Marriage. New country. New language. Unemployed. Move away from family and friends. I’d say those are a lot of changes to do all in one year, let alone one day. Not only has it created stress in my life but it makes it more difficult to isolate which one of these factors is affecting the greatest amount of stress at any given moment.
Most of our dating life was long distance. Needless to say, we had a big learning curve once we began to share our lives together.
As Dietrich Bonhoeffer states, “There is a battle in the world that is without comparison, a war of the highest powers in which everyone is involved: the war of death against love, of love against death, two opponents that in their majesty are worthy of each other. but love is as strong as death (Song 8:6b), for love is from God…Death is strong in the world, but love is strong in eternity.”
As I look at marriage, I see how easily we can be short-sighted. We live for today. We want happiness…NOW. If we don’t find it, if it doesn’t come as quickly as our fast food delivery, we’re out. Done. It’s much easier to think that our spouse should be serving us than the other way around. Why do we not think of the long-term? Or about how today’s choices influence tomorrow’s lifestyle? My mom just told me of her friend, who was counseled by friends in her early days to leave her husband. He wasn’t “cutting it” by the Disney fairy tale standards. Yet, she choose to stick with him and keep her commitment to their marriage. Years later, when she developed dementia, she counted on her husband to daily visit and care for her. He was faithful when it mattered most until the day she died.
Jesus reminds us, “The thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy; I have come that they may have life,and have it to the full.” (John 10:10)
How can you choose your spouse today? Choose life to the full? Choose what Jesus promised?