Are You Ready for Marriage?

A few weeks ago, Sarah asked me how Eric and I knew we were ready for marriage. (And if you've read a couple of our  more honest posts, you'll learn that maybe we weren't ready for marriage when we tied the knot almost five years ago.) I definitely wasn't ready to serve Eric as a Godly woman and wife should.

However, we do believe that God made us to be soul mates.

Two weeks after we starting dating, we both just knew that we'd get married. It was a total God thing. Eric had prayed about getting me to date him, and he heard God speaking to him to wait for me. We believe wholeheartedly that God affirmed and orchestrated our relationship. So, for me that was a big sign that we were meant to get married.

However--even though we both felt that--we didn't necessarily agree on when we should get married. I wanted to wait to get engaged until after college graduation, when I was settled into a job (and maybe a little older and wiser), and Eric wanted to get engaged after our junior year of college. (He ended up proposing to me right in between our two timetables, and it all worked out.)

There is really no right answer or magical formula that can be applied to every situation to test if you're ready for marriage. Rather, you must know in your heart of hearts that you want to commit to loving that person for the rest of your life.

Being ready for marriage, in my mind, is having a full, 100% commitment to that person for the rest of your life, and to working hard to love the other person as God calls us to. You are going to be together forever. Are you ready for that? I believe it will work out if you're committed to it, and are intentional about learning how to make it the best it can be. Start by telling each other everything, and you'll be off to a great start!

Eric and I didn't really argue before we got married--and we don't argue very much now, but when you live together and make big decisions together, there are more opportunities to argue. Luckily, we agree on a lot of stuff! And when we argue, it's mostly surface-level stuff because we have worked hard at developing a strong foundation of communication.

Before I got married, I believed a myth that marriage was easy and that we'd live happily ever after--effortlessly. This couldn't be farther from the truth. What we have discovered in our short four and a half years of marriage is that you must make it a priority to work on your marriage. If you sit idly by, one or both sides will probably be unhappy and you'll spend more energy arguing and reacting to situations than you would if you took some proactive steps to keep your marriage healthy. Check out our list of 12 reasons we're still married for more information.

Let us know if you have any more questions for us! It's been therapeutic for me to think back on the things that didn't go so well in our early years. Our marriage isn't perfect now--and we'll never say that it is, but as each day passes we're seeing things from a different, more mature perspective.