Marriage can be excruciatingly tough, and there were seasons when I wondered if I should call it quits and get a divorce. Today, my husband Scott and I have a strong marriage and a united sense of purpose—but it wasn't always this way.
I met my husband, Scott, when I was 23 and he was 21. He was a believer and he introduced me to Jesus. We dated seven years and thought we knew each other well when we married in June 2001. But in reality? We didn't.
Sure we knew each other's quirks, likes, and dislikes, but we had no clue on how to do this thing called marriage. I came to my husband with loads of luggage and, although he was aware of the pain in my past, we hadn't truly considered how it would impact our marriage.
I was also pretty ignorant about the spiritual aspect of marriage. I didn't really know what it meant to make a lifelong commitment. Because I didn't know what God intended for the covenant of marriage, I couldn't fully comprehend the vows I was making to my husband and to God. As a result, I entered into marriage with unclear and unrealistic expectations, and I was blindsided by what marriage demanded.
Our first year of marriage was extremely difficult. Scott had saved himself sexually for marriage while I had not. Sexual intimacy was a problem for us right off the bat; I still carried a lot of guilt and shame related to the sexual sins in my past. I felt like sex was dirty even after I was married, and I wasn't able to give myself fully to my husband.1