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The Marriage Course, developed by Nicky and Sila Lee of Alpha, provides practical tools to help couples at every stage of their relationship. Experts including Dr. Gray Chapman, Dr. Henry Cloud, and Dr. Sue Johnson weigh in on topics such as money, sex, love languages, healthy boundaries, and building connections. The Marriage Course is based on a Christian understanding of love and serves to strengthen marriages within the church while being accessible for all couples from any cultural background, with or without a background in the Christian faith.
The Marriage Course - Session 1: Strengthening Communication
This session helps couples to strengthen the connection between them by looking at what it takes to keep nurturing their relationship and by growing in their understanding of each other’s emotional needs and desires.
The Marriage Course - Session 2: The Art of Communication
This session looks at the importance of communication within marriage—through talking and listening—and helps couples to identify and overcome barriers to effective communication, particularly any hindrances to listening to their partner.
The Marriage Course - Session 3: Resolving Conflict
In this session, we look at how couples can increase their intimacy by expressing appreciation to each other, recognizing their differences, learning to negotiate disagreements, and supporting each other (either by praying together or by offering support in some other way).
The Marriage Course - Session 5: The Impact of Family
This session focuses on helping couples to recognize how their family backgrounds affect the way they relate to each other. They also consider how to build a good, healthy relationship with their parents, in-laws, and wider family and how hurt from childhood can be healed.
Sex isn’t just the icing on the cake of a marriage; it’s a vital ingredient of the cake itself. In this session couples are encouraged to talk about their sexual relationship and to recognize where they could make changes for the sake of their partner and their whole relationship.
Drawing on the work of Dr. Gary Chapman, this session looks at five main ways of expressing and receiving love— through words, time, touch, presents, and actions. Couples discover which expression of love is most important for their partner and how they can put this into practice.