Married Life

We want to change the culture and expectations of marriage both inside the church and outside in the world. Join us as we explore what marriage means and how your marriage can beat the statistics and bring hope to the world.

Scroll down to view the latest entries on our blog, view upcoming classes and events, and more!

Married Life Ministry Survey

Married Life Ministry needs your help! Please fill out the survey below to help us learn more about how we can focus on the needs of marriages in our congregation.

Married Life Survey


Military Family Ministry

We are working to build a Military Family Ministry to support military families.  If you are a military family, we want to know! Please fill out our Military Family Ministry form so we can help support you.

Military Family Ministry

Military Family Partner

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From the Blog

Smart Stepfamily Class
Mar 28, 2019

Sherwood Oaks is committed to meeting the needs of blended families including a six week series called The Smart Step-family. It is designed for soon to be remarried and remarried couples and provides practical, realistic solutions to the spiritual and relational challenges that step-families face.  The program is based on years of research into the issues and methods to achieving successful family relationships for blended families. This class will enable you to:

  • Recognize the unique personality and place of each family member.
  • Solve the everyday puzzles of step-parenting  and stepchildren relationships.
  • Learn communication skills to deal with ex-spouses.
  • Honor families of origin while developing new traditions.
  • Invest the time to grow your step-family slowly and sustainably rather than looking for instant results.

The Smart Step-Family class meets on an as-needed basis. Please click here to indicate your interest in this class and other offerings.

From the Blog

Big Night Out
May 10, 2018

The Big Night Out is a fun evening for face-to-face, intentional time with your spouse. We always focus on a practical marriage tool; this time, our attention was on the legacy we are creating together.  

As a team, we loved the movie “UP” as an image to float around. We even tried to raffle off a balloon ride! The story is sweet. Carl, a 78-year-old balloon salesman, is about to fulfill a lifelong dream. After tying thousands of balloons to his house, he flies away on grand adventure. But curmudgeonly-Carl's worst nightmare comes true when he discovers… Russell, a stowaway aboard the balloon-powered house. SPOILER ALERT - the floating house is the fulfillment of a shared dream Carl has with his late wife, Ellie. Here, at the end of his life, Carl was taking the adventure of floating a house as his legacy!

A legacy is more than an obituary. Isn’t it funny to think that a person’s life can be summed up in a few sentences? While an obituary “reports", legacy is our pattern of living: daily choices that add up to our lifetime. 

We showed the video clip of Carl and Ellie starting their "club". We love asking “how your club started” question, because it reminds us of the energy and hope that beginning a relationship brings. Inviting Marilyn and Dr. Dwain Illman, who've been "in a club" for 50 years to our Big Night Out was a joy. We asked them for wisdom... it was sweet to see the honesty and love they have for each other.

As a church, we need the wisdom, prayer and community of each other because  —  marriage is hard! Jeff and Kristi Huston were amazingly transparent about the reality of the seasons we all move through because the good and the bad all shape our legacy. A real love story is full of flat tires, home repairs, medical bills. The hardship of story drives us to confront the idealistic legacy that we dream of and forget when the hard seasons of life come.

Proverbs 16:9 - We can make our plans, but the Lord determines our steps. (NLT)

Final idea from the Big Night Out: the focus of the film "UP" is on Carl's life after Ellie. The legacy that he lives, once she’s gone is initially as a recluse, holding out against the world, keeping his home as a memorial, and talking to an absent wife... but there is an adventure still to have, and it’s bigger than Carl.

Carl thought his house on the top of Paradise falls WAS HIS LEGACY but he didn’t see was Russell in the background being impacted by HIS choices. Carl was leaving a legacy, impacting Russell’s life. GOD IS WORKING through our lives painting a much bigger picture than we see. God at work is bigger than your marriage. And this is the beauty and the hope of the Gospel! 

In the New Testament, the book of Philippians is a joyful letter, but as an undercurrent, its writer, Paul, has a death sentence: he wrote from prison! In the face of his imminent ending, Paul speaks with sober authenticity and a confidence that only a forgiven person can speak of:

PHIL 3:12-13 — I know that I am not yet what God wants me to be. I haven’t reached that goal, but I keep moving toward it to make it mine because Christ made me and saved me for this. I know that I haven’t yet reached my goal, but there’s one thing I always do. Forgetting the past and straining toward what is ahead, 

The humility of Paul to say, “I know that I am not yet what God wants me to be… but I keep moving to make it mine” is just self-help WITHOUT the forgiveness and resurrection power of "because Christ made me and saved me for this.”

PHIL 3:13-14 — I keep my eyes focused on the goal so that I may one day win the prize that God has called me to receive through Christ in the life above.

This is the beauty of the adventure of your life and marriage.

From the Blog

Resources for Step-Families
Jul 05, 2016

Being a member of a step-family can have unique rewards and challenges. Sherwood Oaks offers a class just for parents in a blended family role.

This course meets on an as needed basis. For more information, contact Maggie at

And in the meantime, view this helpful resource online for survival tips about step-family life!

From the Blog

The Couple Checkup
Apr 22, 2016

The Couple Checkup is an online assessment tool designed to identify the unique relationship strengths and growth areas of dating, engaged, or married couples.  Couples receive a 15-20 page report on their relationship and can download a free Discussion Guide, designed to help them learn proven relationship skills.  Research has shown this process improves relationships by stimulating honest dialogue, increasing understanding, and empowering couples. Couples can review their results and go through the discussion guide by themselves or choose to have trained facilitators guide them through it.

The cost of The Couple Checkup is $35. After registering, an email will be sent with instructions on how to take The Couple Checkup.

Click Here to Register


Elsie Ellsworth

Elsie Ellsworth

Marriage Coordinator & Premarital Counseling Coordinatoroffice: 812.334.0206 x 232
Maggie Mobley

Maggie Mobley

Director of Women & Married Life Ministriesoffice: 812.334.0206x204
Melissa Abram

Melissa Abram

Women's Ministry & Married Life Assistant

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