Day 8 - CMBA Blog Challenge
"History of a Marriage"
The wedding was over.
I mentioned before that we probably should have been engaged for a much longer time. In reality, the honest truth is that if we were being wise, and if we were looking at our situation objectively, we probably should not have gotten engaged at all. Or once we were engaged, we should have broken off our engagement.
We started our marriage with some huge issues.
The majority of our relationship was long distance, which meant we had never spent long periods of time together.
I struggled with anger, reacting somewhat in a volatile manner when things didn't go my way.
I didn't trust him to be faithful to me and was constantly suspicious.
He struggled with controlling his consumption of alcohol.
He was determined not to change and to still live independently of me.
I had made our relationship into an idol.
Some of the people we chose to spend time with were negatively influencing our choices.
All of that is water under the bridge at this point so please don't think that I'm stuck in a rut of regret or that I wish we had never gotten married. God has been so gracious to us in pointing out sins, healing our wounds and changing our hearts. I know we would both say we aren't the same people that we were when we got married.
The first lesson we learned in our marriage and the first piece of advice I would pass on to another engaged woman is this: Don't ignore the red flags.
I realize that this is easier said than done. I realize that when your emotions are deeply involved and you have a strong connection to a man, it is incredibly hard to pull back. I realize that this is extremely painful. That everything in you might scream "NO! I LOVE HIM!" And you probably do.
But you aren't Cinderella, he isn't Prince Charming and there is no Fairy Godmother waiting to wave her magic wand over your problems and make them perfect.
I'm sure you've heard it before but any problems that existed before marriage will only be amplified after marriage, and it's true. It's also true that there will always be things to work out throughout your marriage, but it's just not a smart idea to begin marriage with extra issues to work out.
You aren't going to *just* la-dee-da love each other through it.
You aren't going to *just* talk about it.
You aren't going to *just* work it out.
To those of you who are engaged and this is your situation, just stop. Put everything on hold. Go get some premarital counseling and listen to what the counselor says. Be teachable. Allow yourself to be uncomfortable and to hear hard things. Confront the possibility that you might need to let go of the relationship, experience a lot of pain for a while in order to be wise and to have the possibility of a marriage that better exemplifies a Christlike relationship. If you sense a conviction from the Holy Spirit that the right thing to do is to end the engagement and call of the wedding, summon up every bit of guts that God has given you and do it! Truthfully, God may not ask you to not marry this man. It may just not be the right time. Throughout counseling, you may truly see genuine repentance and a mature attitude of working towards change with accountability. Allow an objective source to evaluate the situation and let you know if they think pursuing engagement again might be an option.
To those of you who married the guy anyway, there is hope. There is always hope. God is absolutely faithful and powerful and sovereign and compassionate. Do not think that your only option is to end the marriage and move on. You didn't make a mistake. Don't allow the marriage to continue one moment longer without getting help. Summon up every bit of guts that God has given you and seek out a biblical counselor or a godly Titus 2-style mentor. When you find someone to help you, listen to what that person says. Be teachable. Allow yourself to be uncomfortable and to hear hard things. It might take a lot of work and it might take a lot longer than you wish. Persevere, my friend. You're a Warrior Wife.
Rejoice in hope, be patient in tribulation, be constant in prayer.
(Romans 12:12 ESV)
Sharing with: The Better Mom, The Alabaster Jar, Graceful, The Wellspring, NOBH, Matrimonial Mondays, Marriage Monday, Lowercase Letters, Grace Laced, Seedlings in Stone, Time Warp Wife, Growing Home, Far Above Rubies