them to prepare the food with us. Such moments create opportunities for conversation, and we are glad that many of our mentee couples remain good friends till this day.
Our most memorable moment was witnessing the union of a young couple we had mentored for six years. Adrian and Hannah were only in their late teens when they started dating, and they finally got married last December.
The most significant thing we’ve learnt in marriage mentoring is to minister together as a couple. When we had disagreements, we would come to the Lord in prayer to ask for wisdom. There were occasions when the Holy Spirit revealed certain issues which we were able to address with the couples we were mentoring. Through serving together as marriage mentors, we have gotten to know each other in many ways that have strengthened our own marriage as well. “Unless the Lord builds the house, they labour in vain who build it.” (Psalms 127:1) Strong marriages are built with God at the centre. In a God-centred marriage, we form a threefold cord that is not easily broken (Ecclesiastes 4:12).
Marriage mentoring is rewarding, and we are glad that we can play a small part in seeing strong marriages built in Cornerstone.
Edwin & Laura
Married for 30 years with a son
As a couple, we have always had a heart for the next generation. In our previous church, we had already started
“doing life” with couples or individuals who were looking for mentors. So, when we were offered the opportunity to be marriage mentors in Cornerstone, we did not hesitate and jumped right into it.
Mentoring the younger ones has helped our own marriage as well. We cast no doubt on the adage that a teacher learns the most from his/her lessons. Laura and I have found ourselves learning what it means to keep our romance going even at our age, the value of spending meaningful time with one another not out of duty, and many other lessons from our mentee couples. We are so grateful that we have been given this opportunity to influence lives in our own quiet and small way.
Invariably, we do get this question - what are the keys to a strong and healthy marriage? To that end, our answer has always been that there is no secret formula other than to keep being committed to managing it daily. Marriage is an ongoing journey. It’s pretty much like sanctification. Some days things work while some days they don’t, and it is to continue to remain in the place of divine sanctification. We just have to keep at it, keep rowing, keep avoiding the pitfalls, keep the humour up, and keep committing to love.
Nathanael & Isabella
Married for 18 years with two children
Very early in our marriage, we had agreed that role-modelling marriage and family was something we wanted to do to influence those around us. We are grateful that God has always given us wisdom in both marriage and parenting, despite our lack of experience, to do things the “right” way. God would allow us to meet specific individuals in different seasons of our lives, giving us opportunities to bring a word of wisdom or role model
a way for them in marriage or family. Looking back, we realised how God had used all those moments to naturally dovetail us into our roles as marriage mentors.
Journeying with people is never easy. There were as many highs as there were lows. Not every couple we mentored ended up married, but when they parted ways they were clearer about what they wanted in their next relationship. For those who tied the knot, we have continued to journey with the many, even into their next season as parents. Today, many of the couples we mentored have become our friends, with strong relationships established that go beyond the mentor-mentee formalities.
Forging these relationships have really become one of the upsides to marriage mentoring. Our constant refrain to every new mentee couple is, “Have you prepared yourself to be the right one?” To start with individual introspection is really the key to building a long and strong marriage. Every mentee couple has unique issues to work through and in overcoming their struggles, they become a testimony to others of God’s faithfulness in their lives and marriage. Being able to watch these couples grow and mature, to raise their children and grow into the marriage which God has intended, brings us great satisfaction. This is what motivates us to do what we do all these years.
Paul & Clarissa
Married for 31 years with three children
Both my wife and I have always loved to invest in the lives of people from all ages and walks of life whom God has led us to.
Every couple we meet has their personal story and we know that they all want to have a strong marriage with a godly purpose. Our focus is to assist them with the process by providing perspective, wisdom, and hope (especially for marriages in distress) through our own marriage journey, and to witness them grow.
We have learnt through the years that our mentees do not need us to teach them more concepts or even biblical principles (some of them know it as well as us). Instead, what they want to hear are stories of our journey and how we have overcome by God’s grace. We have learnt that what attracts them is our authenticity, transparency, and genuine love for them (in that, age is no barrier).
We treasure every moment with each couple – their youthfulness and “new love” is very touching and inspiring.
Quite often, it also makes us feel younger. Their little thank you notes of how they have been blessed by our meet-ups are most precious. Whenever we recollect moments in our marriage to share with mentees, it becomes a memorable experience that brings us joy as a couple.
For a marriage to be strong, we believe that both husband and wife must show commitment, love, respect, support, trust, and forgiveness towards each other. This is the key to building a culture of open communication with each other, and remaining fully surrendered to Christ.