Have We Made Marriage Too Hard?
Sometimes I wonder if we’ve made marriage out to be more complicated than it needs to be.
After the decision to marry, we live life the best way we knew how. Sure, in our marriage, it is helpful that we have similar views on important topics such as faith, values, and family, But even then, marriage has simply been about learning to live with another for the rest of our lives. Forever isn’t burdensome because we take life one day at a time. If you spend time thinking about forever, you may never get through today.
I’ve always known life is complicated, but we don’t have to bring all of life’s complications into our marriage. We can choose to live, think, and act differently about marriage and remove some of the complexities that have possibly built up in our marriages.
I’ve viewed marriage and the challenges within it to be similar to our breathing. Breathing itself is important–and there is no question we need it for survival. But we don’t need to be making our breathing more complicated than necessary, and the same goes for our marriage. Similarly, I try to approach my marriage as something we will keep doing and ideally doing without making it harder than necessary..
As I reflect, the only way I have been able to make our marriage simple and strong is through scriptural foundations I have chosen to take in and apply.
John 15:4-5 provides the antidote for ‘big deal’ thinking. It says abide in me, and you will bear much fruit; and marriage is not exempt from abiding and being fruitful. As we abide in Jesus through His word and daily surrendering our will and way to Him, allowing the Holy Spirit to guide and control us, we think and act differently, producing Godly fruit.
With a simple view and strong foundation of marriage, I’ve found three key verses to help me apply and live out marriage that doesn’t have to be ‘too hard.’
First, I chose kindness as embodied in Ephesians 4:32. “Be kind to one another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, as God in Christ forgave you.” I am convicted by this verse daily because if God can forgive me, I surely can forgive my husband who I love. I’m able to love because God loved me first. So this dynamic ensues – Christ loves us, and we love each other. We out love each other and live. It’s that simple!
Second, I walk by faith, not by sight (2 Corinthians 5:7 ESV). In marriage, faith plays out over and over again in the form of believing the best for each other and ultimately trusting God with each other as we navigate circumstances.
Third and perhaps most importantly, I choose to think differently about marriage. Do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewal of your mind, that by testing you may discern what is the will of God, what is good and acceptable and perfect (Romans 12:2 ESV). My thoughts have changed because of my relationship with Christ. I approach marriage differently, not naively but with Godly discernment.
These verses are second nature to me, becoming my lived reality. Like breathing, marriage is important, yet doesn’t have to be overcomplicated. I’ve learned to take it one step at a time with God’s help.
Editor’s Note: When marriage is hard, it’s hard! Please know we see you and are here for you, as we are living and navigating marriage ourselves. While this post may challenge or help reframe your thoughts on marriage, it by no means is shared to make you feel like something is ‘wrong’ if your marriage is hard. This is precisely why we are here for you at A Wife Like Me! Please also know, iff you feel like you are suffocating within your marriage due to any mental illness, infidelity, addiction, abandonment, or abuse, please read these articles and read this book.
Wife Step: Spend more time nurturing your relationship with the Lord. Memorize the key bible verses above and make them a part of the fabric of your life. Then, ask God to help you live them out in your marriage.
Nylse Esahc is a Christian wife and a mother of four who loves life and inspiring others. She recently published her first book – My Best Marriage Advice. She likes to have fun but is very clear on who she is and Whose she is. A prolific thinker, she blogs to encourage others from a Christian perspective at www.lifenotesencouragement.com. She can be found online on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram.