My first year of marriage…
Hey People! I hope you’re all good! I’m feeling great!
Last week on the 2nd of June my wife and I celebrated our first year of marriage… we thank God.
We have since sat down to reflect on what has been a rollercoaster of a year in many respects. If I had to sum it up in one word and being as honest as I can I’d have to use the word ‘challenging’, if you gave me three words I’d add ‘fun’ and ‘rewarding’.
I have learnt so much in this first year of marriage, so much about myself, so much about my wife and so much about life! Many things I couldn’t have prepared for, because I didn’t know they’d come my way. Many things are things I’d heard about, but never knew they’d be relevant to me, and some things I probably could have prepared for, but never thought they’d happen! Like I always say, “You don’t know what you don’t know”. I’d never been married before, and all I had were theories from books and advice I’d heard from preaching and some adults who were kind enough to share their thoughts and experiences with me.
However, there is no substitute to living it… I think now would be a good place to add a quote from Mike Tyson…
“Everybody has a plan, until they get punched in the face”
That’s the reality, until you get in and are actually married you don’t know how you’ll react or what you’ll face.
The biggest challenge when you initially get married is ‘self’. ‘Self’ refers to your‘SELF’. When you get married it is no longer about you, the key is to take your eyes off what you feel and want and focus on your partner.
Which is all good and well when you ‘feel’ like it… the challenge comes when you do not feel like it… AT ALL. When you are not in the mood, this is when love the verb has to kick in (I’ll speak about love the verb in one of my next few posts). When you make the decision to marry someone you are making a commitment to that person for life.
I’ve copied in the marriage vows below, so you can see the extent of the commitment that is made… before man and before God!
Do you GROOM’S NAME take BRIDE’S NAME to be your wife – to live together after God’s ordinance – in the holy estate of matrimony? Will you love her, comfort her, honour and keep her, in sickness and in health, for richer, for poorer, for better, for worse, in sadness and in joy, to cherish and continually bestow upon her your heart’s deepest devotion, forsaking all others, keep yourself only unto her as long as you both shall live?
The vows are DEEP and NOT to be taken lightly. (I think I’ll print them out and stick them on my bedroom wall). Have you ever wondered why all these different stipulations are mentioned? Sickness AND health, for richer AND for poorer, for better AND for worse, sadness AND joy? It’s because these are all conditions you are likely to experience in marriage and you are expected to be the same person, doing the same things throughout all these conditions… until you die! (or your partner does).
My wife and I have had some FANTASTIC times during this first year (Some of the best times and days of my life have been with my wife whilst married); we have also had some times that haven’t been so fantastic (Some of my hardest days and times have been since I’ve been married). I heard a quote on the radio this morning ‘Marriage is finding that one special person to annoy for the rest of your life’… it made me laugh because it is true in a sense. Whoever you marry will annoy you, but it’s the good times that make the bad times worthwhile.
One thing I can vouch for is that your marriage is what you make it, the ball is firmly in you and your partners court. You can have a great marriage that is a constant source of joy and strength… if you build it and put yourSELF to rest.
A good marriage is built over time, by going through trials together and coming out the other side – the same principle that builds strong friendships and family bonds. Without going through certain troubles you lack a certain appreciation for the good times. Like a famous rapper I used to listen to (before Jesus Christ saved my life though His amazing grace) once said ‘Joy wouldn’t feel so good if it wasn’t for pain, sunny days wouldn’t feel so special if it wasn’t for rain’.
For those who go gym, think about when you’ve had a good session and your muscles are finished, totally destroyed and you can’t even cream your face or scratch your head… it feels good!
Women when you are getting a weave done and the hairdresser is doing the cornrows underneath unless it feels a little tight you’re not happy, because it’s a sign it won’t last!
For those who have pounded fufu before, it tastes good knowing that you have worked for it, your sweat is IN the fufu… what a feeling! Haha!
What I’m trying to say is you’ve got to be prepared to build the marriage that you have in your head. This isn’t the movies, this is real life.
Movies always end once the couple get married, the day after the wedding day is rarely seen, there should be a movie that starts the day after the wedding… now that would be a film! That’s when life really starts!
The journey will be different for us all, depending on your past, and how much of yourSELF is in the way. The verse below is the key and if you can master it you’re on the road to marital bliss. (Alongside prayer, grace and determination)
Mark 12:30-31 – Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind and with all your strength.’ 31 The second is this: ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.’ There is no commandment greater than these.”
For those on the way to marriage, put this in your pocket for later.
For those already married! Keep going! Keep building!