From the beginning of time when God created man he was given a set of Vows to keep. The original vows were greater than 600 in number. It would ultimately turn out that mans attempt to just keep Ten commandments would be a continual struggle, let alone 600 plus!
So we established from the start that man and woman would find themselves constantly breaking Vows with God as well as with his fellow man. It seemed like the only way to have a "Perfect union" would be to marry God himself.
In light of that impossibility we marry mankind with the foreknowledge that we are all subject to err. It is unfortunate that we don't always get to practice living out each of the vows before marriage. For better or for worse, For richer or for poorer, In sickness and in health, Til death do us part. Marriage is certainly on the job training.
Having now been married for 37 years I could probably write a thesis on each one of the Vows and their impact on the marriage. I certainly have not done any kind of quantitative study on each of the wedding Vows however, if I had to guess I would say most broken marriages are a result of Broken vows.
Now keep in mind that my statement means broken either directly or indirectly, whatever the scenario was it could probably be traced back to one of the Vows. Statistics are screaming at us that 45% of marriages end in divorce. A recent report showed the top 20 reasons for divorce were : Infidelity, money, Lack of communication, constant arguing, weight gain, unrealistic expectations, lack of intimacy, lack of equality, not prepared for marriage, Abuse,
Addictions, Parenting styles differ, didn't marry for love, lack of sincerity, lost of identity, irreconcilable differences, long distance relationships, Control struggles, Parent or family interference, and jealousy & insecurity.
We could probably all add yet another scenario to that long list however, lets look at another list today. This is a list compiled from my own thirty seven years of marriage,
So what are the secrets to the longevity of love? I will start by saying you must always be able to forgive. To be forewarned is to be forearmed. If you are in a new relationship you risk the proclivity of being in what psychologist should call the "Honeymoon" phase" It's much like a parent whose love for their child causes them to see no wrong or justify wrong behaviors. Please know however, there is a fine line between forgiveness and enabling. I would probably have to do a whole blog just to bring clarity to that.
Another aspect that has brought us to the thirty seven year mark is allowing the other person to live their dreams and visions and supporting what they do. When the Pastor says "and the two shall become as one" it did not mean you had to give up your identity and be consumed in the identity of the other person. The better and more fulfilled you are as an individual, the better you are as a partner and spouse.
Last but not least, you have got to realize that Change is inevitable. Just on a physiological side, did you know that every seven years, every cell in your body is replaced by a new cell?
So on that morning when you wake up and say to your spouse "You've changed"!...Guess what.?...THEY DID! So if they have made changes then you are changing two. Now you are not even the same two people who got married. If we change in our physical bodies I would suspect that we also have mental, emotional and spiritual changes also.
Well folk, I can't say this is the perfect template for all marriages but if I was going on a marriage journey, I might just take a few directions from somebody who had already traveled the route. So, don't get to heaven and have God say, "Why did you act like you were married to me?
Pat Martin Speaks