A Few Of My Thoughts On Marriage.

Last weekend, I attended a fabulous wedding.

People always want to know when I will be getting married but never ask me what I think about marriage. So, I took it upon myself to tell you what I really think about getting hitched.

Back to the wedding; it was filled with joy, fun, and laughter. Families and friends of our lovely bride and groom gathered together to celebrate this union and it was simply magical.

So, today during my “quiet time”, I felt prompted to pause and write as this song by Bethel Music played in the background. It is titled “P I E C E S”. Listen intently here.

As I wonder about the union of marriage, I realize I am not married (in the human form of the word) so I may not be the best person to give marital advice. I cannot also ignore the wisdom that God has allowed me to see on the matter especially as I have witnessed first hand the ups and downs of my parent’s marriage. But on a heavenly note, I am married. I know this sounds cliche, almost like Christian-ese, and if you are my future husband on earth reading this, remember I am still going to be your wife. Also remember that even the Apostle Paul called it a great mystery (Eph 5:32). Ha! But seriously we; the Church, we are the Bride of Christ.

That being said; I am a (spiritual but pending physical) bride and can boldly speak on marriage.

See here, Ephesians 5;

22 Wives, be submissive to your own husbands as unto the Lord. 23 For the husband is the head of the wife, just as Christ is the head and Savior of the church, which is His body. 24 But as the church submits to Christ, so also let the wives be to their own husbands in everything.

25 Husbands, love your wives, just as Christ also loved the church and gave Himself for it, 26 that He might sanctify and cleanse it with the washing of water by the word, 27 and that He might present to Himself a glorious church, not having spot, or wrinkle, or any such thing, but that it should be holy and without blemish. 28 In this way men ought to love their wives as their own bodies. He who loves his wife loves himself. 29 For no one ever hated his own flesh, but nourishes and cherishes it, just as the Lord cares for the church. 30 For we are members of His body, of His flesh and of His bones. 31 “For this reason a man shall leave his father and mother and shall be joined to his wife, and the two shall be one flesh.”a]”>[a]32 This is a great mystery, but I am speaking about Christ and the church. 33 However, let each one of you love his wife as himself, and let the wife see that she respects her husband.

So knowing this, I am a bride in a spiritual sense and I receive love from God daily. I see some of the ways in which God works in my life and the life of others. These experiences make me realize marriage is not an easy task and should not be taken lightly. Here are a few things I know are required to make a good marriage. I am personally working on some of these things in my own life and in relation to how I serve my first Groom.

  1. Sacrifice. There is a giving up, laying down of “self” that occurs prior to the decision to be married, and throughout its duration. One that involves a decision of selflessness and the “whole pursuit” of the other person’s interest and maybe even purpose. I believe we should marry based on how our purpose in life is ordained to intertwine with theirs. The reason I call sacrifice a decision and not a feeling is because feelings are emotions. We all know emotions are fleeting and conditional on circumstance. It is a “whole pursuit” only when each one in the unit no longer seeks pleasure for oneself. This only happens when both individuals purposes work together. Sacrifice will maintain the desire to be betrothed to a partner through life. Sacrifice allows a woman to function as a help meet and a husband as a leader. Christ in his example of sacrifice laid down his life for his Bride. That’s too deep, I’m still working on laying down my life daily but you get the level of sacrifice!
  2. Commitment is a decision. Yes, love and various emotional feelings precede this but they do not maintain the marriage. It is easier to be committed to what you believe in. If purposes correlate commitment is facilitated. I love the quote that says “You cannot keep a man/woman who does not want to be kept”. This is true because each individual needs to make a  conscious decision to stay married even when the temptations facilitate things for you to leave. If you have “exit tendencies” you are not ready to be married to anything or anyone. Exit tendencies are broad, but to me, they are fundamentally defined by a lack of character.  Others include an inability to recognize the value in a person or situation, or a person that is easily distracted by people, places and the decisions of others. Christ is committed to the church, as evidenced by the sacrifice of his life to ensure that anyone who is committed to his sacrifice has a spot with him forever.
  3. Mutual Interest. Gods interest in me is thankfully not connected to my interest in Him! That is defined as grace. As humans we need support, God is God and does not need our support. But when there is mutual interest and support our relationship with God is able to blossom even better and we can operate in the best potential as His creation. Mutual interest in marriage will enrich, grow and prosper both husband and wife in every aspect. In my order of importance; there will be spiritual, physical, moral, financial growth and enrichment in the lives of those involved.
  4. Compatibility. I am made in the image and likeness of God. This is not a physical trait as much as it is a character trait. Another scripture calls me fearfully and wonderfully made, so I believe God is all that too.
  5. Love … duh! Needs little explanation. Can be laced with a strong attraction but not defined by that alone. Sis & Bro reading this; you are going to have to really love this person. Multifaceted three-way type of love. Filial, Eros & Agape. As in filially care for and about him/her, erotically want him/her and “agape-ly” desire to stick with him/her. I know I made up my own word, but look at what scripture has to say about this ( Paraphrased 1 Corinthians 13, The Message). Love never gives up. Love cares more for others than for self. Love doesn’t want what it doesn’t have. Love doesn’t strut, doesn’t have a swelled head. Doesn’t force itself on others, Isn’t always “me first,”. Doesn’t fly off the handle. Doesn’t keep score of the sins of others. Doesn’t revel when others grovel. Takes pleasure in the flowering of truth. Puts up with anything. Trusts God always.Always looks for the best and never looks back.

At the fabulous wedding, the priest gave his words of advice for the couple using the alphabet as a mnemonic. I remember asking myself how the CATHOLIC priest would know anything marriage but the mystery Paul referred to applies here too! I loved what he shared. It was cheesy, simple but very true. I dislike plagiarism but I don’t remember his name to give him credit so here it goes :-

Absolutely adore each other

Be best friends

Compromise with each other

E                                                (I don’t remember  as I was probably on snapchat)

Forgive and forget

Gaze into each other’s eyes

Hold hands

Inspire and intrigue each other

Joke and laugh and have fun

Kiss

Love with all your heart

Marvel each other’s talents

Nurture each other’s souls

Overcome problems

Play games

Quiet each other’s fears

Remember the little things in life

Say I love you

Take time to be tender

Understand and care deeply

Value everything you share

Wish on stars together

eXpress your true feelings

Yearn for each other

Zzzzzz in each other’s arms

After all this text, marriage to me is a spiritual ministry; a replication of an already existing one between us and God. Marriage will bring physical fulfillment to humanly companionship but requires a lot more than just that. This is a very brief document and I focused on the spirituality of the marriage union as I understand it during this phase of my life. This shouldn’t replace your divine revelation on the matter. I too believe that most of what I know is biblical.
Because I am also a female physician, my mentees frequently ask me about the possibilities of being in a successful marriage with a very demanding career in medicine. There is a myth that no one wants to marry a woman who is never home, or who makes a lot more money than a man etc.
To their fears I will say; sacrifice, commitment, mutual understanding and mutual interest in each other’s purposes will be necessary. I’ve witnessed several women physicians manage a home like proverbs 31 women and still attained heights in highly demanding fields of medicine and surgery! I believe they had these factors working for them.
As a single woman prayerfully desiring marriage, I advise others like myself to be patient and wait on God for His plan, timing and will for our lives. Don’t settle and let God also create your love story like he created you.
While you wait though— I’ll need your help. Please find an “E” for the priest’s advice piece and please tell me in the comments ;).

Again I write with the agape type of love,

Nina.

13 Comments

  1. Yabz O. 09/02/2017 / 2:51 am

    Encourage each other 🙂

    • ninotswalk 09/02/2017 / 2:52 am

      Yes!!! I like this one!! Very witty Yabo 😉

  2. David Ashworth 09/02/2017 / 1:17 pm

    Delight in the weird intricacies of your spouse.
    Enjoy the small things that are easily overlooked.

    • ninotswalk 09/02/2017 / 4:31 pm

      I agree Mr. Ashworth!!

  3. Ogbe 09/02/2017 / 9:31 pm

    My dear doc
    Well written out
    I wont comment much here but what i always tell people as someone who will soon be clocking five years of marital bliss with my dear wife is that marriage should never stop you from your own individual self realisations. Marriage is a commitment to each orher but should never stop anyone from chasing their individual paths as human beings.
    E,g if you dream was to be a surgeon and your partner’s was to travel the world, each of you should show respect for each other’s desires, support each other because you are now one, alongside showing level commitment in your marriage.
    I feel terrible when i see many people putting their personal dreams or lives on hold in the name of marriage.
    This should not happen.

    Well i leave it at this Looool
    Marriage is a commitment but should not stop both partners from self realization of their individual dreams.

    • ninotswalk 09/02/2017 / 9:57 pm

      This is very true. I agree that there should be growth on an individual level too. I am in firm support of not losing your self or your purpose in the midst of a relationship or marriage. You made a solid point. Thanks for sharing!

  4. franklin 09/02/2017 / 9:59 pm

    E is Eliminate Snapchat 😊

    • ninotswalk 09/03/2017 / 12:10 am

      Haha… Franklin! Good one!

    • Sandra Ekukole 10/03/2017 / 8:41 pm

      Discuss sensitive issues openly and honestly, no matter how awkward it may feel.
      E for me will be Encourage each other.
      Thank you Doc, this was a refreshing and insightful one. Kudos!

  5. Brown Shugah 09/07/2017 / 3:56 am

    The ABC’s makes me trip. ✌😉. E…stands for Eliminate all human 3rd parties in marriage and always invite the supreme being(God).

    • ninotswalk 09/07/2017 / 2:49 pm

      I love it!

  6. Monique Fotso 12/29/2017 / 2:26 am

    Though late on reading this post but so glad I did. Thanks Sis. It’s really refreshing and the ABC’s 👏👏👍👍 and I do agree with the “E”s proposed so far…Encouraging each other and also Eliminating 3rd parties humans, only 3rd party involved being God. I feel it so much for walking the same part as you I have had someone turn me down cause of medicine, how demanding it will be etc. I was broken but it’s in my brokenness I realized my value in Christ and who I am. I lost myself thinking I was doing all you said whereas I was just destroying me. Now I know waiting on the Big guy upstairs, He will lead me to the one and as you said am a spiritual but physically pending bride😁. Thank you again and Kudos on the blog.

    • the encouraging doc 12/29/2017 / 4:46 pm

      My dear, if a man rejects you based on your calling in medicine then he is not to walk with you. It’s almost better that he walked away now than later. The one for you will stick with you and support your calling as his partner, with your best interests in mind. If this person doesn’t want to marry a doctor then he is not for you- evidently because you about to be one and save some lives out here! There are plenty men who will love to marry a doctor. I promise you.

Tell me what you think.