We have decided as a couple to post about marriage once a week. Don’t let me off the hook on this one. Marriages in our county are strained and pressed, much as is the case all over the United States in particular. What we’d like to do is to highlight couples who have stood the test of time and have some words of wisdom. We’d also like to highlight couples everywhere from dating to the point of a seasoned marriage… marriages still very much in the early to middle points of the “long haul” of say a 50+ year marriage.
Please email me at firstname.lastname@example.org with brief descriptions of couples and their marriages or dating relationships that really have pointed you in the right direction. Please don’t think any relationship is too low in passion and thrill, hightlights and newsstand worthy sounding details. Really, it’s remarkable whether it’s got a lot of fancy details or is steady and quiet, patient and consistent. Many are very refreshed to read about marriages like their own that are God-honoring and refreshing, not because of all the activity but because of the consistency. If you provide me with their contact information, I can reach out to them and ask about meeting with them for an interview. You can point them to my blog, especially some of the posts that are more documentary feeling, and they will see that we are not going to get into extreme detail or make them feel awekward. Our focus will be brief thoughts about their lives, mentions of the pieces of truth and grace that helped them through the years, and testimony about our impressions of them all in positive light from our time with them. Then, we will likely wrap out each post with biblical truths about marriage, encouragements to keep laboring on in this labor of love called marriage. The main focus will be encouraging spouses in their marriages to be poured into by God from godly couples and from God’s Word, to get up and get back at it, seeking to love by giving instead of getting, serving instead of taking.
We won’t seek to just make a romance emphasis here, but rather we will focus on covenant and friendship, romance in the midst of commitment, the joy of mutual and shared passions and goals, the thrill of worshiping and praying together, the difficulties of conflict and unresolved bitterness, the dark and discouraging steps into divorce and yet the hope and joy of recovering from those steps either after-the-fact or before getting to that point. We will share of couples who have divorced, remarried, divorced again, and then re-married the original spouse – that happens! We will share about couples who have been confident that divorce was inevitable, time and time again, and yet who experienced the transforming grace of God in their sorrows and anger. We will talk about couples who have been sure that the other person isn’t going to give it an effort but who decided to try to save the marriage anyway. We will share about one-sided rescue efforts and mutually poured into marriages.
Should we go to counseling? We will discuss this, the benefits of counseling and getting things out in the open, even if that’s through sharing notes with another couple or two once a month and being raw honest, asking for prayer and advice, listening and opening up again, befriending other couples seeking to grow in their marriages, being less about programs for one’s marriage health and more about healthy friendships and consistent attention to trying and investing and enjoying… True enjoyment of anything takes effort, and this is especially true in marriage. It’s one of the most worth-while investments we can make, friends, so let’s dive in and learn from our elders and from one another, all the way from dating to dying. How do we do this well? How do we finish stronger than we started?!
We will talk about the monotony of marriage at times or the challenge of keeping a fresh and refreshing relationship when kids and careers and passions for great things can so easily all spin us to where we think things really aren’t beneficial for anyone in the current state of things.
More than all of this talking, we hope to do some listening with you to the wisdom of other couples. We intend to interview, especially at first, the older and wiser, asking them for their wisdom, how they encountered things and what they think of the current state of things when it comes to marriages around them. What are their thoughts and what is their advice to all of us who still have anywhere from two to three to four decades ahead in our marriages?
We will be interviewing these couples as well as any other couples open to meeting with us. We’ll record our times together so we can listen, pray, journal, ponder, and then post with their thoughts peppered throughout our post once a week. At this point I’m thinking this post will be on Tuesdays. As we engage with parenting, we will probably begin posting about this as well as a couple. I plan to include Carrie in thought development about the other topics each week, such as mobilizing the local church, what it looks like to see the local churches in our counties fulfilling the Great Commission and the Great Commands to Love God and Love Neighbor. Generally speaking, these are likely the primary topics moving forward.
One thing I know for sure is that we intend to be consistent about this topic of marriage, and specifically we hope to focus in on local and strong marriages for us all to learn from and be refreshed by in the decades to come.
In His love and steadfastness,
– Torrey and Carrie