I've been married for almost 4 years. Here are couple things I'v learned about Christian marriage.
You don't get married because you love someone
Before you say 'What!?', read what I mean. In a "worldly" view of marriage love, being in love and loving someone are the reasons to get married. Marriage and weddings, per se, are a manifestation of 'I love you'.
But from a Christian point of view, you get married so you can START loving. Loving, love and 'I love yous' are not something you feel - love is a decision - love is action. As 1 Corinthians 13:4-7 tells us:
4 Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. 5 It does not dishonor others, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs. 6 Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth. 7 It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres.
You can't love without God's help
Love is not a feeling of happiness or bliss. It can sometimes even feel awful or annoying. Why? The Bible says that we have deceitful hearts and in our natural state we don't seek God, instead we do bad things. And though I have given my life to Jesus, I am still just a person - I do bad things. For example I put my own needs first.
I have learned that God gently and patiently reminds me to love my husband. Especially in situations when it is natural to feel hurt, angry, selfish...
"God, help me to love my husband."
"I'm sorry" means more than "I love you"
Once again: "WHAT!?" Saying you're sorry can be hard. You have to swallow your pride. But when you say you love someone, it usually stems from a good feeling. And saying 'I love you' doesn't take anything from us. 'I'm sorry' on the other hand does. It proves that we have been wrong or done wrong. It humbles us - we have to admit that we weren't perfect.
This has been the hardest thing to me. Admitting and humbling myself before my husband, before my God - before myself.
My lovely sponsor, Robyn, has written several amazing posts about Christian marriage. I warmly recommend! You can find them HERE.