Building a Stronger Marriage One Step at a Time

Croatian couples learn to have godly marriages through dancing

By Hayley Newsom   |  22 . June . 2009
building-stronger-marriage-465x280.jpg The HomeBuilders Bible study in Croatia can keep you on your toes.

When you come to one Bible study in Croatia, you better bring your dancing shoes.

With a passion for dancing, Rahela and Goran Lazic approached their Bible study leader about combining Bible studies with dancing lessons to attract more nonbelieving couples.

Rahela and Goran first visited Davor and Sandra Kukec's Bible study in hopes that it would strengthen their marriage.

Having danced with her husband, Goran, for about 12 years, Rahela remembers, "Whenever we heard the music, we would think the same."

However, what came naturally while the music was playing was more of a struggle in day-to-day life.

Wanting to Grow in Their Marriage

Rahela heard about the HomeBuilders Bible study from a friend, and the couple decided to give it a try.

Rahela says, "It was really amazing to see they cared about families in Croatia."

Goran and Rahela quickly grew to love studying the Bible with other couples and improving their marriage through learning from each other's experiences.

When Davor invited the couple to a FamilyLife seminar, Rahela and Goran offered to teach the other couples to dance.

Davor, who leads FamilyLife in Croatia, wholeheartedly agreed. "They wanted to find a way to use their gifts and talents to minister to others," he says.

Success at the Seminar Leads to More Ideas

After a huge success at the seminar, Rahela and Goran talked to Davor about combining Bible studies with dancing lessons to bring in more people.

"It's an unusual evangelistic tool, dancing, but it really worked," says Davor. "People came for one and a half hours of Bible study, and then afterward, we had dance class."

The Bible study soon grew as the couples invited friends and neighbors.

Franko and Tanja are just one of many couples who came to the Bible study and learned that the same principles God gives for marriage also apply in dancing. Through dancing together, the couples practiced filling their harmonic roles of leading and following.

Franko explains, "We learned how to work together. I learned how to lead, and Tanja learned to follow. It's normal in dancing but more difficult in life."

He explains that culture doesn't support those different roles, but with the other couples in the study, they have support as they follow God's plan.

"It's hard for women because other women don't support them when they choose to follow their husbands. And a man is told he will either dance alone or he'll dance her way."

"Before we met the Kukecs, it was difficult, but we are changing," says Franko. "Our marriage is much better. We are much closer."

The New Craze in Croatia?

As others around Croatia have seen the success of combining couples' Bible study with dancing lessons, Davor has wondered how they will find more Gorans and Rahelas.

"I'm overwhelmed with how many people from other cities want us to come and start similar studies," says Davor.

In the meantime, he does hope others will learn from what God did through Rahela and Goran's dance classes and will consider what creative ways they might use their gifts to attract more people to Bible studies in their own cities.