Marriage and what I have learned from being married for 20 years

I got married June 17th 1995, it was a beautiful almost summer day, it was slightly overcast and a little bit humid out. What I remember most about that day is when I walked down the aisle and saw my husband to be in tears, I had to look away because I didn’t want to cry and ruin my make up. After our wedding, marriage was fun, but that only lasted a little while and then just like clockwork the honeymoon ended and reality kicked in. I had no idea how to be a wife and he had no idea how to be a husband, what we had was a love for each other, but no frame of reference of what love really looked like. Soon after our first wedding anniversary I wanted out, we were set to move into our new home and I told him that he was moving in alone. I was such a broken and hurting girl that I couldn’t bear any kind of hurt that he intentionally or unintentionally caused me. One week before the moving day I was doing laundry, I was sad and hurting and I was still set on him moving out on his own. That’s when something happened to change the course of my marriage.  As I carried a laundry basket back to our room I was aware of what was stirring in my heart, in my heart I knew God did not want me to leave my husband, so overwhelmed by emotion I dropped the laundry basket and collapsed on the floor sobbing, I was so hurt, I didn’t want to stay, I didn’t want to be hurt anymore and I made that known to God, but ever so gently I heard God say, ” that is what he wants you to do” then I had two flashbacks of conversations I had, had with my husband before we were married. One of these flashbacks was during an intimate conversation we were having about family and  he said to me, ” nothing good ever lasts in my life” the other took place a couple of months before our wedding and in all seriousness he took my hands in his and he looked me in the eye and said ” you don’t want to marry me, I have never felt loved and I don’t know how to love you” I didn’t take him seriously though and I brushed it off as no big deal and I told him that “of course I want to marry you don’t be so silly”. The realization hit me so strong that my husband was trying to make me leave him ( and he was doing a good job of it too) because that is what he thought was inevitably going to happen. Broken, sobbing and empty I said to God “if you want me to stay then you are going to have to do it through me because I have nothing left to give”, and God did it, He gave me the strength that I needed to push through and we moved into our new home together. We had older wiser couples point us to marriage counselling, we went for 9 sessions and it helped us greatly, however it didn’t solve all of our problems it just strengthened our resolve to make our marriage work. Over the years God has been so good and faithful to us. He has been faithful to teach me and help me become the wife my husband needs. My husband didn’t need to change (let me clarify that statement, even if my husband changed and matched everything I wanted him to be, it still wouldn’t have been good enough I would not have been happy because I was a mess inside) I was the one that needed to change, I needed healing in my heart, my emotions and in my mind, I needed correction( course correction), and I needed to be taught how to be a wife, and God did just that. Once I began to change my husband began to change in response to me, little by little I let him off the hook for being the sole provider of my happiness and for keeping me feeling fixed all of the time. I learned to rely on God to help me through any and every situation and circumstance that has come up in our marriage and in my life, without Jesus my life would have been hopeless. As I reflect on these past 20 years of marriage I am so thankful for everything God has taught me and I am so aware that I am a work in progress. I look forward to each anniversary because with every passing  year our marriage  gets better and better. What I’ve learned in these last 20 years is invaluable, I will not try to give advice to anyone struggling in marriage, but  what I can do is share my testimony and testify of the love of God for us, and His love is inclusive no one is out of the realm of His love and what He will do for one He will do for another. If God helped my marriage He will helps yours too. I have been thinking that I will be posting more blogs about marriage and the lessons I have learned in hopes that it will help someone else  who is struggling. Thanks for reading, have a wonderful day!

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