Following last week’s post on marriage myths, you must be thinking there cannot possibly be more myths out there. Don’t worry; there are just a few more to look at.
1. Physical intimacy happens all the time
Most people who get married look forward to getting physically intimate all the time, any time they feel like it. Well, for the first few months things may happen as you want them to, but once you start settling into the relationship and becoming more ‘real,’ there will be times that either you or your partner is not in the mood! In addition, other factors like sickness, separation due to travel, and complicated pregnancies make it hard to get physically intimate.
What do you do in such a situation? First, remember that intimacy has its seasons. During the dry seasons, you may need to find other ways to express your love to your partner. Remember, your role in marriage is to minister to your partner. Whatever your partner needs, you give. For physical intimacy to be satisfying, each party has to put their heart and soul into it.
2. You will always be in love
Reality check – you will not always be in love. There will be those moments when you do not want to see your spouse. You are however commanded to love your partner/spouse all the time. There are different types of love, and each type of love fits the season that your relationship is going through. Believe it or not, there are moments when couples even experience brotherly love. The key thing here is to accept the season that your marriage relationship is passing through, and ask God to help you love your partner more.
3. You will never want to quit.
Quitting a marriage passes through every person’s mind at one point or another – that is the sad truth. What you do with those feelings, however, makes the difference. Why do you want to quit? Have you asked God to help you become a better spouse? Are you willing to forgive your spouse for any wrongs?
As much as many people say they want to quit their marriages, few do so. If you are in a place where you are considering calling it quits, explore all avenues before finally walking out, because once you leave, you can’t go back to the way things were.
A friend of mine shared a little of her marriage experience with me, and I found that what she shared is relevant to today’s discussion. Here is Maryanne’s brief take on marriage.
“When John and I got married, I didn’t know I had issues with rejection, from my relationship with my father and my ex-husband (she left him due to infidelity). Long before John and I wedded, John had started teaching me about the Word of God, and how to read it. After our wedding, we established a routine of praying and reading the word together daily, as we had agreed that our marriage would be founded on God’s principles. As the challenges of marriage came along, the Word of God became my mirror and consultant. I turned to it regularly, on the good and bad days. John loved me, prayed for me and with me, and fed me spiritual food.
After I had our last child and went through post-partum depression, I was sure John would leave me. Instead, he would tell me that he loved me with all his heart and that he was not going anywhere. John regularly rebuked me for not believing in God and doubting his love for me. I needed to accept the love that God was showing me through my husband so that I could heal from all past hurts.
I am still God’s work in progress, to be perfected in maybe 50 years’ time, or when we go to heaven, but the Maryanne before John no longer exists. John’s obedience to God’s command to love me and nurture me has made me the woman that I am. Only a man submitted to God can love another the way my husband loves me. John is the priest of our home, and teaches both our children and me how to look into God’s word for teaching and guidance.”
Maryann and John’s view of and approach to marriage are what many couples need to adopt today. God is the author of marriage, and he gives us the blueprint on how to succeed in the Bible. The following verse from Ephesians gives a fitting conclusion to this discussion.
Ephesians 5:22-25 “For wives, this means submit to your husbands as to the Lord. For a husband is the head of his wife as Christ is the head of the church. He is the Savior of his body, the church. As the church submits to Christ, so you wives should submit to your husbands in everything. For husbands, this means love your wives, just as Christ loved the church. He gave up his life for her to make her holy and clean, washed by the cleansing of God’s word.” (NLT)