Thanks so much for all your kind comments on my last post. I loved hearing from you! About a month ago, Nigel and I were asked to lead a marriage course for the couples in the organization we work with. I guess after twenty years of marriage, we should know a thing or two about marriage, right?
|On one of our good days…
In light of the recent news about celebrity couples “consciously uncoupling”, I wanted to share a few thoughts about this wonderful, difficult subject. Am I the only one who thinks it’s a miracle that any couples make it? Before I got married, I had this wonderful idealistic view about marriage. I thought marriage was going to be as romantic and wonderful as A Room with a View. Then, the ceremony takes place and for awhile, it’s bliss (or for some, they wake up on their honeymoon thinking “what the hell did I just get myself into?”)
But the reality is that marriage is hard work. It’s hard CUSSING work. The very act of two people becoming one means SOMETHING HAS TO DIE OR GIVE WAY for the “oneness” to happen. Hopefully, someone won’t die in the process but one can never tell. *wink*
Marriage is hard but it is oh so worth it to “become one.” Becoming one does not mean one person loses their identity to the other, it means forming an identity together. Sticking it out in marriage most often means laying down your life for your spouse. Doesn’t that sound glamorous and romantic? No. Hell no. It sounds painful and ridiculous yet this is what we are called to in marriage. This is why we don’t see it modeled in the media and this is what is most difficult for me in my marriage. I don’t want to lay down my life for Nigel! I want him to do that for me, for sure! And I might be able to do it for a time but usually, it ends when I start thinking, “Hasn’t he NOTICED all I am doing for him???” Ahem, that’s not love, darling.
|We actually were fighting yesterday over this marriage course…
The best thing we can do for our kids is to love our spouses with a sacrificial, covenantal love. To die to our own desires and wants and needs. To put their desires, wants and needs ahead of our own. Oh, and if you think I am preaching? Ohhh, I am preaching. Preaching to the choir, friends. Can I get an amen?
One last thing. It is worth it to fight to stay married. It’s worth it to realize one day that “I’d rather fight with you than make love with anyone else!” -Nick Mercer, Wedding Date. I want to tell couples that might be struggling or tempted to “consciously uncouple”, don’t give up! Fight, make love, go to counseling, take a trip, tie yourself together and make it work! I want to add something here. I realize that some of you may have tried everything to make your marriage work and perhaps it didn’t. I am not naive. I get it. I have divorce in my own family story. It’s painful. My thought? In any relationship you are in, love with a sacrificial love. Towards your kids, your friends, your family, your students, your lover…just do it.
For couples that are thinking about marriage, ask yourself, “Am I willing to lay down my life for this person, over and over and over, for the rest of my life?” Sorry, but this is a real question that you will face each and every day of your blissfully married life. And it is worth it in the end. “This is the very best way to love. Put your life on the line for your friends (spouse).” John 15:13
For marrieds, what is one thing you wish you knew about marriage before you were married?
For singles, what is one thing you’d want to know before getting married?