Fight the urge to correct and criticize, instead be a good listener, be a source of support and encouragement to the people in your life. Seek to understand him or her without being judgmental.
A woman can’t change a man because she loves him. A man changes himself because he loves her Steve Harvey.
1.True love cannot be found where it truly doesn’t exist, nor can it be hidden where it truly does.
2. Forgiveness is the final form of love.
3. I never knew how to worship until I knew how to love.
4.You don’t love a woman because she’s beautiful; she is beautiful because you love her.
5. The first duty of love is to listen.
6.Age does not protect you from love but love to some extent love protects you from age.
7.A heart that loves is always young.
8. Love is the triumph of imagination over intelligence.
9. Don’t forget to love yourself.
Before marriage takes you unawares, are you prepared? This is an excellent article for many who are longing to make the right choice when it comes to marriage, I trust you would learn so much from this article.
For emphasis sake, ‘MARRIAGE’ is not ‘WEDDING’. Wedding and marriage are two different things. A wedding is a ceremony for the marriage, while marriage is the purpose for the wedding (Selah).
Before Marriage Takes You Unawares
Let’s take a quick glimpse into the beautiful love story of Rebecca and Isaac in Genesis 24:1-67
Abraham was old and he told his oldest servant to get his son Isaac a wife. Actually, Abraham wanted him to take the wife from his kindred (Abraham’s kindred).
Of course, his servant obeyed and travelled to his master’s hometown. When he got there, his prayer was that any young woman who came to draw water at the well and gave his camels would be his wife, Rebecca became his answered prayer.
Sharply, the guy met with her people and did marriage proposal on behalf of Isaac. Rebecca too, without much delay agreed and followed the servant to her soon to be husband. Isaac loved Rebecca when he finally met her and the Bible recorded that He was comforted after his mother’s death and they lived happily ever after…smiles.
It was a sudden marriage, wasn’t it? The marriage took Rebecca unawares. Now, my question is this, what if Rebecca was not prepared for marriage? Have you ever thought about that? Take a look at the verse below.
Genesis 24:67 “Isaac brought Rebekah into his mother’s tent. Isaac married Rebekah. Rebekah became his wife. And Isaac loved Rebekah. So, Isaac was happy again, after the death of his mother”.
Do not forget that Isaac was the only son of Sarah which implies that he loved his mother so very too much. For him to be happy again after the death of his mother showed that Rebecca also became a mother for him. How could she have achieved that if not that she was prepared for marriage?
Sister, how about you? What if a sudden marriage comes up, can you handle it? Funny enough, there are numerous sisters having a couple of night vigils, earnestly seeking God’s face for marriage whereas, on the other hand, they are not near preparation. My dear, God is a just God. He will not allow his son to suffer in your hands.
Ermmmm, by the way, Marriage is not a car which you can purchase before learning how to drive it. It’s a different ball game entirely, you don’t wait to get into it before you prepare, you prepare ahead.
So how do you prepare? Quickly I will share these few points on preparation.
Before marriage takes you unawares, your relationship with God must be intact. If you can’t pray or study your Bible for a quality time alone now that you are single, you can’t do that when you are married. Your relationship with God is very germane.
As a wife and a mother, you will need to be sensitive to the things around you. So if your relationship with God is not smoothed out now, how do you want to become a wife and a mother…Or do you think being a wife and a mother is a cheap role? Please wake up to the truth!
Also, some challenges may surface in marriage but your patience and faith in God will see you through. So tell me, how do you want to cope if your spirit man is still suffering from obesity? Daniel 11:32b “…but the people that do know their God shall be strong, and do exploits”.
You want to exploits in your marriage? KNOW GOD!
Don’t be a crybaby, a mood swing fellow, and a hot-tempered woman. Don’t be that woman people flee from anytime you are angry. No man wants a woman who frowns always.
If it will take you to watch comedy every day just to laugh, please do. Although, that won’t last, let the word of God dwell in you richly so that you can overflow with joy. This is the real deal, Joy from within, Joy from your spirit man…Glory!
Before marriage takes you unawares, you must be a fighter; fight against depression with God’s word. Depression is a disease spreading fast these days, come off it! Learn to manage your emotions, don’t allow your emotions to manage you.
(I recommend MANAGING YOUR EMOTIONS by Joyce Meyer)
#3 BUILD UP YOUR CHARACTER
A Yoruba adage says “Iwa lewa obinrin” which means “Character is the beauty of a woman”. That’s quite true. No matter how facially beautiful you look, if you have a bad character, your beauty will not be recognized.
I would like to single out ‘abusive words’. You want to get married and you still own a Master’s degree in abusive words, then, you are not ready.
How do you intend being a mother when all you know how to do is to reign abusive words on your children? Don’t you know words are powerful?
Some mothers complain their child is not brilliant…Of course, when you keep calling your child coconut head. How will you use the same mouth you use to worship God to reign curses on others? Please, let your words be pleasant.
Proverbs 16:24 “Pleasant words are like the honeycomb, sweet to the soul, and health to the bones”
When marriage takes you unawares, Bless your home, your husband and your children with your words. Well, as for me I choose to be a blessing, you should choose to do the same.
#4 BE VAST
Before marriage takes you unawares, you must be knowledgeable.
Know what’s happening around you and know what is happening in the world. Also, be interested in the world of sports (you may end up getting married to someone who loves sport) kikiki loud out loud.
Don’t be a novice.
I bet some ladies don’t even know the likes of Tiger Woods, Usain Bolt, Serena Williams etc.
Before marriage takes you unawares, know business deals.
Know how to operate some electrical appliances. Expose yourself to many vital things now that you are single so that when you get married, you won’t depend on your husband for things like operating the television with remote control and so that you won’t keep chasing visitors away from your home due to your constant behavior of putting them in darkness anytime they come visiting since you can’t put on the generator just because your husband is not around.
The proverbs 31 woman is vast…Check this out…
Proverbs 31:16 “She considers a field and buys it: with the fruit of her hands she plants a vineyard”.
How did she buy a field if not that she heard about it somewhere?
Before marriage takes you unawares, be a rounded woman who are wise.
When your husband talks politics, tell him the latest about Donald Trump, when he talks football tell him English premiership top scorer, when he talks business tell him the richest businessmen, when he talks Bible, pour everything down.
#5 BE SKILLFUL
Before marriage takes you unawares, learn various skills.
Not necessarily for business, but for your home. There are several things to learn these days. Don’t be left out.
That proverbs 31 woman is a fashion designer, a cook, a business woman and a farmer.
Be fully prepared, who knows, your own Isaac too may show up at an unexpected time.
Credit: Rebecca Agbragu
Unfortunately, many women are in toxic relationships. These toxic relationships can be hard to spot, as they often come in pretty packages that seem wonderful on the outside, but are full of issues and hurt on the inside. Take a look at these top 10 relationships to avoid and do the needful.
A relationship full of drama
Some people thrive on constant drama. They covet it like oxygen and can’t seem to get enough of relationship dramas. There are people who are not happy unless their relationship is full of drama and it is best to steer clear of such people who aren’t happy unless there’s some sort of high-drama situation happening.
A relationship fueled by passion alone
While passion is a necessary ingredient in relationships, too much of it can quickly lead to a toxic, unhealthy relationship. Passion can lead to uncontrollable jealousy and fights. Couples know that some jealousy and arguing are natural, but overly passionate relationships experience these qualities to the point that they begin to take over any good times in relationships.
A controlling relationship
It’s natural to care about someone and want what’s best for them, but it’s quite another thing to attempt to control their every move. It is dangerous to be in relationships that revolve around one person’s control over the other. If you don’t feel free to be yourself, make your own choices, and decide things for yourself, you may be in an unhealthy, controlling relationship. Staying in such relationship can hinder your personal growth and make you think you are happy when you are not.
A relationship built on lies
When a relationship is built on lies, it is impossible for trust to be present. People whose relationships are built on lies can’t be healthy, functional couples. No matter how small, lying in relationships is a slippery slope. It may seem harmless, but it harms the relationship built around them. A relationship built on lies is dead on arrival.
A relationship with a bully
If you are in a relationship where your partner has significantly more power and control over you, there’s a good chance you are in an abusive relationship. Bullies function by maintaining enough power that their partner is afraid to challenge them, physically, mentally and emotionally. This relationship runs on fear, which is the opposite of love. If you find yourself in this exhausting, hurtful relationship, exit immediately.
A relationship with a critic
It’s natural to turn to your partner for advice, and to seek their approval, as any solid relationship should feature more mutual support than harsh criticism. If your partner shreds every little detail of your life, from how you do your job to how you dress to how you relate with your friends and criticizes you constantly, they don’t love you. He or she shouldn’t become a source of stress.
A punitive relationship
Punitive relationships occur when one person punishes their partner’s when their behaviour falls short of their own personal expectations. The major issue with punitive types is that their instinct is to punish, without adequate communication, feedback, and understanding. Being in such a relationship is not only disrespectful but it creates conflict because it’s only a matter of time before the partner who’s belittled starts harbouring negative emotions toward the other.
A relationship with an enabler
A relationship that hinges on one person enabling the other is toxic regardless of who is doing it. When you put your life on hold for your partner or put their needs before your own always, you are enabling them. When all your life revolves around your partner and you see them as helpless, these are signs you are in a toxic relationship. You need to get out fast.
An all consuming relationship
When all you keep thinking about all the time is your partner, that’s a red flag. It’s acceptable to have your partner significant on your mind but when it starts crossing over the line to obsession, you should bail immediately.
A conveniently comfortable relationship
A convenient relationship is familiar, comfortable. It makes you feel safe but not complete. Comfort doesn’t equal happiness. These convenient relationships just hold you back from finding true happiness and love.
Love. It’s a commonly thrown around four-letter word. “I love macaroni and cheese.” “I love Vanilla Ice.” (Remember that?) Sometimes, even an “I love him” or “I love her.”
What is real love? And is there a difference between that and the heart-pounding adrenaline rush I feel when I see…? You know the person I’m talking about. That hot guy playing basketball at the gym… the cute girl who makes eye contact as she passes by… the friend of a friend of a friend… maybe a best friend. It’s that person we keep track of when he or she is in the same room, whose comments and actions we analyze to no end.
There are a few things love isn’t. Love isn’t a feeling. Although real love is often accompanied by strong feelings, love does not equate with the sense of floating on clouds. Unlike the type of love that movies, television, and songs portray, people in love don’t always feel ooey gooey around each other.
A relationship wouldn’t last long on emotions. In fact, knowledge is the basis of a healthy relationship.
Knowing about the other person is key. I used to and sometimes still do “fall in love” with guys that I have never had a conversation with, whether it be a movie star in the latest romantic drama or the guy sitting behind me in a calculus class. I would know his name and his face, and that was the extent of my knowledge of him. If I were to start a relationship with him, who knows where that would lead us!
Knowing about the person’s personality and character are so important. One good test is to list the qualities that attract us to that guy or girl. If the list is long, we know a lot about them and like those things. If the list is short, we either don’t know a lot about them or we know a lot but aren’t attracted to his or her personality.
Another important factor in a relationship is common life goals. If the relationship is going to be long term, we need to be going in the same general direction as the other person. If his dream is to travel as an international businessman and she wants to be a realtor in a single location, conflict could arise. If she wants to live in the countryside with nature and he likes the hustle and bustle of a big city, there are potentially serious problems with the direction of the couple’s lives.
Love isn’t sex. That statement alone goes against a lot of what the entertainment industry feeds us. Whenever two people hook up in pop culture, they have sex. Without showing some of the unpleasant realities of premarital and extramarital sex, it is drawn up to be a wonderful, fun recreational activity.
Sex is created for marriage–a long-lasting commitment between a couple. Outside of marriage, sex can have harsh consequences. Pregnancy, sexually transmitted diseases, guilt, insecurity, and shame can follow. A relationship based on lust can only last as long as the two are physically close and find each other sexually attractive.
Love is a choice. It’s a commitment. Although feelings will accompany love, and although sex will be a part of marriage, a lasting, healthy relationship cannot be based on these things.
The Bible says that God is love. God, as our designer and creator, made us with needs for love. Do you ever wonder why we constantly seek love from others but never feel completely satisfied? It’s because God designed us for an unconditional love, and we, as people, are flawed.
People, whether friends, family, or your significant other, will invariably let you down at some point. God wants us to find our need for love and acceptance in him first. One person cannot meet all our needs, even if he’s funny or she’s thoughtful.
We were made for God’s love, and God’s love alone can fill that need. Only after experiencing and knowing the unconditional love that God has for us, the love that drove God to send his Son to die for us on earth, can we begin to love others with the same quality of unconditional love.
TRUE LOVE 101: What does it take to be that significant other?
- Sees the other person as perfect
- Wants to get own needs met; selfish
- Spends all time with the other person
- Quickly “falls” for the other person
- Other relationships and friendships deteriorate
- Dependence on the other person causes jealousy frequently
- Lasts for a short period of time
- Distance strains and often puts an end to the relationship
- Quarrels are serious and common
- Quarrels can seriously damage the relationship
- Sees the other person’s flaws and still loves them
- Wants to serve the other person; selfless
- Still spends time with others
- Takes time to build the relationship
- Other relationships and friendships grow stronger
- Trust and understanding results in less severe and less frequent jealousy
- Encompasses a long-term commitment
- Survives and sometimes is strengthened because of distance
- Quarrels are less serious and less often
- Quarrels can strengthen the relationship
Infatuation can be so tempting. But the question is, do I want a lasting, satisfying relationship? If so, infatuation isn’t the answer. Look at your relationships through the grid above. Infatuation isn’t a bad thing, as long as we don’t base a relationship on it.
Credit: Harriet Sun