Extra Virgin :: Is Your Marriage Easy or Hard?
I read two unrelated blog posts in the past month that I can’t get out of my head. One was a quote from Seth Rogen and the other was a piece written by a missionary and counselor in Southeast Asia.
In movies they like to portray marriage as like, “Oh, the wife and husband are always arguing and bickering”…With me and my wife, the easiest part of my life is my marriage. Like if everything was as smooth and easy and fun as my relationship with my wife then I would have a much easier time getting through the day. We really get along and we like the same stuff. —Seth Rogen
How do you describe your own marriage? Often, the first word I hear people say is “hard.” And after they say “hard,” they quickly follow up with, “but it’s good.”
Now, think about your relationship with your best friend. How would you describe that relationship?
Would you say, “Our friendship is…
Would you call it “hard, but good”? Honestly, what would you think of someone who spoke of their closest friendship, first and foremost, as hard? Um, weird. —Jonathan Trotter
I was struck by the simple, honest confession of a happily married man and then taken aback by the observation that while many people characterize their marriage as mostly “hard,” that’s kind of, well…weird.
Marriage was created by God to give us a glimpse of the relationship between Christ and the church, a relationship full of acceptance, peace, grace, joy and beauty. While the melding of two sinful humans will definitely yield some hardship and suffering, this is by no means the purpose, nor should it be the holding pattern for any marriage.
We can even spiritualize our tumultuous relationships. Trotter goes on to say—
You know, sometimes marriage is hard because we’ve got issues that need to be worked on. But instead of acknowledging the emotional pain, or the fear of intimacy, or the past offenses, we deflect and avoid, consoling ourselves, “Well, at least it’s making me holy.” This is not God’s plan for marriage.
If you’re living in a marriage that’s mainly just “hard,” then I encourage you to seek help to address and overcome the pain, fear or sin that’s standing in the way of your loving, happy friendship with your husband. Or perhaps it’s just a matter of believing that marriage can be more than a steady simmer of frustration and actually be a source of great comfort, peace and joy.
With that in mind, the next few weeks we’re going to look at ways to foster a happy marriage. Hope you check back in next Monday and join in the conversation.
Much love, Aanna
(Photo via Stylist)