From the Married Folks

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Recently, I had the pleasure of welcoming my wonderful mentor and her husband over to speak to my lifegroup about marriage.

Let’s be real. It’s been engrained in all of us ladies’ minds since, well, forever. We dream about the day we begin this journey, the dress we will wear, Mr. Perfect, and building a life together. We listen to romantic music, watch chick flicks and dream of our own big day. I am no exception, as a self-proclaimed hopeless romantic. Whoops.

Proof: I have three Pinterest boards. Two are secret so people don’t think I’m crazy. ;P

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It seems today’s view of marriage is slightly cynical, questioning whether the piece of paper means something great, or nothing at all. To me, because of my faith, it is a beautiful expression of Christ’s love for the church. Sure, it can be hard, but it can also be wonderfully exciting.

Here’s an insider’s look to a couple of the questions we had for them. They’ve experienced some of the worst times and some of the best times, yet their answers were honest, real and clearly exhibited how God was at the complete center of their relationship, even after many many years of being together. What a dream!

I’ve added my own commentary, although the responses are directly from the source 😉

How did you know she was “the one”?

Him: “I didn’t.”

The beauty in this answer shows that there is always an element of faith in pursuing a relationship. Start with the physical, emotional, spiritual attraction, and trust that God will be present instead of trying to make it happen on your own.

What advice do you have for single women?

Become the woman and wife you want to be, now. Don’t wait. Your life doesn’t begin on your wedding day, girl. Far from it! It has already begun, don’t wish these valuable experiences away waiting for the next season of life to begin!

Invest in other people. Instead of focusing on what you don’t have, focus on the wonderful people God has given you now. Remember that part about practicing the wife you want to be now? This is it! If you want to be that faithful, caring, nurturing wife, start by developing those skills now with healthy friendship relationships.

How did you help each other deal with grief, loss and stress?

Him: Give them permission and freedom to process.

Her: Just be there for them, without saying a word. “I will be there for you no matter what.”

This couple is one of the few I know in my life who have dealt with the loss of their own child. Something I could never imagine. As men and women, extroverts and introverts, internal and external processors, we deal with grief and stress quite differently! Be intentional about finding how your spouse processes and give them the freedom to do so, while reminding them that you’re in it for the long haul, NO MATTER WHAT.

What should I look for in a future spouse?

Him: “Someone who will protect, provide and make your dreams come true.” “Don’t marry a wounded puppy.”

I love love love this first statement. It absolutely sums up the emotional, physical and spiritual needs we have as women. The second is equally great for us overly caring women. We can’t save the lost man. Just like they can’t save us. It is 100% a two-way street, and we each have to be healthy, whole people to be able to give it our all.

What challenges have you gone through and how did you seek God in it?

Him: Don’t pray for the easy way out. God will get you a way out of the suffering. Ask what He wants you to learn.

Her: Moving! Take the leap and let God use you.

Read James 1 for more on suffering. It’s never easy. God even guarantees it. But that’s exactly why we NEED Him!

Hearing the wise tales of a hard, wonderful marriage gives me so much hope for the future! Marriage doesn’t have to be terrible and defeating. It doesn’t have to mean ditching all your single friends for double dates. It is SO MUCH MORE than a single day and a single white dress. But it can be a beautiful, challenging, partnership seeking God together for the rest of your lives! Bring it on.

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❤ Stephanie

from the married folks


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