My marriage has transformed me. Seven months ago, I became one with another. Per Genesis 2:24, I left my father and mother and was joined to my husband by the decree of God.
I knew to expect changes, but one I did not anticipate is inspired by daily chores. Coming from separate families, my husband and I developed different and sometimes conflicting approaches to routine cleanliness and organization. Through my husband’s example I have learned a proactive consideration. Surpassing manners and societal niceties, this method of anticipating another’s needs blooms into actions which ease their obligations and cater to their preferences even if seemingly silly or unnecessary.
Hand-in-hand with consideration comes compromise. We are blessed to share similar values but we continually adjust our preferred expressions of these, from the restaurants we frequent to the jobs we hold.
Compromise has in turn fostered my confidence. I entered marriage with conflict aversion. Avoiding confrontation was an undercurrent to my every decision, whether it concerned the things I spoke of or the people I spoke with. But I am blessed with my husband’s insistence that our compromise is a two-way street. He urges me to express my views freely; doing so, I become more confident in them and in expressing them.
Confidence in expression fosters our communication. Every disagreement, every discussion, every joy builds my ability to effectively communicate because we share these as we share our lives. I learn to listen to what is said versus what I think is said, and I actively pursue clarity when conveying my perspective.
Marriage is my greatest commitment and my first true understanding of the Covenant that God entered into with us. It leads me to a humility which my self-righteousness denied; it offers me a communion through one person to the rest of the human race. Each of these: consideration, compromise, confidence, communication, and commitment infuse my interactions with others. My marriage inspires me to offer my abilities in service. It informs my faith and brings me to closer communion with God, as God brings me to closer communion with my husband. It teaches me, every day, how to love.