Today I want to write about marriage. I will actually start by writing about the time before marriage. How do you communicate then? I know that there could be a difference between those that are Christians and those not believing in Christ. It should be a difference. In our society where I live, they do not wait long before they sleep together and it is quite common to move together before marriage. The Bible says that sex belongs to marriage.
Some couples are so involved in having physical contact that they forget to talk together. I believe that it is very important to be open and honest with each other from the very beginning of a relationship. A marriage cannot be solely built on emotions. What is important for me in life? What is my first priority? Should we have children and how many? Where and how should we live? Should both of us work? How much time do I need for myself and together with my old friends? What kind of love language do we have? How do we solve conflicts and disagreements? As Christians it is important to talk about your faith. What kind of church should we go to? Must we attend the same church? I have lately heard of quite a few couples having this as an area of conflict. This is just a few of the things you need to talk about.
Have you read the Bible together and prayed together? Have you been seeking the Lord for your common future? What does the Lord want with your life? If one is called to be a missionary and the other doesn’t want to leave the country, I do not think that God has called them to be one. You do not need to have the same gifts of The Spirit and to be used exactly the same way in the Kingdom, but you need to go in the same direction.
You also need to talk about each other’s weak and strong points. I know a man that was suffering from depression off and on and he really wanted his future wife to know about that. She chose to enter marriage with him, but it has not always been easy. They have been able to seek the Lord together. My theory is that those who pray together, stay together.
Another thing that they need to talk about is your expectations for marriage. Some people think that all old problems will disappear and life will get easy. Others are afraid and may have had bad experiences with the opposite sex. It is unrealistic to think that everything will be easy, but it is not right to mainly focus on the problems.
Marriage should be a life- long contract where one love each other and where one gives and takes.
I will mention certain episodes in the marriage. The first one has to do with sex. I am glad that there are still some Christian that do not have sex before marriage. I have had both men and women in counselling after they got married. One man was afraid that he wouldn’t be good enough since she had a lot of experiences before she got married. Other women found it painful and wondered if they did something wrong. It is very important that both talk to each other about these things and it is important that they say something about their sexual needs and enjoyment. These things can take some time before they function to the fullest. There are quite a lot of lies connected with sex. Be honest with each other.
When you are moving together, should you live in his or her apartment? Is it ok that the other part already has his or her things there? Do you have a need to have some of your things? I was in a home where the hobby of the man was all over, even in the bed-room. I helped her to take more space. We should give and take in a marriage, but no one should annihilate oneself.
If you buy something new together, who is choosing the place and the furniture? Some things will be decided by work and economical ability. I moved many years back together with my two adult daughters in Sweden. We all three had to say something about the common space we had together. What was important to us. We all had our own room, but shared kitchen and living room. We had two bathrooms. It turned out to be a variety of old and new things.
What is happening when a child is coming into the family? We know that a baby takes a lot of time and attention. I believe that some mothers get so close to the child that she forgets that she has a husband. Some men get jealous at the child. I believe that even a small child needs clear borders. I think that it should not wait too long before it gets a room by itself. Some children keep the parents busy for a long time before they go to sleep. I think that the parents should lay the child down, pray and sing and then say good night. If the baby cries for more attention, let it cry for some time. If the baby didn’t cry as long you were there, the crying is not dangerous. I just talked to a man saying how important it was that he and his wife had time together before they went to sleep.
Children should be a blessing and not a reason for divorce.
The Bible says that two people become one when they get married, but that doesn’t mean that they always should do the same things. I think that they should give each other some space, but do not stay too long away from each other or travel too much alone. I am thinking about all the evangelists and pastors falling in sin. We must not give room for the devil. I will continue with communication once more.
BE OPEN AND HONEST!