Friday, July 31, 2009

~and...what happens after marriage?

I went to the library today because I haven't been in so long, at least six months. I know I haven't been the whole time BJ and I have been together, so who knows when the last time I set foot inside there was. I got this one book called "I Do, I Did, Now What?" by Jenny Lee. It's about what happens after the wedding, after the expensive dress, after the luxury honeymoon (not that I'll have any of those two things, but still. The concept is the same), and how you'll one day wake up to the provocative realization that you are, indeed, someone's wife. Your husband's wife. Your husband's closest female companion, your husband's best friend, your husband's soulmate, go-getter, meal-cooker, bathroom scrubber, sock-matcher, foot-massager...yeah, you get it. How weird would that be? You go to bed single for the last night of your life, then you suddenly wake up with the realization that there's no way out. I know that's a weird way to look at it, but really. Marriage is a commitment for life, sickness and health, til death to you part (or, preferrably, for time and eternity). If you get in a small fight, guess what? No way out. You've made a promise to God, each other, and all other witnesses to always stand beside each other through thick and thin, for better and for worse.

I was also reading somewhere online, that if you can stay married for seven years, you pretty much have a marriage set for the rest of your lives. After seven years, or right at seven years, there's the Seven Year Itch (which is also a Marilyn Monroe movie), which is supposedly said to bring one of the worst fights of a married relationship. Experts say that if a couple can make it past that, then they're in the running for a lifelong marriage.

My thoughts? I don't think it's about a Seven Year Itch at all. I think a majority of people who end up splitting up do not have God as one of the key focuses of their lives and relationships, friendly relationships or a married relationship. Put God first and everything else will fall into place. As of late that's the story of my life, we've been tithing (even though we're barely scraping by with our gas meters on near empty 75% of the time), praying, and going without just so we can fully trust God to provide. And we've been so blessed for it! I feel great knowing we're fully trusting him to provide our every need.

Ecclesiastes 4:12 says, "One can be defeated, two can conquer, but a cord of three strands cannot be easily broken" (or something along those lines). I came across that verse in a devotional book residing in my mother's bathroom. I liked the verse so much I've decided to use it in this Sunday's Sunday School lesson for my Junior Class. The meaning of it is simple: a relationship needs each other and God to be sure nothing is broken.

What I've learned from Jenny Lee's book so far is this: trivial things are not worth fighting about. Especially in marriage. The author talks about flipping out because her new husband put his mustard covered knife on the clean white dish towel, soon realizing that when her husband came up behind her, wrapped his arms around her, and said he loved her, everything she was mad about before seemed to disipate into thin air. I have a hard time not holding grudges, so that will be something I'll have to work on!

I know we'll have our fair share of disputes, but nothing we argue over will be worth the cost of a marriage down the drain. All we have to do is remember what brought us together in the first place, pick up, and carry on.

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