Tuesday, January 3, 2012

Don't Take Your Marriage for Granted

Today I read Hebrews 13 which is a hodgepodge of advice that Paul offers at the close of his epistle. It kind of reminds me of when we were teenagers and we would be leaving the house for a night out and our parents would give us about six or seven pieces of advice. Likewise Paul spends some time giving some last minute advice in his letter to the Saints.

The first one that stood out to me is that marriage is honorable for all. That one kind of surprised me. I had never before considered that some might consider that not getting married is better than to get married. Of course I was raised as a Latter-day Saint and know that marriage is essential for exaltation, but still I can't help but wonder why some people would think that marriage is not a good idea. I personally did not feel complete until I got married. I always felt like something was missing, and truly it was.

I was reading in the January 2012 Ensign an article about 10 things that happily married couples do and I was really glad to see an article focused on improving the quality of marriage. That is so important and it can be so hard to have a good happy marriage if one or both of the partners are unhappy. Recently my wife went through a tough time and even though she didn't mean to, she took most of her aggression out on me over the course of several days. Each day there was something new that I got in trouble for, sometimes it was the same thing just on a different day. But I remember on one of the days when she was laying into me about something that did not warrant that level of response I can remember thinking, "Geeze, no wonder people get divorced! If their spouse always treats them like this I can understand why you wouldn't want to stay married." Now, I never thought about getting divorced, despite how miserable those few days were, but it gave me a whole new understanding to how unhappy someone can be in their marriage.

I have been very lucky in my marriage that my wife has shared my vision to always try and put the needs and wants of our spouse ahead of our own and so my marriage has been extremely pleasant and enjoyable. And that is how marriage should be. Ideally it should be a happy experience for the two partners as they grow together and work towards becoming one in purpose and spirit with Heavenly Father. I feel very fortunate that I have a wife that wants me to improve and is willing to do just about anything to help me get there. I hope that those of you who are married have that in your life as well. I hope you don't take your spouse for granted but that you are able to recognize them for the support and love they give you. There are those in this life that all they want is a happy marriage, or to be married at all. For 7 years after my mission that was all I wanted was to be married, but it was withheld from me for 7 years. But all good things do come to those who wait. If you are in that boat now know that Heavenly Father will take care of you and will grant your righteous desires in due time. If you are married, remember to treat your spouse the way you treated them on your wedding day. Love them and treat them as if they are your whole world, because they should be. Until tomorrow.

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