Marriage Tip #4: Community

Personal

Our first year of marriage was HARD.

Luke and I quickly came to realize that even though we loved each other, we were two very different people. We were raised differently. We liked different things. We had different understandings of what love, understanding, and respect were. Not to mention, it was only 6 months and 1 week from the day we started dating to the day we got married. 3 months after we got married, I got pregnant with Judah. 1 month after that, I got hired in the Communications department. 3 months after that, Luke came on as the High School Pastor. And then the day after our 1 year anniversary, I went into labor with Judah.

Needless to say, it was a whirlwind of a year. Not only that, but Luke and I were not very good at staying close during that time. Each of us said or did things that deeply hurt the other, and we fought a lot.

Don’t get me wrong, we still loved each other a lot. We still had a lot of fun together at times. We enjoyed doing things together like golf or walks around Downtown Brea. But overall, the year was rough for us.

If there was one thing I could go back and change to make a world of difference in our relationship, it would be friendships. During the whirlwind of change and adjusting and learning, Luke and I failed to remember to focus on the friendships around us. The people who were important to us. The people who encouraged us to be the husband and wife that we vowed to each other that we would be.

You see, when you’re stuck in a fight and it doesn’t feel like there’s an end in sight, sometimes it feels like no one else around you can understand. Sometimes it feels like no one around you will care. And sometimes it feels like no one around you will stick around once you share your heart. These are all the lies that I bought into. I didn’t think anyone would understand what Luke and I were going through, and if they did I didn’t think they would care, and if they did I didn’t think they would stick around once they knew what was really going on.

But that’s exactly what they were – lies. I still remember the day that Luke and I finally chose to be open with friends, and I still remember the freedom that came along with it. We talked candidly about things we were having a hard time with, the fights that we had had, the hurt that had been building up. And did they understand? YES! They talked with us about times that they had walked through the exact same things. Did they care? YES! They were actually bummed that they hadn’t been able to walk us through to healing sooner. They poured their heart and soul into us and brought so much restoration to our marriage! Did they stick around? YES! To this day, Luke and I still talk to that same couple. They still bring restoration and understanding, and they still care deeply for us.

Whatever season you’re in today, whether you’re married, single, engaged, I would encourage you to get some solid, safe people around you to walk through this crazy thing called life with you. Don’t let another day go by where you feel alone, isolated. There is so much freedom and healing in safe friendships. I believe that God really intended us for community, and that’s the reason that friendships bring so much health to our lives.

Here’s an update on where we’re at now 🙂

Luke and I are deeply in love with each other, and we strive to be close daily. Marriage may come with its challenges, but it is so worth it when you get to wake up every morning next to your best friend, grow in ways you didn’t think were possible, and celebrate the best parts of life together.

I’ve also reached out and intentionally built friendships with some safe and solid ladies around me. We build each other up and help each other grow. We encourage one another to be the best wives, moms, and business owners we can be. And we stand together even when things are tough. I’m so thankful for my girls and for the freedom that comes in having safe people around me!

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