Marriage is War

G.K. Chesterton said, “Marriage is an adventure, like going to war.”

Today (January 16) marks 19 years of ‘war’ for Katrina and me.

Yes, it has been war. But not that kind of war.

Do we have some moments of ‘intense discussion’? Absolutely. Have we proven the adage that opposites attract? You bet. She’s peppermint mocha; I’m coffee—black. But despite such differences, we’ve grown to understand that tensions in our marriage are not about our covenant, but because of it. We struggle not against each other, but against ourselves.

Our self-centered passions seek to poison our covenant—to turn our affections inward, rather than out. To distract our gaze from our sacred unity to a (seemingly) more exciting diversity.

A vibrant marriage is hard work. It requires drawing-out each other’s poisons. It’s painful and sickening. But in the midst of this necessity is a glorious journey of discovery as the wonder of raw humanity is revealed. The adventure of marriage is born through the linking of mind, body and soul in the war against the biggest threat to oneness: us.

I’m ashamed of those times when my actions have threatened my marital oneness. I can be a very unattractive man. How grateful I am for the many times my wife has covered my ugliness with beautiful grace. She’s seen my worst, listened to my rants and observed my knee-jerk, thoughtless actions—yet loved, accepted and forgiven. She inspires me to be a patient father, sacrificial spouse and a fully-devoted Jesus freak.

I am a totally infatuated, one-woman man. That resolve has brought a daily, compounding dividend of marital joy and contentment. I cherish the life-long promise my wife and I share. We are perfectly partnered for life’s grandest adventure.

Pat Benatar was right: “Love is a battlefield.” But on that battlefield, the best is being brought out of me, and my wife. I’ll go to war with, and for her—anytime.

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