The above video will give you a beautiful picture of what marriage is all about…

Marriage is happening amongst many dear friends of ours lately. I spent the morning with a friend who just got back from her honeymoon, this weekend a dear friend I led Young Life with in college is getting married, & another young couple who both graduated from Davidson College last spring are finally tying the knot a month from now. Having celebrated our 8th wedding anniversary & nearing a whole decade of marriage in just a few years I am starting to feel like an old married woman! Yet, I remember so clearly those early months of marriage. We were living in Raleigh, had just graduated from college, were both on staff with Young Life, & I had just started my Masters program at Gordon Conwell for Counseling. It was almost as if a perfect storm was created as we re-entered our lives as one versus two individual people when we returned home. We had a charming, almost dilapitated house in the middle of a wealthy neighborhood living off a meager income. I was trying to figure out how to be a wife, a friend, a hard worker, and grad student. It wasn’t long before I crashed & burned. I reached a point pretty early in the fall semester where I simply just couldn’t hold it all together anymore. The pressures I put on myself to be perfect in combo with the outside circumstances of all that was required of me day-to-day made me melt. This is when I was brought to my knees & sought wise counsel from my counselor at the time. She offered me such freedom to make some hard decisions that would disappoint people, but allow me to create some space to just be & feel some of the pain I was experiencing in an effort to make some sense of it all, heal, & come out of this time transition stronger. My dear husband was probably questioning his decision to marry this crazy person at this point as my emotions were all over the place during this identity crisis! Welcome to marriage! The joyful, yet brutally intense joining of two souls here on earth!

Tim Keller says in his book, The Meaning of Marriage: Marriage is glorious, but hard. It’s a burning JOY and strength., and yet it is also blood, sweat, and tears, humbling defeats and exhausting victories. I love that! I wish this book was on my nightstand in my first year of marriage! Maybe then I would not have felt so alone in the mix of feelings of pure sweet happiness one second & utter despair of disorientation the next! My identity confusion had nothing to do with my love for my husband or his love for me. It simply had everything to do with the joining of our lives in such a complex way! Ephesians 5 says “A man shall leave his father and mother and be united to his wife, and the two will become one flesh...this is a profound mystery“. Can we all just take a sigh of relief here for a moment? So when marriage feels like a mystery… we are not alone! We can actually count it a gift that the yearnings stirred upon entering marriage are a common thread between all the people. No one is alone is this effort to figure each other out & get on the same page & be married! It’s a lifelong tension we get to live in!

I can honestly say that I fall more in love with my partner in this life more everyday. We have our seasons of bumps & slumps & mountaintop beauty. We ebb & flow like the tide & must ride out the waves when one or both of us is struggling. Thankfully by our Creator’s grace we are loved unconditionally & forgiven daily & this enables us to offer each other the same gift of grace + meeting each other where we are in the moment.

I highly recommend Keller’s book & if you want a chance to win it… hop over to a new blog I am excited to follow: Call me Callie Callie Pitts Davis is a talented photographer with the beloved Nancy Ray in Raleigh + she is a newlywed who plans to write about what it’s like to balance it all while walking with her Maker! Proud of you Callie!

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