Five Pillars Of Marriage




The issue of love in marriage seems overflogged, so I purposely do not want to bore you  today with it.

Everyone knows how important it is to marry or stay in relationship with the people they  love or have you forgotten that love keeps you going even when the road is rough? Oh yes, do  yourself the big favour, marry and be committed to the one you love. Having said that, love  will not be included as one of our five pillars of marriage today because I assume you are  in that marriage as a result of love or did it happen otherwise?

That’s true, I’m aware some people are forced into marring who they do not love, some grow  up to meet spouses as arranged by families, while others get committed to marriage just to  fulfill societal expectations. Some people also end up together out of pity or frustration  and a few sign the dotted line simply because of material attachments.

I don’t know which one applies to you, but love is expected to be the cord of marriage. With  this in mind, the pillars are:

•Humility: Living and relating with a humble person is a priceless opportunity enjoyed by a  few. The humble makes life easy for others, while unnecessary demand for respect and notice  is given a back seat as they prefer to satisfy and meet other people’s needs first. Have you  ever stopped to imagine the problems couples suffer as a result of pride? Life and even  relationship can be better if only you are prepared to take it easy with her or him. Pride  is a subtle destroyer, it manifests in diverse ways and only few people can spot it when  they’re displaying it. Haven’t you heard the expression very often? “I’m a down-to-earth  person,” but how many really are? Paul and Kish, as I choose to call them, have been married  for some time but unable to imbibe humility as the needed virtue in their home and this has  in every way made life difficult. They are both well read and involved in corporate jobs as  a source of livelihood. Kish, who had been known to be battling with a very demanding job  role, came home pretty late on a Friday night. They had earlier planned (husband and her) to  go out for a drink after work, so Paul returned much earlier than usual so that he could  give his babe a treat, but she was nowhere to be found, while her phones were also switched  off. Initially, Paul was upset but it later evolved into worry as he could not even get to  know exactly what happened to her. At about half ten, Kish walked in tired and totally short  of words. Paul unleashed his anger and his wife felt she didn’t deserve that kind of home  coming after a crazy day at work. Enraged, she told him off and reminded him of how she  picked him from the dump and brushed him to his present status.

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Being a man, Paul didn’t find this funny and as one thing led to the other, they ended up  abusing and wounding each other. Don’t you think soft words, including questions and  answers, bring peace? All Paul needed was to show some care when the wife came in so  worn-out and Kish, in her own part, would have explained to her man why the phones were off  and the challenges that kept her so late even at the expense of their Friday nightout.

In other words, be humble enough to hear your spouse out before explosion and don’t make  mountains out of molehills. Stay simple and stop reminding your spouse of where he or she  was when you met. Was marriage not designed to bring two people together and benefit from  each other? Please, be happy you have contributed to your partner’s life, no need to use it  as blackmail. Humility makes you put other people higher than you even thought when in  reality you are up there.

•Forgiveness: “Love covers a multitude of offences,” is one quote we’ve all heard before,  but does “cover” connote forgiveness or overlooking? Whatever, as long as you don’t  perpetually punish him or her for past mistakes or offence, I seem to be okay with your  definition of forgiveness. The impact of forgiveness is most felt when the offender does not  need to live in fear of the offended or have to face constant or intermittent reminder of  the past. It amuses me when I hear people say “I can forgive, but not forget.” Loss of  memory is a serious sickness so I’m not praying for you to forget things but prefer you  relate with people as if nothing bad ever happened between you. Did you get the gist? True  forgiveness is when you relate with people the way you were before the offence. This,  indeed, is a tough one and sometimes takes time. Maybe I should just share with you one of  the ways I handle offence; I simply convince myself you do not know what you are doing even  when I know you’re purposely doing something to get at me. You know what? Sometimes the  negative things people targeted at us turn for our good and they regret heavily as we reap  the benefit of their ‘evil’ plot. So, when next someone is nasty with you, simply whisper to  yourself, “he doesn’t know what he’s doing.” By so doing, it will be a lot easier to forgive  and move on.

Rita, my friend (not real name), was engaged to be married to a young man for about three  years. Parents, friends and relations knew and approved of this relationship which was not  doing badly. One Sunday morning, as she sat in church, the person sitting beside her had a  wedding invitation and she decided to peruse the lovely piece. Surprisingly, it was her  fiance who was getting married to another lady in town.

She ran to me after service to narrate the experience which, at first, sounded like a joke  but turned reality as tears flooded her well-powdered face. I couldn’t possibly tell her to  forget about the guy as I knew how far they had come, so, after much consideration, I  admonished her to forgive him. Naturally, she felt like punching me but restrained herself  when she realised I was not in any way the cause of her predicament. When she further asked  what to do, I told her, “let’s go for the wedding.” Again, she was angry at me but because  she respects me, she could not do otherwise. We prepared and went for the wedding. When the  pastor asked if someone had anything against the union, she looked at me and said “I will  raise my hand now,” then I asked, “is that what you came to do?” She bowed her head and let  the moment pass. At the reception, a nice looking young man joined our table, got attracted  to her and tried to chat her up. Today, she’s happily married to him with four kids while  the former guy has none and the marriage had long ended—the wife could not cope with his  infidelity.

Rita still calls to find out how he’s doing. She’s forgiven him completely and besides,  she’s very happy in her marriage, so it’s as if she never really lost anything.

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