I remember thinking after getting married, “This is it! I’ll finally get to live happily ever after!”
It was truly one of the happiest days of my life. Everything and I mean everything, went down without a hitch–we were really blessed to have a very stress-free wedding and reception.
Having placed God first in my relationship with my husband really paid off. I totally felt God’s blessings just pouring over me during that entire season and it was amazing.
Then we got to the honeymoon…
And let me tell you what– going to a completely different part of the world, knowing no one but my fresh, new husband, gave us a lot of time to work on our trust and communication.
One fine morning, in sunny, beautiful Moorea, we decided to go biking around the island. Everything was going smooth and I was on cloud nine. We stopped by a small hut that was selling these steak sandwiches and we just couldn’t pass them up.
After purchasing two loaves of the sandwiches, we headed back to our overwater bungalow and prepared to have our lunch. We decided to eat outside overlooking the Ocean because what would make this day any better, right?
So I set the sandwiches on the outdoor table and headed back in to get two bottles of cold water to go along with our lunch.
Then the ants came.
And they covered our sandwiches.
So I went to my fresh new husband and asked him what we should do. This was my first real test of allowing him to lead.
He suggested we eat the sandwiches anyways. Ummm… no.
All those cloud nine and perfect pictures of a perfect marriage came to a screeching halt.
“You want me to do what now?!”
Having every other food shop shut down for siesta, eating the sandwiches was our only option of food until dinner came. And after biking miles around a tropical island, our hunger was starting to set in. It was the only choice we had if we wanted to eat.
I seriously had a talk with God at this point.
“This type of submission doesn’t count, right? I don’t really have to eat these ants, right? I’m sure he can just find me some food elsewhere, right?”
Of course, this was not the only dispute I had with my husband upon getting married.
Some days we would have miscommunication over something as small as carpet and it would blow up into a full argument.
And other days we would have serious disputes over finances, our families, or the nagging things we did in the house (I never remember to put the wet clothes into the dryer while he leaves the kitchen cabinet doors open).
Though the disputes weren’t a total shocker, I did at times begin to question if getting married was truly my “happily ever after”?
Where I once thought that getting married would essentially be the answer to my joy and happiness, I quickly discovered that such was the case.
Sure, you got Mr. Right. He’s yours. It’s a done deal. And things in that aspect can bring you a lot of happiness.
But let’s remember here that we are all sinners and imperfect people. Your Mr. Right is not essentially your Mr. Perfect. And neither are you perfect to him.
The God-honest truth is this:
After nearly a decade of breakups, heartaches, getting cheating on, being used and mistreated, feeling rejected and unloved, yes, finally getting married did make me happy.
It felt really, really good knowing that I finally found the man who God has given me to become my husband till death do us part.
And after being married for going on five years now, with many ups and downs, new homes, new careers, and a growing family, I admit that I am still genuinely happy and thankful for getting married to my husband all those years ago.
My sense of happiness and joy does not come 100% from the sole fact that I’m married.
I would like to think that if I believed in that myth then I wouldn’t actually be as happy as I am today.
There are several reasons why I am now happy and living a happy life during this married season of my life. But much of it has nothing to do with the fact that I said: “I do”.
Bottom line: Does getting married make you happy? If done right, and by allowing God to lead that relationship into a marriage where Christ is at the very foundation, then yes, yes it should make you very happy.
If you’re looking for ways to create that lasting foundation in your current relationship, then take a sec to download my free handout, “The Love Trust Test“! It will reveal to you exactly how much you trust God when it comes to your love life and what you can do to keep God at the center and establish a lasting relationship with your potential Mr. Right!
But does getting married make you “happily ever after”? Well, no, not exactly.
In fact, there is a lot that goes for yourself and your life in order to make this a true fact. Allow me to break it down for you.
1. I’m a better person because I continue to work on myself to create a happier life.
While being married has its difficulties at times, I never stopped working on myself to become a better person. I think if I stopped once I got married, then those simple arguments could’ve escalated and been blown out of proportions. And that would’ve made our marriage quite difficult from the beginning.
I make a conscious effort to continuously seek the Lord and to learn of ways that I can be a better woman, friend, and wife.
All of those things keep me happy and bring me joy on a consistent basis.
2. My marriage does not define me– my relationship with Christ does.
That term, “happily ever after” is more towards the end of all days, wouldn’t you think? Therefore, if I’m gonna speak about my end days, my marriage wouldn’t be my prime focus. It would be my time with Jesus. Because He will be, after all, there at the end of my life, thus making it “ever after”.
My relationship with my husband makes me happy. But I’ve learned from my past relationships never to depend on men solely for your happiness.
Remember, at some point, your husband will disappoint you in some way for not meeting your expectations. And that’s totally expected because, again, he’s only human. He cannot fulfill your every need and want.
But there is someone else who can: Jesus. So by resting on that relationship over my marriage, I’m able to seek His joy and grow from there. Only God can fill those voids. Your husband is just a gift from God. And when you put it like that, you shouldn’t glorify the gift over the one who gave it to you!
3. Learning to create a happy and fulfilled life started waaay before ever getting married.
My journey to seek happiness actually started when I was still single. Because I found peace and happiness in that season of my life, I was able to open up and start dating with a purpose.
And even so, once we began to date, we both looked for ways to honor God and find happiness in ourselves as well as in each other.
The preparation we made as individuals and as a couple is what allowed us to walk into the great marriage that we have today. It would have been foolish of us to think that we could ever become happy after getting married without these crucial steps!
So whether you just got engaged this season or you’re praying to enter into that season soon, understand that getting married is only a chapter of your life.
While it’s something that enhances you, it does not define you. Your life will still go on and you still gotta do you! Your husband won’t be your answers to everything. Only you can meet the true needs of your heart by allowing God’s love to come in!
And PS- the ants were harmless and tasteless.
What do you believe will make you ultimately happy and bring you a joyous life? Share in the comments below!