Christian Living, Marriage Life

Marriage Vows; What do they Mean?

Many people say I do without realizing there are a few things they ought to know before they walk down the aisle. A lady can get carried away as she fantasizes about her wedding day so much so she has little to no idea who she is getting married to. This is when you hear sentences like, he changed. This is not the same woman I married. Well, granted there will be seasons where a marriage will go through challenges but this should not be in the first three months of your marriage. I believe before you ever get married to someone, there are things you should know. Two things I will say; One, this is the first post concerning what you need to know before you get married. Look out for other posts. Secondly, DO NOT HAVE SEX BEFORE MARRIAGE. SEX WILL BLIND YOU. I will not address how fornication affects marriage in this post. I will write another post about this subject sometime in the near future.

Marriage is a Covenant not to be taken lightly

Marriage is a contract between two consenting adults who want to spend their lives together for ‘better or for worse, for richer or for poorer in sickness and in health til death does them part.‘ Very familiar vows as many people have stood together saying these sweet words to one another without putting much thought to what they mean. When I stood saying I do to my husband, I was not standing there looking all together lovely and contemplating on what those words exactly meant. I was looking at this man who was wearing his white tuxedo, feeling very blessed, ready to go for our honeymoon in the woods. I don’t even remember what the pastor talked about. The truth is, people do not think of what those words mean. But it is important to think about the vows.

For better or for worse? It means there are seasons you will go through in life as a couple that are meant to break you and if you don’t present a united front to fight whatever is assailing you, you will not make it. If you are in a relationship and you look at that man or that woman,  can you stand together and fight because I promise you the enemy will come after you. He is after marriages. If you cannot answer this question about the man or woman in your life, then you need to think hard before getting married because you don’t want someone who bails out on you when tough situations present themselves. If you are not in a relationship yet, two things to keep in mind; birds of a feather flock together. In other words, if you don’t have the same principals and values, then you are not going to flock together. If you are born again and he is not or vice versa, you are simply not going to be in the same book let alone the same page. That is just the truth. Therefore both of you cannot present a united front against the enemy because you are not reading from the same script. Picture two people standing on two different paths. They cannot walk together. Even if they start at the same time, something will always keep them apart.
For richer or poorer? I heard a lady say this sentence this way. For richer or richer. I don’t know what her reasons were but I found that funny. Unless you get married to a millionaire, both of you will have to start from somewhere. It is wonderful to build wealth together. The experiences you go through really build you. You grow as a couple. You learn to be good stewards of what God has given you. There is a couple who say they went through a time when they were poor. They had nothing to their name apart from their clothes. They were sleeping in someone home on the floor. Now they have money and are living a good life but they said during that time when they were poor, they learnt to love each other more. In fact, the husband says that he loves his wife even more because when he had nothing, she loved him. That is what this means. Because life can happen and as wife, you will have to be the one who encourages you husband because he can easily beat himself down. Why? He is the provider and he is not providing at the time. He can feel like a failure. So my question to you, when you look at the woman or man you are with, are you prepared to go through money situations if they ever present themselves because chances are they will. My mother told me that when I was a very little, they did not even have money to buy me a doll. That’s life. No one ever starts at the top. Take time to discuss money in your relationship. It is important.

In sickness and in health. One day, a certain lady wanted to know whether whoever she was dating was the one. She kept feeling like she had made a mistake but she was not sure. So she asked God to show her. Now, let me say she was very beautiful. God answered her prayer by causing her to have an infection on her face which completely affected how she looked. What do you think the man did? Yap he bailed out. He did not want to be with her. Soon after he left her, her face cleared. He shamelessly tried coming back to her. Her prayer had been answered. The truth is in the trying moments of sickness, can you handle being with that person? Can you go above and beyond to love and care for the person you say you love? It may not be him or her but one of your children. There are families dealing with children who have challenges. Many years ago I worked at a facility where I saw first hand how hard it is to be with children who are mentally and/or physically challenged. Some couples are not able to stay together because of these challenges but some couples have made it.

Til death do us part. According to the American Phycological Association, About 40% to 50% of married couples in the United States divorce. That means 40-50% never get to this place called till death do us part. People divorce for a number of reasons including finances, infidelity, stress and so on. For those who have been through divorce, some say it is worse than death. I heard a woman put it this way; when people get married they become one and when people are separating, it means taking that body and separating it into two. She said it is very painful and it takes the God to heal. Many are the children who are still dealing with wounds and scars because of divorce. Many are the children dealing with their own divorce because they came from broken families. To be perfectly honest, this to me is one of the major reasons people should think really hard before getting married. People wed in a hurry only to bring a child into this world who has to deal with a whirlwind of emotions. I was listening to a couple who said, divorce has never been an option for them. It has never been on the table. As far as they are both concerned, marriage is so important to them that it outweighs other things they are doing in their lives. In other words, you cannot put marriage on a weighing scale with anything else.

Whatever stage in life you are, whether you are in a relationship or not, take time to think hard what these vows mean. Sit down and have discussions on what it means to share a life together because once you sign that contract, getting out of it is difficult. It affects every area of your life. It is emotionally draining and can be financially draining in some cases. Make sure you go for premarital counselling so that you know what you are both walking into. Do not walk into marriage because you are desperate; because you need someone to have, to hold you and make you feel good in bed. When that person is treating you without respect, you will not enjoy sex. Ask God to guide you. Truly depend on God concerning your future spouse. Turn over your desperation to Him. Be very open with Him about your feelings and allow Him to speak to you. If you let go and let God, He will surprise you.

©Martha Macharia
Author of Waiting for a Husband, The Godly Way

President of Woman Transformed


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