Looking at the institution of marriage, I have come to realize that one of the major demands for a successful marriage is the sacrifice of personal freedom. There have been quite several times I had to give up my freedom to accept what is both beneficial for us, and some of these times I accept hesitantly, only for it to make sense later. Love demands that you just can’t go where you want to go or eat what you want to eat or buy anything you want to buy. It denies you of living for self alone, it demands sacrificing self! It demands living for the BIG PICTURE!
Our self-serving nature comes to test in marriage. There are many opportunities every day to sacrifice for our spouse, but we fail often. We struggle with feeling to be served than to serve, and most times we unconsciously accept that it is more blessed to receive than to give. Think of how awesome it would be if we compete with our spouse on who would do the most for each other. Then the husband will no longer have a rigid role play of dos and don’ts for a “man”; and as Joyce Meyer once cited “the wife will no longer linger in bed thinking if I lie here 5 more minutes, he would get up and make the coffee”.
No relationship demands a life of Christ from us like marriage. The truth is every new day we will have to fight the good fight for our marriage, a fight against self-centeredness, a call to love selflessly and exhibit Christ to our spouse. 1 Cor 13 underscores this point stating, “Love does not seek for itself”. Forget about a healthy relationship if you’re not ready to swallow your pride, to sacrifice your freedom and comfort. Marriage does not demand 50:50; it demands giving your 100% regardless of the quantity you will be receiving.
The more you give-up, the healthier your relationship becomes, the more you withhold, the sicklier it tends. Sacrifice is painful at the time, but it surely builds the foundation of trust for tomorrow and next; while selfishness kills marriage today and forever.