Marriage is the hardest ministry you can serve in because it asks a 24/7 commitment from you for life.
When we get married, we show up as our best and most hopeful for the future. We have expectations of how life is going to go. We think we’ll be nothing like the couple that fights and we’ll just live in wedded bliss for eternity.
While that’s true, you can live in wedded bliss for eternity, it takes work.
Real work that is messy and complicated. Marriage forces us to come face to face with the ugly and sinful parts of ourselves so we may be better.
Marriage forces us to turn to God for help because we are no longer living this life alone. We are partnered with someone. We are probably raising children with that someone.
Due to the intense nature of raising a family and walking alongside someone for the next 50+ years, we are challenged to shift our reality. We are coupled with someone who is impacted by our decisions and desires. We cannot act in selfishness or the other person suffers.
While we are not responsible for ensuring our partner’s happiness, we can bring them joy. We can do things that make them happy for a moment but we cannot sustain their happiness. It’s up to them.
At the same token, we are capable of bringing sorrow. We are capable of acting in the sinful human condition and hurting the person we love.