Christian Marriage Counselor: How to Remove Marriage Fear
By Abby Peng , December 07, 2017 06:12 AM
As people are further and further away from God's will, their views on marriage and love become corrupted. Same-sex marriage is legal in many countries, but it is against God's basis for marriage: the union of one man and one woman.
How to alleviate single Christians' fear of marriage under the circumstance of chaotic marriage ideas?
Sister Zhou, an experienced Christian marriage counselor, shared her answer in an interview with Christian Times, a Beijing-based Christian newspaper in China.
Christian Times: Most marriages in society with corrupt concepts of marriage fail, so it generates unreasonable fear of marriage in some single female Christians who don't want to get married. Could you explain the real significance of God-given marriage?
Sister Zhou: The world is indeed corrupt, while God created marriage for redemption. In marriage, the husband or wife touches the other's emotional wounds so it's normal to worry about marriage.
God will guide us to experience some sort of healing through marriage. Every marriage will be sewed up by about 2,500 to 3,000 pieces. Marriage is not merely a union of a couple's bodies and souls. Before becoming one flesh and being completly united, the couple has to overcome every wound. They build trust and dependence in each other. The long process needs years' of effort.
If single Christian women want a great return from marriage, they may need to invest for the long haul. The return is growth rather than simple happiness. If you enter marriage with such an attitude, the unnecessary fear will be gone under God's grace.
Marriage without God rarely succeeds. Normally, the first year of a Christian marriage is tough because the two require the other to act based on biblical teachings. But after the first year, things get better because of the hope offered by the Bible and marriage standards and blueprints provided by God.
Christian Times: Some single Christian women believe that one shouldn't get married until she is ready, otherwise she may not handle problems well in marriage. However, she may find herself immature in many areas as she gets older and dares not enter marriage. What are the marriage requirements?
Sister Zhou: Premarital counseling is enough for a couple who loves each other. The point is that a lot of problems appear after marriage. If you stay fearful, you will never get married.
The marriage requirement is that a Christian couple feels well prepared and confirm never abandoning each other before God. What's more, read the book Preparing for Marriage (by Dennis Rainey) so you will know what to prepare for marriage.
Christian Times: Some sisters fear marriage out of the belif that God will not give them partners they like due to their high standards. When they tell these standards to God in prayer, they worry about whether God wants them to lower the standards that are too proud in God's eyes. So they are entangled in their mind. What is the right standard for future partners?
Sister Zhou: If you set up high standards yet worry about God saying no, give up your own criteria because you believe that God plans the best for you. Of course you can keep your criteria, but the right one given by God is a better fit for you. Moreover, God will give you a clear answer if you seek His will and confirm with Him, our heavenly father.
Besides, how do singles discover more appropriate standards? Ask married people what their standards are. Maybe the same values, hobbies, or circle of friends are helpful to marriage, but those don't guarantee a successful marriage. A couple who both love and pursue God have a better chance of success.
Pay attention to the many standards established from the female's angle. A man may not care for or need those things.
Personally I think that you should ask God to bring the best for you rather than ask too much because you don't know who suits you best or perfectly about yourself. Sure, you can ask for anything. If your heavenly Father grants it, be grateful; if not, be thankful because he will give you a better one.
Christian Times: A large portion of single sisters hold that marriage is like a fairy tale where two people in love can enjoy sweetness and happiness when they are together. However, marriage is not so simple as that. How should two people who love each other manage a happy and lasting marriage?
Sister Zhou: Managing a long and happy marriage is a very complicated issue. It's relevant to marriage preparation and how to create an environment in the first year of marriage. The most important thing is that the two are resolved not to withdraw from the relationship.
Second, you need great mercy and forgiveness from your partner. You will develop common habits then your families of origin will understand each other. After that, you will understand your partner's pain caused by his or her childhood.
- Translated by Karen Luo
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