My husband is home after his mission trip in
Our second and third years were definitely the hardest. That first year we truly were just in that honeymoon period where you ignore the stuff that’s not working. The second year, the frustration set in. I didn’t realize it but going into marriage I had a lot of expectations. I wanted the perfect Christian marriage that I imagined so many others had. Most days we didn’t line up with those expectations and I didn’t like it one bit. My husband began to withdraw to a place where he was accepted just as he was and encouraged for doing things right, his work. The more he withdrew, the worse it got, and the vicious cycle continued. Thankfully, I would soon learn that the “perfect” marriage doesn’t exist. When things between us were at their worst, a good friend intervened and gave me a talking to that I’ll never forget.
Our friend used a great analogy. He said that it was as if I had these blueprints for the perfect marriage but the problem was my husband didn’t have access to them. Every time he put a brick in the wrong place so to speak, I was frustrated, disappointed, and just downright disrespectful. He said that building a marriage was like deciding together each day where we would lay a brick. That it was only at the end of our days that we would look back and see the beautiful one-of-a-kind marriage we had. Somehow that made sense to me.
I threw out the blueprints after that. I embraced the idea that our marriage wouldn’t look like anyone else’s as a good thing. We began to figure out what worked best for us. We started getting to know each other again. And most importantly, we put our trust in God to be the architect and builder. It took some time but we began to build something that by God’s grace would last. I think we’ve got some interesting and wonderful and unique design elements to our marriage.
Eight years later, I was delighted to see a similar analogy in the Beth Moore Bible study we just finished called Stepping Up. Remembering that Jesus was a carpenter by trade she says, “Keep in mind that Christ is a custom builder...Let Him tell you how He wants your house to look instead of the other way around. He alone has the blueprints.” Wow, I knew exactly what she was talking about.
The church they built in