“Next I will say, ‘If your faith makes you brave, please stand before the altar to make your vows,’” the priest said to my brother and his bride to be at their rehearsal. He stopped himself and explained, “I’m not saying this tongue in cheek. Marriage is a brave sacrament. It’s not for the faint of heart.”
As I sat in that pew I thought of the risk that marriage is, and how brave the choice to get married really is.
As well as a couple knows each other, they don’t know what the future holds. Job losses or changes, home repairs that cost too much, infertility, problems with in-laws, children with special needs, and a whole host of other unpredictable bends in the road a couple can face.
I know six years ago when I said “I do” I didn’t know we would experience a bout of infertility, home repair headaches and more sleepless nights than I can count. However, I also didn’t realize the immeasurable joy that would come from making the commitment to love Adam for better or worse.
When I said “yes” to him that day, I didn’t have a crystal ball to tell me what the future would hold, but we both believed that marriage was forever. We both knew that in some way, shape or form we’d have rough days, weeks, perhaps even years, but that we each understood precisely what was meant by the vow, “until death do us part.”
And knowing that, having faith in that, gave me courage to stand before God and another 275 people and give my life to Adam. It was my entire life, from that day forward. I didn’t say, “You can have it for now, but in five years we’ll reevaluate,” or “You can have all of me only if you do the dishes each night.” No, on our wedding day I jumped both feet first into the sometimes calm and clear, and other times murky and rough water that is marriage. And importantly, we recognized that meant we’d work through those waters together.
In those weeks leading up to my wedding I spent some serious time thinking about if marrying Adam was the right decision for me. I had to. Such a serious commitment required serious consideration of who a person is, how a person acts, and the relationship.
But in the end I decided that there was no one better suited for me than Adam, and that no matter who I married, the unknown would always exist. Come what may, we were going to commit the entirety of our lives to one another. We decided to be brave.
Photo Credit: HLP Photography
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