When Marriage Gets Tough

Believe it or not, there are some good reasons to stay married—even when you want to call it quits.

"Divorce isn't the unforgivable sin," a friend hinted, not so subtly, after hearing my remorse over marrying a man with whom I had so little in common. From our first meeting and throughout our dating, Kevin and I had been proof that opposites attract. He was the wild type—a tattooed, leather-clad biker whose first love had been his Harley until he'd met Christ six months before meeting me. To be honest, Christ and the Harley still vied for first place. His closet was filled with bike parts, and the motorcycle "herself" rested in the middle of his living room when not in use.

I, on the other hand, was a straight-laced "good girl" who listened to Christian music, worked a Christian job, and spoke fluent Christianese. I had my own "idols," though, and at 26, marriage was one of them.

Kevin and I met at a Christian singles retreat. By the end of the retreat, I'd made a new friend—but assured myself that was all. We were just too different to be more.

Kevin talked little, but when he did, it was often about the Bible. He was refreshingly genuine.

We began to pray and attend Bible study together. After a few months, he proposed. Despite all the good memories we were making, we were also beginning to disagree often. I assured myself, however, that marriage would make us "one" on issues of childrearing, spending, and the many other annoying differences we faced.

As any married person could have told me, that was an erroneous assumption. Marriage only magnified our differences. We fought regularly, and our life together hurt. Soon I found myself pondering my friend's advice. After all, I reasoned, Christians aren't perfect. What if I married the wrong person? Why stay married if it's all about fighting? Why be unhappy?

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May 25

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