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My Fireman and I celebrated 15 years this past August in Disneyland and the top question from people in line or Cast Members at a check out was, “how do you make it to 15 years?”
How do you stay married in a culture of divorce?
I believe that was the question behind the question.
Our answer, “we have been attending the same bible study for the past 13 years of our marriage.”
Being in the same bible study is not the only reason for staying married in a divorce culture, but its unique to us and why we believe it has been the glue.
13 years ago we were invited to a bible study for young married couples. There were a handful of couples there and only a few of them had children, even I was only just expecting my first. That first season we faithfully went to our Monday night group and listened to older and wiser Christian couples share their stories with us. It wasn’t the content so much that kept us coming back but we built a tribe there that has stood the test of time, kids, jobs, careers and more. These people we sat with became our family. We could share life with them and we all agreed marriage was hard.
Here is just a handful of marriage advice we have coined over the years.
- You are stepping on my air hose, or am I stepping on your air hose.
- Climb the palm tree to get to the coconuts.
- Men’s brains are like waffles and women are more like spaghetti.
- Men absolutely have a “nothing box” where they can go and think about nothing
- The crazy cycle.
- I am choosing to be happy in my all brick house with you because there is no door.
- The 5 love languages. Men seem to only have 1 is false. Search longer.
- Marriage is like a ballet. The husband lifting the women up to soar on new heights.
There is most likely not a Christian phrase for marriage that we have not heard and used in our home. We have laughed together over these and yes even crossed our arms in disgust. How is it possible that a man can actually stop thinking? For years this drove me mad until I saw it in others and realized it was true.
We went from a group of young married to a young married with children. So we started adding parenting series, and you know what I learned that saved my marriage more than once? There are seasons every couple goes through and having kids is a season not the new forever. It was so important to realize that we needed time just the two of us. To connect without being parents and remember why we chose each other to begin with. The season of raising kids will end but he and I will be forever. We choose to know each other at the end of this season.
Being in community with the same bible leaders and a handful of couples have allowed our marriage and all its ups and downs to not be hidden. We found a group to be vulnerable with and share our deepest pain with. There has never been a hint of bitterness or gossip within our group. We lay our junk out there and we pray and trust our secrets to a pack of misfits.
I am not saying being in bible study has saved us but God through the prayers and fellowship of other people our age has. The enemy loves to keep marriage troubles in the dark and force you to concede you are the only ones. Truth lights it all up and makes peace with the hills and valleys.
Our small group is amazing, truly one of a kind, kindred people, and I will be forever grateful for their friendship all these years later.