“For Better, For Worse”

When we stand at the altar and say those words to our spouse, I genuinely believe we mean them. But when the “worse” times hit, it’s funny how quickly you realize that with all the best intentions in the world, you cannot get through them without God’s help.

I know I have found that. My selfishness gets in the way, and I am quick to pray and wish for the “better” times to be back.

Although I know that there is no such thing as a ‘fair share’, and that everyone has issues in life, it can be easy to feel like my husband and I have had more than ours… We have struggled through serious illness, depression, unemployment, a lot of grief… It doesn’t seem like the life you expect to have lived by 24.

And yet many people struggle through much worse…

How do we all do it?

Colossians 3:13-15For us, we have found that the answer is prayer.

We did a lot of marriage preparation during our time of engagement. We went on courses, read books, talked to friends and family members. All of this has been immensely helpful to us during our marriage so far. But ironically, what has prepared us and helped us far more have been the bad times.

We weren’t together very long before we were married. But in that time we worked through a lot of issues together. We faced “worse” as well as enjoyed “better”. And so, when the bad times come (and they always do), we have a strong foundation on which to build. Because we have been there, and come out stronger and closer than before.

I am hopelessly weak. I am quick to be impatient, selfish and frustrated when things go wrong for us. But God is endlessly patient, kind and loyal. <– Tweet this! When we have remained close to Him, He has never failed to provide for us and help us to grow. And perhaps, even if it doesn’t feel that way a lot of the time, perhaps we have been blessed to know so much pain in so little time. Because the pain has forced us to our knees and prayer, and it has guided us to make decisions, to choose to get married, and to live out that marriage in God’s plan.

Elisabeth LeseurSo while I am not ready to wish for more pain, I will not curse God for the pain that has happened before now, because I know that the best of the “better” often comes after the “worse”.

May your marriage be blessed with joy and peace, but may the pain that inevitably happens to us all bring blessing, too. May God mold you and your spouse through the good and the bad. And may you know that it does get better, that those days when you feel the burden of sacrifice that marriage calls for, that those are the very days that will make your marriage the best it can be.

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