If there were a law today dissolving all marriages and you were given the freedom to start life afresh, what would you do? See if you can answer these questions:
1. Would you like to marry the same husband or wife that you now have?
2. Would you go in for someone else?
3. Are you satisfied with your spouse?
4. Is your marriage a happy one?
5. Are you proud of your spouse and thankful to God for him or her?
6. Do you think your spouse would choose you again?
7. Is your spouse happy with you?
8. Does your spouse enjoy living with you?
9. Does your spouse see you as a good partner in marriage?
Undoubtedly, if given the opportunity to start life anew, there are many people who would go in for the same spouse. This means they are happy in their spousal relationship. There are men who would fight fiercely if someone threatened to take away their wife. Also, there are women who would fight tooth-and-nail to keep their husband. They love the man and are ready to die for him.
Yet, there are others who would not look at their present spouse if given a chance to start life afresh. They would immediately jump to someone else. This is because although they are husband and wife, they are husband and wife only in name. They are just two people living together. There is no love binding them. What binds them is nothing but their marriage certificate. This is unfortunate and also strange because they loved themselves passionately at the start and were ready to die for each other.
“Then,” you may ask, “What went wrong? Why do they not want to see each other again? Why would they be against each other and live more or less like enemies in the same house?”
Many marriages are like this. It will start off very well, but soon it will be on the rocks. Often, you find a boy and a girl very anxious to become married to each other, but no sooner are they married than they are at loggerheads, no longer wanting to see each other. This is curious. Why would a boy and a girl be dying for each other, swearing they would die if they do not get married to each other, but when they finally do, it does not take long before problems begin to rock their relationship? If it is not the boy who threatens to throw out the girl’s things so that she may go, it is the girl who threatens to park and leave. Questions keep coming up:
Why are many marriages full of problems and devoid of happiness?
Why is it that a great many couples do not live in peace?
Why are most couples most of the times opposed to each other?
Why do many couples behave as if they hated each other?
Instead of being havens of peace and harmony, many homes are fertile ground for blame, anger, and quarrels. They are boxing rings where husband and wife exchange hard blows on a regular basis.
It is common to hear people describing marriage as a hell, swearing they would never marry? Can marriage be such a burden or hell that some people hate it so much?
Marriage is not supposed to be a burden nor a hell. But some people make it both a burden and a hell. They make it hateful; something to escape from. Marriages of low quality abound while happy marriages are rare.
The institution of marriage is truly under great pressure today. We are told that in most countries of the world, 50% of marriages end in separation and divorce. Divorce is expected to reach 70% before long. Must that be so? Is there nothing we can do to change the trend? The answer is there is much we can all do to help couples make their marriages successful.
There is good reason for this. When marriage is a hell, the home becomes unlivable for the family. Husband and wife begin to wonder why they married each other at all. They begin to regret and the purpose of marriage is defeated.
Marriage is meant to be enjoyed. It is meant to be fun. In fact, it is supposed to be a heaven on earth. The one who instituted marriage meant it to be so. We are the ones who do not know how to make it so. Yet, the rules are very clearly spelled out. All we need is to respect them and our marriage will be as enjoyable as we like it to be.
No one will do it for us. We must do it ourselves. We do not have to wait for or expect any other person to do it for us. Our spouse will not do it alone neither can we do it alone. It takes both husband and wife, working together, to do it.
In fact, if our marriage is not making us very happy, then it is not doing for us what it is meant to do. Marriage is meant to make us very happy. It is our duty to make it do for us what it is meant to do.
There are many things we do that make marriage not to be enjoyable. One of them is taking the marriage lightly. Marriage, being a lasting union between two people, it needs to be taken seriously. We also need to work hard and sacrifice to make it succeed. We need a number of tools to make it a happy experience. Unfortunately, many people go into marriage thinking it should automatically succeed; that when a boy and a girl get married they should automatically be happy and live successfully. This is not true.
Like every other thing, we manage our marriage well only if we have learned how to do it. Nobody can be a good builder if he has not learned how to build. Who can do good carpentry, teaching, tailoring or whatever without having been trained? If we want to do anything well, we must take time and learn how to do it. Marriage is no exception. Hence, it is important for us to learn how to make our marriage successful and happy.
There is the know-how of marriage which if learned and applied, will make the said marriage happy and successful; full of fun and joy. This is what God meant marriage to be. God did not intend that marriage should be a cause of tears, suffering and sorrow. There are tools to enable you and your spouse to show more love to each other and to successfully handle the differences that come up between you. If you learn these tools and use them to the best of your ability, you will see a wonderful transformation in your marriage.
This does not mean that your marriage shall be problem-free. There is no marriage that is problem-free. We have to learn how to manage the problems that come up. If we do not manage them well, they will destroy our marriage.
It is a good thing for husband and wife to both learn what it takes to make their marriage happy. If only one person is doing the right thing, it will not help much because unless the other person co-operates much cannot be done. It takes two fingers to remove meat from a pot. Therefore, both of you should acquire the tools together and apply them together.
It may be difficult if your spouse is among those people who think that they know all that it takes to make their marriage happy and have nothing to learn from whosoever. Yet, their marriage is not moving, and they are not having it easy. Such people need help.
That pride does not pay holds true for marriage as it does for other areas of life. We learn every day. The wise person is humble enough to learn from everyone he or she comes across. It is foolish to think that you already know it all and have nothing to learn from anyone else. Be humble; and willing to learn. There is much that you stand to gain when you are humble and open to learning.
To conclude, In fact, there is nothing as enjoyable as a happy marriage. When your marriage is happy, many things go well for you.