(Quote) Monica-291280 said: I think this is a very good post, but answering it, as a divorced person, is hard; I don't feel qualified, ha...
(Quote) Monica-291280 said: I think this is a very good post, but answering it, as a divorced person, is hard; I don't feel qualified, having a failed marriage, to give much advice, and I don't want to be bitter.
I will say that its important to find a person who is truly good, kind and strong in their values and determination. Other things about a person can change over time; but the inner core remains the same. Both people want to do more than just remain married, but to grow together and find ways to make their marriage stronger as years go by' Not as simple as it sounds.
I agree to a point, Monica. If the person we marry has a strong desire to be with God for eternity, then we are marrying someone trying to become a saint. Prayer together, regular Confession, Holy Communion, a day to day faithful effort to practice the virtues and a willingness to honestly communicate would make for a lifelong, holy marriage--I would think.
A therapist friend told me the biggest challenge in a marriage is for each to identify in themselves and their spouse the amount of private space and the amount of togetherness desired. Failure to know, discuss and honor this is usually the beginning of issues. One begins to feel neglected or claustrophobic but doesn't want to speak up or the spouse doesn't hear. Perceptions of each other then begin to degenerate, very gradually. Resentment builds etc. etc. So, if she is accurate (and she has counseled many couples for many years so I like hearing what she has to say), prayer, the Sacraments and truly communicating should make for a good marriage however...
... there is always the one variable. We are human.
Someone who has been a great, devout Catholic their whole life could just decide one day to dump it all. The Bible is full of such stories and we all have free will. This is where I disagree a bit with your statement, Monica. Temptation can get to anyone. What's that saying? "There but for the grace of God, go I" What if my core is good but I gradually give in on little things; pretty soon I am no longer availing myself of graces and then...I totally blow it. Was I actually not good for the first 55 years of my life? Many call it mid-life crisis. Perhaps it is as simple as letting selfishness take over.
Lest I post too much here
my bullet points for the presentation would be:
Full comprehension that without an active prayer life, together, with God as the center of the relationship, the odds are against 'til death do us part'.
A realistic view of the human condition, that is spiritually we are never at a standstill. We are either becoming holier or going downhill and downhill is always easier than uphill.
A realistic picture of crosses and trials that will likely occur during married life.
An understanding that love should be shown and spoken every day, even when one doesn't feel like it or when there is a temptation to be too busy. It comes with the vocation; just do it.