Anytime I shoot a wedding, while watching the bride and groom make their wedding vows to one another, I can't help but re-live how utterly scary that moment was for me. Over 5 years ago I made a promise to a woman who, at the time I didn't realize that there was so much more to know about. The crazy thing was that I was saying "I do" to a person I had so much more to learn about and I was resolving to commit myself to her for the rest of my life! With that I echo wise words passed down to me from someone very long ago...
"Don't spend so much on a wedding that you forget about the marriage..."
I think I would be doing a major disservice to my generation and those that would come after me if I didn't stress the importance of the decision you make when you marry someone... this will be the person who will see you at your greatest AND your weakest. This person you marry will be the one that you may raise children with. This partner in life will be the one to brace you, embrace you, encourage you, love you, and whilst at the same time unintentionally (or not) hurt you. He or she will be the one to both wipe your tears and at times... cause them. And yet... she (or he) will be the one that you commit to with joy every single day of your life. That's why it's of the utmost importance to not rush into a decision like marriage.
Here are a few things I have found in my short 5 years that I believe continues to fire me up in marriage:
One, faith is huge. My wife and I believe that because we know of the great love of Jesus Christ (and uncanny love for us), it just makes it so much easier to love and forgive one another even when we make mistakes. We believe that a historical Jesus laid his life on the line to pay for the penalty of our mistakes and our weaknesses... this is the bedrock of where we learn how to sacrificially love one another (Romans 5:8).
Two, one day at a time. Another wise owl told me it best to take things one day at a time. Our first year of marriage was absolutely difficult. From getting to know someone and their weaknesses in life to allowing them to see me at my worst was very difficult to swallow ~ one day at a time means to discipline myself to not be hasty and jump the gun. To look at this moment as a moment that will soon pass, but more importantly - be in the moment.
Three, love with action... love with sacrifice. I must have said "I love you" to my sweet Annie hundreds of times by now, but none ever so strongly or passionately than with my actions. And the kicker is that it's usually shown in the relatively mundane things in life like washing dishes, doing the laundry, cleaning the toilets (all non-glamourous or romantic things I tell you!). I can say this... that in doing these things when not asked... I can't help but feel like I'm honoring this woman and treating her the best way i've found so far... and that's through sacrifice. I can only pray that my son will reciprocate this same love whether he gets married someday or not.
Hey, thanks for stopping by and reading this rant! A bit of a break from the pictorial blogs, but I hope this helps you as you also accumulate thoughts on marriage and life!