Last month was our 5 year Wedding anniversary. In 5 years a lot happened, we bought a house, had 2 kids, my husband started a business and many other things happened along the way. It’s been a great 5 years, we have grown in love with each other more and more and have grown closer to each other and God, and of course as any marriage does its has its ups and downs, struggles and growth spurts. But through it all I have come out being reminded, that no matter what happens in your marriage, when days are amazing and when days are tough and when days are totally normal, when you feel close to each other and so far away, when everything seems perfect and when you are just plain tired, your marriage is still a GIFT. A gift from God. It’s not something to be just taken for granted or get used to. Yet how easy is it to forget that, 1 year, 5 years, 10 years, 20 years down the road.
Right now my daughter Kara is in a blessed season, she seems to be constantly showered by gifts from her grandparents, from us, or from close friends and she hasn’t even had her 3rd birthday yet! But every time she is presented with a gift, she has a choice.
Sometimes she replies “Thank you Mummy, you are so sharing to me” (I think she means caring…!) and she seems really pleased with the something I have given her, whether it be ice cream, or unicorn socks. She holds on tight to it and talks about how amazing it is over and over, and wont share it with others or be seen anywhere without it! She loves it!
But sometimes, and ever so bluntly, when the present isn’t quite what she expected, or not what she hoped for, or it doesn’t work as well as she thought it would. She will say “It’s OK mummy, I don’t need this.” And I can be left feeling punched in the stomach, after I spent time to think about and choosing the gift.
And you only need to walk into her room and see all the neglected stuffed toys, characters, books, blocks, endless things that have been loved for a glorious moment and then left. Sometimes to be picked up and played with for a while, and then forgotten for a week or two, until its next usage.
Sometimes I feel like we can act like this with the gift of marriage, its amazing at first, we are so in love with the other person, they can do nothing wrong, we want to go everywhere with them, and do everything with them, we cant stop talking about them. But then somewhere along the line that honeymoon period wanes, and the real marriage begins. The commitment that we made to love one another, no matter what.
Don’t get me wrong, marriage is amazing, I love being married, I love being married with a man who with together we can look to God to pursue our dreams. I love growing together, falling in love with each other more, having fun together… the list is endless.
But the truth is, life isn’t all flowers and butterflies everyday. Problems arise, insecurities, things we don’t agree on, difficulties, weakness, tiredness, our everyday lives get in the way and marriage can just be plain hard at times.
So hard that its easy just to leave our ‘marriage’ in a room and not deal with the issues for a few weeks, its easy to just brush the problems aside, to get frustrated and walk out, to give up on that area as ever being resolved. To mutter ‘I’m tired’ under our breath as we leave the room. Maybe you feel that way sometimes too…
Yes Marriage is a gift, but it doesn’t always come easy. Every time I have a fight with my husband, I can choose to hold it as bitterness against him, not confront it and keep it inside where it might just disappear eventually. Or I can give it to God and let go and think how I can make the most of this gift. I have a choice to view it as a gift.
I want to honor the gift of Marriage God has given me and make it better, make it stronger and build it up, not bring it down or let the issues and problems pile up, so it becomes like an old pile of toys that never get used anymore, or sorted through because it just seems too messy.
God gives us this gift of marriage because he wants to bless us with it, it shouldn’t all be hard work! Just like when I give Kara a gift, I hope she will love it to bits and use it over and over again, and it will be something she treasures. God, also hopes we can treat our marriage well and love it to bits, through all the seasons.
How can i do that? Well it starts from now, from before the problems pile up, it starts today. By making the choice daily to view my marriage as a gift and be committed to loving it and growing it. Not waiting for my husband to make the first move, but making the move myself.
- Daily I need to make a choice to grow in myself so that my marriage can grow.
- Daily I need to forgive.
- Daily I need to decide to let go of some things.
- Daily I need to make a choice to sort through my problems, and our problems, not leaving them to when I feel like it.
- Daily I need to say thank you God for this glorious gift.
There are so many things I can do daily to make my marriage better. But letting go of bitterness, making the choice to be committed to growing in myself and my marriage, and be thankful to God and to my husband are key. I want to continue to treasure this gift God has given me for the next 5 years and beyond. And that starts with making great decisions daily in my marriage.
What do you do daily to honor the gift God has given you?