A marriage is a life long agreement to be a part of another person's life, unknowing what the future holds for either person. It is a willingness to stand beside that person come what may, to encourage them when they have no courage of their own to face the crap that life will throw at you; to be their strength in the face of their failure and weakness; to show them that they have value when the world and everyone else says they are not worth the space they fill. There are no guarantees when you make that commitment, no guarantee that life will never send you hard times; no guarantee that the other person will never make a mistake, will always meet your expectations; no guarantee that you will be happy and prosperous forever after. A marriage is meant to demonstrate the love of Christ for His Body and to demonstrate the love of His people for Him. Can you love your spouse like Christ loved the Church? Can you sacrifice yourself for their benefit? No, you cannot. Unless you allow Christ to have control of your heart; unless you give those failures and those unmet expectations to God; unless you cry out to Him with each disappointment; cry out to Him with each knife in the heart....or back. It is only with His presence in you, His strength in your heart that you can live up to this agreement that you made before Him, to love this other person, to honour them and stand by them. People will say you are a fool; they will say that you deserve better; they will tell you that you have every right to turn away and give up, but people are not God. God's ways are not our ways, His thoughts are not our thoughts. He is holy, He is all-knowing, He is all-wise; He sees your journey together from start to finish, He knows how it should end. He knows the ways that He will bless you both with companionship, true enduring love, and the comfortable peace of a relationship that has been through hell and survived for His glory. Trust Him to give you strength, patience, peace, more patience and more strength. He will give you eyes to see your spouse as He does; that your spouse is not the true enemy, eyes to see that the true enemy is the Deceiver who has lied to God's children since the beginning of time. Don't fall for those lies about your spouse, the one that you chose to love from the beginning. Trust God to give you everything you need to walk out the road ahead. It is only through the walking that you can find this out for yourself. I know these things to be true because I have walked it.