I can honestly say my marriage is my favorite part of life right now. Maybe one day it will be raising children, owning our own home, who knows what the future holds. Right now my happy place is in my husband's arms. In fact, it's been like that since the day we said "I do".
After our wedding ceremony we walked down the aisle and turned the corner to a hallway in our church. There we stole our first moment alone as husband and wife. I remember feeling so thankful, so relieved, and so emotional I just wept into his embrace. It was a moment of pure joy.
I get asked at work by students once in a while if I'm married. Always by some rowdy teenage boy (surprise).
I say yes I am, and routinely point to my wedding ring. Funny how no one notices! Maybe it's a guy thing. Maybe I need a flashing one or something.
Last week this happened again. After explaining the reason for the engagement ring and the wedding band- how they're different and which one you give first- one of the boys asked me if I loved my husband.
I said yes, I do love him.
No, do you really love him?
I said yes, he's a great guy.
Then he said do you really think you'll be together forever? Like honestly?
First of all, I find it intriguing he wanted to know. I don't know his family history or if he comes from a broken home but I know he told me he never wants to get married.
To answer his question, I paused. No one has ever asked me that before.
I replied with a yes, I do believe that.
He questioned my responsewith a squinting of his eyes and the cocking of his head.
The divorce rate is astronomical. Who gets married and truly commits to be together 'til death due you part anymore? It's more like "I commit to you until you stop fulfilling my needs or I simply change my mind." (I do understand the legitimate need for divorce, especially Biblical reasons such as adultery, etc) However; I hear of MANY couples splitting up over reasons that aren't found in the Bible. Christian and non-Christian couples alike. Life happens, I get it. We make mistakes and we make choices.
I've been thinking about this conversation all week. Do I really believe we will be together forever? I'm terrified to commit to anything FOREVER.
What a scary word!
What if he hurts my feelings? What if we lose the love and passion? What if I'm no longer physically attracted to him?
The answer is I committed myself in front of God and my family. I stood up on a stage in front of my younger siblings, who I would do anything for, as they heard me make a promise. Probably the most serious promise I will ever make in my lifetime; to love and honor this man despite the ebbs and flows of life.
We are "young", we are "in love", but we are also committed, loyal, and trusting in the Lord and his design for our marriage.
I hesitate to share these thoughts with all of you because I know marriage and divorce are sensitive subjects for some. I sympathize with all the pain the loss of a marriage uncovers. I have seen it in my family and with my closest friends. Mourning the end of a marriage is like mourning the death of a loved one. Something living, breathing, and sacred dies and the loss is felt in a heavy way. The good news is God brings beauty into all darkness.
If I could go back in time and compose a more thoughtful answer to this young man, I would say some of those things.
I want him to know that marriage can be beautiful. In fact, it was designed to be beautiful. I want him to know how the Lord's love is a great model for love in a marriage. How in forgiveness there is freedom.
I wish I could always be prepared with a thoughtful, inspiring, God-filled answer; alas, I am human. Maybe next time.