Today, I was pondering love, relationships and marriage. Having just ended a relationship with a guy, it's been on my mind some. :) As a quick aside, I must say - the ending to this relationship hasn't been nearly as bad as others I've experienced and best of all, I've grown so much (I think) as a person and in my relationship with Christ. There are a lot of good things that have come from the relationship and I'm glad for that.
Nevertheless, back to pondering marriage. I was driving along, thinking about what my expectations of marriage are - you know, a good relationship with God at the center, lots of love, great communication, having fun with each other, being able to enjoy life and work through the hard times, etc. - isn't that what everyone wants? Anyway, I had a thought bounce across my mind: What if God's plan for my life doesn't include that kind of marriage? What if I am supposed to marry someone who isn't all he could be and our relationship suffers because of it? What if God wants to use that to grow something in me (or him) for a greater purpose? What if God asked me to be like Hosea and marry someone who is unfaithful (not necessarily in a sexual way, but in a spiritual sense)? Would God be enough in my life to help me deal with that? Oh dear. It definitely put a new spin on things.
Something I've thought about a lot since the break-up is this: what if we give up on people too quickly? What if the other person is just about to break through to a new level and all they need is someone to hang in there with them? What if that other person needs another chance, or another 3 chances or even another 10 chances to get things right and we give up without even giving them a half-chance? Now, I'm not talking about giving a second chance to someone who is abusive or has serious issues that need dealing with. I'm talking about giving second chances to those who, like all of us, are struggling to find out just what it is God has called them to be or do and in the process of their growth, they really mess up and hurt people.
I don't have an answer. I know that it certainly is easier to just give up and walk away. Sometimes, that is exactly what needs to happen. But I wonder how often it really should happen. We are such a "microwave" generation. We want everything "NOW" and we want it perfect. All of life's problems on tv are fixed in 30 minutes, so when it takes weeks, months or maybe even years to deal with things in the real world, we get so impatient and throw in the towel....and I bet we often give up right on the verge of a major breakthrough or even a miracle.
Like I said, I do not have an answer. All I know is that this kind of thinking assures me that I need Christ at the front of my life so that I will make the right choices. I can't even imagine comtemplating marriage with someone without the benefit of Christ's direction and guidance. I don't know how non-believers make it. It seems hard enough even with God's help! At least I don't have to worry too much about it right now. :) Still waiting on God's man for me!