Till death do us part. Many have said the words; few have followed through. Why do people stray? Why do people fail to keep their sacred wedding vows made before God and witnesses?
Is it possible to stay faithful to one person for life or is it an overrated fairy tale? Most around me seem to feel it is an impossible endeavour. Today I would like to encourage an alternative solution to the breakdown of our family unit. What if we spent more energy on educating people how to have marriages they enjoyed being a part of?
I believe marriage is a beautiful thing that can serve as a foundation to stable families and happier people when done within the boundaries God created it to have. Ironically, boundary is a word that usually people associate with a lack of freedom and stifling of fun. Proverbs 16:25 states, “There is a way that appears to be right, but in the end it leads to death.”
Your colleague at work makes your heart flutter. Your spouse no longer has that effect on you. It SEEMS you should be happy so why not cheat and satisfy your burning desires? Suddenly, on the other side of the affair, when you find yourself in the dark shadow of shame, guilt, regret, and inner frustration, it doesn’t look so attractive. I would like to propose a solution that has been working for my husband and me for 15 years. CHOOSE to protect your marriage so that you GIVE yourself the gift of true pure happiness.
My goal in sharing these thoughts is to encourage couples to put the extra effort in and to hopefully foster the beginning of many more conversations we can have as a nation on working towards stronger families. Below are a few things we have seen effective over the years.
My husband and I CHOOSE EACH OTHER! It is a choice that starts in the mind. If thoughts of another man creep into my secret daydreams, I STOP and choose to be thankful for my man and force my mind to think of all the wonderful qualities he has. Grass is never as green as it seems on the other side. Life’s secret is to be content where you are planted!
Because I make an effort to daily train my thoughts to focus on his positive attributes, it becomes very easy to verbally praise him. I have made it a life mission to be his biggest fan. I want him to visualise himself the way I see him, so I find creative ways of daily encouraging him to be the man I am choosing to believe he is.
Since I am his biggest fan, I will never criticise him to others. NEVER! You will NEVER hear me say a negative word about my husband. If I have a problem with him, I will talk to him only about that problem! It has never solved anything for me to talk to anyone else about an issue I have with him. In fact, if you have ever had a prolonged conversation with me, you probably know I still gush about my husband like a school girl going on about her first crush! After 19 years together, daily he still amazes me!
We prioritise spending time together. This takes sacrifice and intricate planning on both our parts. With three children and running multiple companies, sometimes at the end of the day, it takes immense energy to rehash the day with each other. It is easier for him to watch sports or me to mindlessly scroll through Facebook than to put forth the effort. But we do. EVERY. SINGLE.DAY! We have observed other couples slowly drifting apart; it doesn’t happen overnight. Slowly they just lead two different lives. They share a roof but do not share the same interests, the same friends, or even the same life goals. They become glorified roommates but certainly not best friends and lovers. So we keep talking… sharing our fears, our goals, our frustrations, even the mundane details of business meetings or doing assignments with the kids.
We are life partners. Certainly our daily roles are defined and different, however, at any point if there is anything one of us can do for the other to lighten the load, we will gladly do it. We play for the same team and will work together to make sure we alleviate the excessive burdens life throws at us.
This means that if I am exhausted, my husband will gladly make dinner, make the school lunch, wash the dishes, or sit and do homework. Likewise, I have stayed up many a night binding tenders, running around town picking up the ridiculous amount of documents needed to comply with the tedious business regulations of this country, or tweaking a presentation he has to give the following day.
We are honest with each other. Nothing has time to fester into bitterness and resentment when issues are immediately brought into the light and communicated. We have observed the erroneous ideology that it would be better to keep quiet than to voice concerns. It never ends well. Inevitably, erupting built up anger spews one day creating sometimes an irreparable mess or the hardened heart is accustomed to ignoring the pain for so long that one person simply no longer cares. They feel numb as apathy has settled where love once blossomed. We choose not to get offended and intentionally try to deny the natural desire to be right in an argument because unity and peace is our goal. We share what we are feeling and work together for solutions to prevent future hurts and pains.
We keep no secrets. We know each other’s friends. We have each other’s cell phone passwords and computer passwords and frequently use each other’s devices. We even share our bank account.
We literally have become as God intended when he proclaimed the two would become one. Over the years, we have even grown to enjoy the same leisure activities so most of our free time is even spent with each other. There is no part of his life I don’t have access to and the line between what is mine and his is so blurry that I don’t think it even exist anymore.
There’s a little peek into the Thaba marriage.