Monday, October 27, 2008
I love my husband. I know that mostly this type of declaritive sentence is followed by a 'but' which then contains a complaint. And to be sure, husbands are rarely perfect beings. Then again, neither are wives.
So there is no but in this sentence. I LOVE my husband. To be perfectly honest, I quite adore him. He is smart, nerdy, cute, kind and absolutely wonderful and there has not been a day in which I didn't thank the Lord for helping me find such a wonderful, wonderful man.
After two years of marriage, one of which had quite a few challenges, I love my husband a million times more than I did when I married him. And the Lord above knows that I loved him quite a lot on that day already.
So what is the secret? It's very popular to say that 'working on' your relationship yields the most results. And certainly, no relationship, no marriage, thrives without both people valueing it and stepping out of their comfort zone now and again to talk about their relationship and what they feel or what they worry about.
I think htough, that one of the greatest 'secrets' in having a wonderful marriage is to chose right in the first place.
This doesn't seem much of a secret at first. After all... aren't there so many books geared to catching the right guy? Well... yes and no. Most books focus on the 'catching' part. How to atract a man, how to make a man want to marry you... or often in more Christian titles: what a man looks for in a good wife, or what a good wife is.
In my experience, being a woman, there is very little written about how to see if a man is truely going to make a good husband. I am no expert, but a friend and I both are the lucky wives of two exceptional husbands. I actually waited to marry until I was thirty because I wanted to find one. And I am so grateful that I waited for him. My mother had started to think there was not going to be a husband, and no grandchildren. I wish I could say I had been cheerfully trusting in the Father the entire time, but I have been impatient and frustrating throughout the wait. I knew that I had three requirements for a husband, that seemed to me simple enough to find. It really wasn't, and looking back my list was far from complete, but it's a good place to start.
I wanted a husband, first of all, who was kind. Not just kind to me, but an innately kind person. Someone who wished others well with all his heart and wanted to truely be the best person he could in other peoples lives'. A kind heart is one of the most important things a man can have, since it will temper a lot of other vices: if a man is truely kind he will not wish his own vices and sins to touch or harm other people, therefor he will strive to keep them as small as possible.
Secondly, I wanted a husband who was intelligent in a bookish way. This to me was the way to make sure my husband matched my personality. You do not need to have the same interests, but the same way of looking at life can be extremely beneficial. For example, my husband likes math type knowledge, he likes economy and our mutual interest in history is still different since I like social history, fabrics, knits, parlour games, pots and pans and household budgets, while he is interested in battlefields, treaties, strategies and laws. But we both like learning from books, our interests tend to be cerebral rather than outdoors or competition like. We have a similar way of looking at life and that helps a lot in a great marriage, much more than say... both liking the same type of movies.
Thirdly I wanted to have a husband with an inner drive. I didn't always define it as faith, but I wanted someone who looked for more in life than go to work, come home to watch tv or go out, go to sleep and repeat. I wanted someone with an inner motivation, for his work, for his hobbies and for his life.
I realise now that, what I tried to describe at a very early age was faith. Faith makes people go the extra mile and that makes even every day life part of a bigger and more glorious whole.
It was a good starting list and it certainly helped me decide that my husband was the right one for me. There were other elements though that I looked into once there actually was someone on the horizon.
(to be continued)