Marriage is not a one time choice. Marriage is choosing everyday. You choose how you operate, enjoy, nurture, and build that relationship. You may not be doing any of that in your marriage lately, but trust me that is also a choice that can have big consequences. 

I love my husband. I knew when I met him that he was incredibly special. I knew that I had a lot of plans, none of which included getting married at 20. Sometimes God looks at our plans and loves us enough to give us what we don’t have the good sense to ask for but is exactly what we need. I saw a life with this man that was someone far beyond what I could dream, and I chose him. 

That is one of the secrets of marriage and having success in relationships. You need someone who will choose you. I want anyone reading this to really consider this: people are on their best behavior while dating. This is the phase where someone is trying to convince you they are worthy of your time, energy, and affection. If this person ignores you now, they will later. If they cheat now, they will later. If they lie now, they will lie later. Understand that choosing to think that time will always make huge character flaws go away is choosing to believe a lie. 

I don’t mean that being in a relationship does not make you a better person. I’m a much better person than I was before meeting my husband. What I mean is that if your relationship starts by being built with these kind of major flaws in either of your foundations as individuals, you’re building something that will topple and fall. One of the things that most breaks my heart is seeing the aftermath of the ruins in the lives of people I love. 

I know so many people who wasted their time, energy, and emotions pouring themselves into people hoping they would become who they wanted them to be without any evidence in their character that they even wanted to be that for themselves or anyone else. 

Remember, marriage isn’t the solution to these problems. It’s the magnifying glass. If you choose to marry someone who is not who they should be now or is not trying to become more, you are in for a lopsided, crumbling relationship that has you pulling yourself in every direction trying to keep it all from falling apart. It will fall apart. The person wrapped around the place holding it up when it falls will be the only one crushed. 

Consider these things when choosing any kind of relationship, but especially marriage. I am honest enough to say that life is going to throw some really hard stuff at you that will make you feel like you are going to crumble from the weight, BUT if you have chosen well you will have a best friend that will not let you be defeated. 

To quote one of my favorite pastors, Dr. Voddie Baucham, “Love is an act of the will, accompanied by emotion, that always acts of behalf of its object.” If the person’s will is self focused, ruled by emotion, and only chooses their own good, they do not love you. Do not choose to be in relationships with anyone who can not give you this kind of love. God loved you enough to give you His Son (John 3:16), and no matter what you think about how you can make a relationship work, it will fail. If that person does not love this way, despite your best efforts, you can not make any relationship work on your own. 

Choose better for yourself today than that because if you do not look at that relationship with absolute honesty and wisdom, you are choosing to be unloved, unhappy, unfulfilled, and in marriage that would be the loneliest place to be. Marriage is the chance to live life with your best friend and to display the glory of God to the world. Especially if you are a believer in Christ, this is the goal. If you are not operating in Godliness in your relationship now you will not later. 

Ask yourself this: is this relationship one that I would want for the person I love most in the world? If you can not answer yes with no doubt, consider why. Do not hang onto something or someone thinking that this is the one shot you’ll get at happiness. If you have to hang on, you won’t end up happy anyway.