Sunday, 7 August 2016

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Growing in Love Together... Towards a True Fairy-Tale Marriage

Picture representing a fairy-tale marriage

I dream of a fairy-tale marriage, that we live happily ever after, that my hubby will always agree with me, will always give in to me, will always pamper me, that he will never have differences of opinion with me. We will always have one mind, one heart, one voice. We will always agree. He will always know my mind and knows what I want, and gives me what I want. We live always at the same tempo, and that of course, he should always follow my tempo :-)

If my hubby will always agree with me, give in to me, follow my way, follow my tempo, then it will be perfect, and I will have a fairy-tale marriage.

But alas it is not always like that. No matter how much we love each other, our marriage is not perfect based on my (self-seeking) ideals, because we fall short.

We are two unique individuals. There will be times of differences of opinion. We are both very stubborn. We are both very proud. We can be defensive. We can be impatient. We can speak unkindly to each other unknowingly - sometimes even knowingly. We should agree in unity in front of our children as all experts advise parents to do, but we don't always succeed. We hear each other, but we don't always listen. When we succeed in listening to each other, we don't always understand all the time, every time. We can see things from different perspectives. Or we can see the other's perspective and yet still find that our own perspective is equally justified. We have blind spots that we do not see - sometimes perhaps stubbornly chose not to see. We can be foolish and childish. We have our own idiosyncrasies that can drive each other up the wall... to grumpiness and explosion. All these, alas, can bring us into corner and a stalemate.

In my fairy-tale wistfulness, I wish this will not happen, but it will, because we fall short. When we fall short, we can hurt each other. When we are hurt, we can get disheartened. When we are disheartened, distances can arise.

But by the grace of God, love closes all distances and bring us back. Even as the tears flow that cloud the eyes, we must not let hurt get in the way.

What is this love?

Whenever I feel my hubby has spoken unkindly. Whenever I am hurt and confused. Whenever I am self-seeking (i.e. seeking to be pampered by my hubby, instead of pampering him), I will remember God's reminder to follow the way of love (1 Corinthians 14:1), which is the most excellent (1 Corinthians: 13:1).

The way of love is...

Philippians 2: 4
1 Corinthians 13: 4-8
Ephesians 5:21
Romans 12: 10
Romans 12: 16, 17, 20-21
Romans 14: 19
Romans 15: 1-2, 5
Romans 12:21

Summarized as follows:
  • Not looking to your own interests, but to the interests of the other
  • Honor one another above yourself
  • Submit to each another
  • Not easily angered
  • Forgive
  • Bear over
  • Keeps no record of wrongs
  • Not rude
  • Not self-seeking
  • Always trusts (like I continue to trust J)
  • Always hopes
  • Always perseveres
  • Patient
  • Kind
  • Not proud
  • Live in harmony with one another
  • Do not be overcome by evil, but overcome evil with good
  • Love never fails

If we can do all these, growing in (true) love together, then we have truly created a fairy-tale marriage. We are still work-in-progress, but love will help us perfect it. I am inspired by the marriage of the late Mr. Lee Kuan Yew and his wife, a marriage that stood the test of time, and I am sure that Kate's and William's fairy-tale marriage will too :-)

I wrote this post to help me remember what God is teaching me. I still dream of a fairy-tale marriage... that in our retirement and old age, we will continue to walk holding hands, going out to buy an ice-cream and sharing an ice-cream together, like our elderly couple neighbor next door do :-)



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