Want to do a marriage retreat but don’t have the time or money?
With all of the free online resources available today, it’s never been easier to plan a do-it-yourself marriage retreat.
While you could work through these resources at home, a simple getaway might make your effort all the more special. You might also work through resources with couples from church for a deeper time of fellowship and connection. If you’re a pastor, consider adapting some of these activities for use in your church.
Activities / Courses
1. A Do-it-Yourself Marriage Retreat from Deepak Raju at the Biblical Counseling Coalition
Raju, a pastor at Capitol Hill Baptist Church, has compiled several pages of helpful questions and activities for married couples to work through. You may want to keep a copy of this (and the next resource) on hand for regular marriage check-ups.
2. 240 Marriage Communications Topics by Brad Hambrick of Summit Church
This resource (PDF) is similar to the first, but will help you work through important issues with your spouse. Hambrick is a gifted biblical counselor and practical thinker. (More from him to come.)
3. Marriage Core Seminar from Capitol Hill Baptist Church
CHBC in Washington, DC has a Sunday School Core Seminar on marriage. They cover a lot of ground including a biblical theology of marriage, what it means to have God at the center of a marriage, conflict, communication, sexuality, children, infertility, and divorce. While you might not work through all 12 sessions during a DIY retreat, you can certainly get started or choose the most relevant topics for you and your spouse.
4. Course: Christ-Centered Marriage by Bryan Chapell
This free Covenant Seminary course isn’t for everybody and may not fit into a ‘retreat’ as neatly, but you will get top-notch teaching from the professor and current pastor. You may be interested in Chapell’s book with the same title.
Video Seminars / Workshops
5. When Sinners Say “I Do” – Workshop Videos with Dave Harvey
Harvey, who wrote the book When Sinners Say “I Do”, presented the core of his message in four talks at a church retreat. (You can also buy the official WSSID DVD set, but it’ll set you back a bit.) This series is gospel-centered practicality at its best.
6-10. Gospel-Centered Marriage Seminars from Brad Hambrick of Summit Church
Hambrick, a biblical counselor, knows the realities of marriage and the hope we have in Christ. The following gospel-centered marriage seminars come with tests and resources as supplements:
While I haven’t yet worked work through all of these resources, I warmly commend them and hope they strengthen your marriage and pursuit of Christ.