The increasing number of failed marriages, frequently ended on minor disagreements, has led me to conclude that we should update the marriage vows.
I have added some warnings in the following “Revised Version.” This is partly tongue in cheek, but helps to place our capricious nature into the picture.
I now take you to be my wife (husband) according to God’s holy word; to have and to keep from this time forward. I will love, esteem and respect you, I will be faithful to you; I will encourage you to become all that God intends, for as long as we both shall live.
Should I fail to love you, I can expect a deteriorating closeness and companionship.
Should I fail to esteem and respect you, you will exhibit a deteriorating personhood and dignity.
Should I fail to be faithful to you, our marriage and our children’s future will be in jeopardy.
Should I fail to encourage you to become all that God intends, you will lose your individual distinctness and our combined potential for Him will be lost.
Should my actions or attitudes bring our marriage to an end before death parts us, we will both experience misery, displaced children, and an enduring sense of loss.
I make this solemn vow and covenant to you and to God.
I’m sure you can refine this with your own words and vows, but you should be able to pick up the general idea. Perhaps you might like to recite these vows to your partner, and sense the response in your own heart.