By the time I hit middle school I had colors and themes in mind, and started drawing what my wedding dress would look like. High school I had my bridesmaids in mind, but started to become less focused on a wedding. I was all about becoming a godly “lady-in-waiting” – pursuing God with everything I had and developing the character that a godly wife is meant to have.
Looking back, those aren’t bad things. But I think that even though I had the best of intentions, I got lost in the frills and thrills that marriage appeared to be about. There is nothing wrong with dreaming of a wedding. And there is certainly nothing wrong with seeking God to become the woman that He made me to be.
What I did have wrong was my focus. Because the thing is, character isn’t about catching a guy, the wedding isn’t a destination, and marriage isn’t about me, and I believe that is the common trap we fall into today.
What then is the purpose of marriage?
I believe that marriage is to be a reflection of God’s image.
That being said, I also believe that is why there is such an attack on the sanctity of marriage.
So, when am I getting to “fighting for your marriage before it starts”?
We need to stand up for the sanctity of marriage. The institution of marriage is God-ordained – one man and one woman.
28 In this same way, husbands ought to love their wives as their own bodies. He who loves his wife loves himself. 29 After all, no one ever hated their own body, but they feed and care for their body, just as Christ does the church—30 for we are members of his body. 31 “For this reason a man will leave his father and mother and be united to his wife, and the two will become one flesh.”[c] 32 This is a profound mystery—but I am talking about Christ and the church. 33 However, each one of you also must love his wife as he loves himself, and the wife must respect her husband. Ephesians 5:28-33 (NIV)
We need to recognize that marriage is not all about the wedding, it is not about what makes us happy, and really, it is not all about us at all.
I believe that when you truly come to this understanding and stand on it, that is when you really begin fighting for your marriage – even before it starts.