by Renee Scott

I’ve been blogging for nearly three years and I don’t know that I’ve ever written about marriage. This month as bloggers for Beautiful we have the freedom to post about whatever topic we want, so why not talk about marriage. I’ve been married for nearly 17 years, so surely I know a thing or two about being married.  In a world where the divorce rate is skyrocketing, the definition of marriage is changing, and fewer couples are choosing marriage, it’s definitely a relevant topic.

Let me start by saying, I love my husband. I may not like every moment with him, but that’s true even of my children (but that’s a whole other topic). Alton and I married young-23 and 25 years old.  We didn’t know what we were getting into, we just knew we loved each other passionately and we wanted to spend the rest of our lives together.  After only 5 months of dating, we were engaged. Ten months later, we were married.  We knew instinctively that we were made for each other.  (Ok, well maybe I knew first and he figured it out a little later than me.)  You don’t have to date for years to know that you were destined to spend your life with someone.  I’m not advocating rushing into marriage, but when you listen to God’s whispers, you trust Him and flow in His will.

The other day, I asked Alton what was the key to our marriage?  We have our ups and downs just like any other couple, but we’ve managed to stay IN love with each other.  I wondered if he would say that our marriage was great due to putting Christ first, not having a TV in the bedroom, or maybe it’s our great ability to communicate. What exactly was it for him?

I was actually a little surprised by his answer.  It wasn’t any of those things.  They are absolutely needed, but it wasn’t the key ingredient in his eye. Our success simply boiled down to a choice.  That’s right, a choice. He chooses to love me and stay committed to our relationship.

Great marriages are a choice.  A decision.  A mighty declaration between couples. There is POWER in choosing to work it out vs. divorce at the first sign of trouble.  POWER in the choice to love vs. hate.  POWER to see your spouse through the eyes of Christ vs. condemning every wrong decision they make. If you are struggling in your marriage,  choose to love within the borders of your marital vows.  If loving was easy, there wouldn’t be a need for I Corinthians 13 where the true definition of love is given.

Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud.  It does not dishonor others, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs.  Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth.  It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres.  Love never fails.

Remember it’s challenging for all of us at some point, and that you aren’t the only couple going through a rough patch.  Trust your marriage to Christ.  Allow Him to lead and guide every decision and action.  He is able and WILLING to heal your hurts and strengthen your marriage.  Let Him!

Renee ScottRenee Scott is co-founder of the popular blog, ,where she shares encouragement and inspiration to men and women all over the world.  She’s been a member of Grace Family Church for four years. She loves to run and recently completed her first half marathon. She is a wife of over 14 years and mother of two children. 

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