Love & Marriage

I am celebrating seven years of marriage this weekend to the man that was literally formed to match me like a piece of a puzzle. I had a list made up before I met Allen of all the things I knew I wanted in my husband but the miraculous thing was that God had a completely separate list and those things have been the things that have shaped our marriage and even brought healing along the way. I was thinking about what lessons I have learned so far...I say so far because it's only been seven years and I know there are way more coming. Would you like to know what they are? Well, of course you would!!! ;-)

Lesson 1: I married a human. Hey, don't laugh, it's a good lesson to learn. Sometimes we treat them as though they should be superhuman and we expect way more out of them than we even expect from ourselves.  My husband is not perfect and so I cannot expect him not to mess up. I remember being so in love in the beginning that I actually thought "there really isn't anything about Allen that I don't like. He is pretty close to perfect." While he still is pretty close to perfect (love you babe!) I have learned that he isn't perfect. Don't let that be a disappointment in your marriage. "Oh, you are imperfect to? That's a relief." 

Lesson 2: Don't be a broken record! Allen knows what areas in His life he needs to work on. Telling him every chance I get doesn't make him work faster..it actually slows him down. It's only natural that I see the flaws more often than everyone else. I live with him! Given your spouse a safe place to grow. Keeping our mouth shut sometimes brings way more fruit than opening it! Besides, I have enough flaws of my own to work on without trying to fix his! 

Lesson 3: Learn your spouse's love language. Quality time speaks volumes to my husband. I am more carnal..I need gifts!!! HA! Seriously though, being aware of what speaks love to your spouse will bring a lot of harmony to your marriage. Sure, it takes work because rarely are the languages the same but it is worth the effort! My husband is treating me to a delightful weekend in Sedona for our anniversary and boy do I feel loved! He is giving this to me as a gift..and he will have my undivided attention for four days giving him all the quality time he can handle! Lots of love!!!! Of course we don't get these kinds of weekends on a regular basis but there are plenty of ways in my everyday life to show my love to Him. Knowing what he needs helps me find ways to show it! 

Lesson 4: Your spouse cannot heal your heart. This one is pretty serious. Might even be the most important lesson. So many marriages fall apart because both people have wounds and they want the other to "fix it". Our spouse is not God's solution to our heart ache. God is the solution. Our spouse is meant to hold our hand and walk with us towards our Savior. We can encourage each other, offer wisdom from God, pray together and just love each other but we cannot fix each other. Only God can see the depths of our heart and mend the broken pieces. 

Lesson 5: He is not your dad and she is not your mom!! This is a toughie. We bring our life story into our marriage and it's easy...really easy...to just start making comparisons. My husband is nothing like my father but I sure did assume he was in the beginning. Time helps with this one as well as being really honest. Talk about your past. Tell them everything. Tell them what happened, what didn't happen, why you think that, why that hurt, why you got angry. Make them your best friend! The more I do that, the less I compare the two. 

Lesson 6: Get a hobby! How boring would our marriage be if we didn't do fun stuff together?! I can list lots of  places we've been together, things we've done, and place we still want to go! That's the stuff our marriage is made of! It's important to do things that the other one likes and not just stuff you like! My husband and I love to try new food together. He loves to camp (I like it but not as much as him) and I love to SHOP! So..we do both! 

Finally, but not really the last thing, make grace the biggest attribute of your marriage. God has poured a whole lot of grace on me and so I must offer the same to my husband. Neither one of us deserve it..it is a gift given from above! Yes, sometimes our flesh gets in the way, but that's okay. (refer to lesson one) Our imperfection will lead to God's glory!

I am by no means an expert in the field of marriage and I know I have tons more growing to do but I am learning every day how to love my husband like Christ loves me. Marriage can be rich and full of life! Our society has instilled the false belief that it's no big deal if it doesn't work out. It is a big deal. Marriage is a covenant and we need to treat it as such. If you suffer hurt from a broken marriage believe that God is for you not against you! He wants to heal those hurts and he has grace beyond measure to give you. Let Him heal your heart and open doors for you to start anew.

 God constantly uses Allen as the tool to speak to me. That is the intention of marriage..to be a tool that brings us closer to God. I am so grateful for my man and my love for him runs deep. Believe me, I'm very human and so there are still bumps in the road but what we have is real and we will keep working hard to make it "durable"! I pray you do the same friends!

Happy Anniversary babe!!

Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud.....it always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres. (1 Corinthians 13:4-6) "


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