About a month ago (do I ever blog ANYTHING in real time?) I posted a silly little thing about why i would/wouldn’t want to get married. Though it was mostly written in a spirit of levity, it revealed a certain truth, that i wasn’t sure there was a good reason to ever get married, at least not for me.
The Gentle One, who I’ve mentioned once before, wrote me about the post. She shed so much light on the situation that I wanted to share. She gave me permission. The following is our exchange: (her words are regularly formatted, mine are in italics)
I will still stick by my original thought that 99% of the time it is not like the first part of your post, but the bad things in the last part of your post are maybe not as bad as they seem. All in all, yes, marriage is hard, intentional work, day in and day out. It is living out the gospel when you feel like throwing in the towel. It’s realizing how to be unselfish (and even more so if kids come along!). It’s realizing why Paul said that it’s better to be single. It takes a LOT to be someone’s wife.
BUT the blessings are enormous. I mean, isn’t it crazy to imagine? Learning to be best friends and lovers at the same time?! Going to sleep together every night?! Creating life together?! Having a physical person to love and submit to, as to Christ?! So yes, it is worth it, absolutely. Looking more like Christ via the covenant of marriage is worth it.
For me, I’ll be honest to say that I (sinfully, ugly-heartedly?) have thought that most men I’ve ever dated have been guys I was “good for.” I made them better, they’d say, but I’m not sure I’ve ever felt like I pursued God better because of them. And so i’ve thought, “If I don’t love God BETTER with them in my life….then aren’t they just a distraction?”
And I’ve wondered if there would be a man who would make me better. Not because I think i’m perfect (although surely my self opinion is too high) but because i’m….so….odd…. and high maintenance and I’ve never really known a man who (in a romantic relationship) spurred me on further toward Christ.
But in my closed minded wonderings, I never considered (and thus the beauty of community) the sheer necessity of growth in Christ that occurs when a woman is committed to being a Godly wife. There’s no way to do that, to enter into a convenantal relationship of marriage, and NOT grow.
It may seem basic, but it blew my mind!
What you are saying about the essence of how and why you attract men is interesting. I do think that motivation for dating someone should be that they are marriage potential, and of course that should only be someone who IS spurring you on further toward Christ, not just someone you’re good for or vice versa.
Yes, you got it! God designed marriage to refine us! I think the gist of it is that although the blessings are abundant, so are the difficult parts. And just like Christ says we should count the cost before we follow Him, I think we should also count the cost before considering marriage, because there ARE costs. Which, it sounds like, is what you’re doing in weighing the good parts and bad parts. So good job, keep processing! :)
So what are your thoughts? Any contributions you want to make to the 50 or so people reading about this journey with you?