Thought #2: In marriage, you’re on the same team

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There’s just no two ways about it, marriage is a tricky business.  I just gave my daughter a book to read by Gary Chapman—Things I Wish We’d Known Before We Got Married. I would have loved to had that book before I got married, but honestly, I doubt I would have read it.
Young, head-over-heels in love, with nothing but marital bliss in my future, I knew nothing bad could happen. I mean, we’d dated for almost six years, and we were in LOVE. It didn’t matter that we would have petty little things to deal with like jobs, money, decisions about home and church, people of the opposite sex invading our territory, raising kids, family in-law issues, etc… LOVE CONQUERS ALL, RIGHT???
You’d think the divorce rate alone would make people realize that marriage can be a bit harrowing at times. Your spouse is the one you come home to every night that hasn’t done the dishes or made supper and left all the laundry in the floor in the hallway. Your spouse is the one who leaves the toilet paper roll empty. Your spouse is the one who never picks up his socks from the floor beside the bed. Petty little things, right? But those are the starting points for the bigger arguments. Before you know it, those socks in the floor have turned into an entire closet full of clothes thrown out the upstairs bedroom window onto the lawn! That’s not what you
signed up for, is it?
It’s a fact that living with someone requires compromise. Overlooking a sock or hopping with your pants down to get to the toilet paper just might be necessary every once in a while.
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My husband and I both do things that get on each others nerves. But after 23 years of marriage, I think we’ve finally figured a few things out…things we had forgotten since we first said ,”I do.”
  • We are a team. The day we said “I do” we made a commitment to spend life together as husband and wife—”one flesh.” We both wanted the same things in life, but somehow “life” keeps getting in the way. We must remember teamwork.
  • It’s natural to think about all of the hard work you do every day. Try honestly putting yourself in your spouses shoes. Talk to them and try to understand what they have to go through every day. My hubby deals with business finances all day every day, in addition to employee/staffing problems, thousands of e-mails, and so much more I’m not even aware of. Yet he makes it a point to spend time with his family every day. Maybe because I’m an only child, or I’m just plain selfish, but this one I have to work on daily. I’m quite sure I don’t work nearly as hard as he does and I need to find more to alleviate some of his responsibility.
  • Communicate your feelings/frustrations before you act on them. Watchout…here come that “a” word…affair. When frustrations build inside a marriage, other options can look very appealing. I’ve seen some second marriages work better than the first, only because they learned some valuable lessons the first time around. But you can bet that a new spouse will bring on a whole new set of frustrations to deal with, plus the baggage from the first marriage. So you might as well do it right the first time!

 

Goodness knows David and I have been through some tough stuff. Yet in every situation, we tried to seek God’s will. But in the midst of a difficult relationship, God can seem very far away because we turn inward to the “poor, pitiful me” mentality. Once we were on the other side of whatever the situation was, we could clearly see God’s hand in the situation. And let me tell you, there were some seriously bad situations. But we made it through them stronger, and our marriage is better than it’s ever been.

 

Love is definitely a decision. Marriage is a commitment. If you put God at the head of your marriage and remember that you began and plan to end this journey as a team, marriage can be a life of unparalleled happiness.

 

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Comments

  1. Elizabeth Meaders says:

    Well said and undeniably true! God bless your marriage!

  2. Good post, Celeste. We celebrated our 25th anniversary last September. Lots of water under the bridge, lots of socks on the floor, lots of grunts and silent treatments but lots of grace. PTL

    Love isn’t a feeling; it’s a decision to build a life together. Love the Chapman resource you mentioned. It should be required reading for premarital counseling. Along with Five Love Languages, one of the best NF books ever written.

    Happy New Year, my friend!

  3. Anonymous says:

    In this post I was able to glean you must have a Most Amazing Husband!

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