I’m getting to that age, that age where your friends start pairing off into couples and becoming married. Do not worry, this post is not about how mortified I am that I am still single and how there’s no end in sight. Instead I want to say something about the incredible commitment that marriage is.
I can think of nothing more beautiful and more terrifying than marriage. If you’re a Christian, then, in theory at least, marriage is for life. The certainty you must have to make that commitment… I think I might have to wait till I’m a hundred before I am that certain about anything (except death and taxes).
Marriages do not always last. When you enter into one, you must (even if you are a Christian) be aware that it may end prematurely. That does not mean you should not try. And marriages that do not end in divorce, end in death. There must be no greater grief (except the loss of a child) than the loss of your life partner. If you’re a woman that is most likely what you will experience (women live longer and marry younger), but men are not exempt of course.
Still, a life shared is a beautiful thing. I am thinking beyond the wedding and the honeymoon. It is in every day’s living, in the little joys, in the dull, the dreary, in toil, strife and hardship, that a marriage is built. It is in saying “I love you” every day, to mean it even if you’re in the middle of a heated argument.
Marriage is not a cure for a lonely life. It does not make a broken person complete. But it does, sometimes, make of two people, a single being, inseparable, a force of joy and love and an inspiration to all. It is truly a gift from God (one that like a plant must be nurtured if it is to last). I hope that all my friends who are married and soon to be married (and those who will marry later) experience this gift.
I wrote this poem for you:
Love is grand – it deserves a festival and a honeymoon and a yearly anniversary romantic dinners and flowers and gifts perfume and makeup Love starts with a beating heart and sweaty palms with grandiose gestures but it is in everyday things that love is made complete in two lives that become in every day’s living a life shared in little joys in leaving for work in weekday dinners in the love (or hate) of football in the dull, the dreary in shopping in the choice of asymmetric carpets and paint in toil, strife and hardship in paying the bills together Love is quiet and unrelenting its strength is the strength of God its weakness is the weakness of man love matures with its hosts becomes the finer for their wrinkles and frailty Love is a gift from God