A Reflection on Marriage

A reflection on Marriage - Valentine's Day Mass 14 February 2010

 

Jack and I got married here on New Year’s Eve a few weeks ago, so I thought I’d survived, and enjoyed all the nerves that I’d experienced in this Church.  That was until Fr Richard asked us to talk about our experiences as a newly married couple to the Valentine’s Day Congregation!

Well, Jack and I are only a few weeks in and so far, so good.  But I suppose the change in our relationship didn’t begin on the day we got married but from the day we agreed to marry each other.

Jack and I have known each other since childhood and were together for about 7 years when we got engaged.  Over these years I knew I loved Jack and was happy to spend the rest of my life with him, but sub consciously we had a ‘get out clause’.  On the day we agreed to marry each other, we opted out of this ‘get out clause’.  From then we weren’t just focussed on the here and now but on the much bigger picture.

As a friend put it last night, ‘when you decide to get married, you give up notions of another life and focus on the one you have together’.

I’ve often thought that you never truly know or understand another couple’s relationship.  Just as you never truly know or understand another person’s relationship with God.  And I have always considered both to be very unique, personal and intimate.  However, Marriage is a very open demonstration of both.

When Jack and I celebrated our marriage we declared something personal, quite publicly in front of family and friends. And we celebrated not just our own relationship with each other but formally invited God to be a part of our lives together.  And today we do that in front of the wider congregation. 

Another friend brought home to us how our wedding was not just a celebration of our love, but a celebration and reminder of the sacrament of marriage too.  This friend, was feeling less positive in her own marriage.  However listening to the words of our service reminded her and her husband to be thankful for their relationship, to remember that God loves and respects their marriage and to accept Gods guidance.

I’ve also noticed over the last few weeks that as a married couple you do things that you probably wouldn’t do as boyfriend and girlfriend.  For example when I told Jack what Fr Richard asked us to do today; I think Jack thought I was joking.  And more so, when I told him I agreed!  However he asked me if it would make me happy.  And agreeing that being part of a wider Christian community is important, we agreed to stand here today.

So we’re learning that throughout marriage you do things for each other, and in the name of God that are new to you, and may involve sacrifice.  All I can say is that so far it feels good, and sharing in this union feels like a good place to be.

We pray that throughout our marriage our love and faith in each other and in God will continue to grow.