Unfortunately Rose Kennedy knew well what it meant to forgive an unfaithful husband, and her memory stands as the strong, faithful wife and mother.
When one looks at the present day statistics regarding the permanence of marriage, those figures can be discouraging. How can anyone who is considering marriage insure that it will last?
A FIRM COMMITMENT
Unfortunately, many enter marriage with no firm intention to make it last. Their thinking is that if things don’t go well, the marriage can be dissolved and the same process repeated until the “right one” comes along. Jesus affirmed God’s design for marriage from the beginning when He said that a man is to leave his father and mother and cleave to his wife (Matt. 19:5).
One young wife who believed in and understood this commitment promised her husband, “I will never leave you. If you wrinkle, I will still love you, because I will be wrinkled too. If you fail in business, I will do my best to pinch pennies to make the budget work. If your health fails, I will do my best to nurse you back to health. I will feed you, bathe you, sit up with you– anything – except leave you. We are one and where you are I want to be.”
That kind of commitment (based on understanding of Scripture) produces long, happy marriages.
ADEQUATE FINANCIAL SUPPORT
It has often been stated that the number one cause of marital unhappiness is due to the stress that results from financial strain. It has been said, that two can live as cheaply as one, provided one doesn’t eat! Couples must learn to live within the limits of their income. They should count the cost (Luke. 14:28) and budget expenses. Self discipline must be applied in order to live within a budget. The worst possible scenario is to become a victim of easy credit.
A WILLINGNESS TO FORGIVE
All of us make mistakes. We sometimes make thoughtless comments that injure or hurt the feelings of our mate. The family often becomes the object of our frustration due to problems experienced elsewhere. In such times we need to learn to ask for forgiveness as well as be willing to forgive (Eph. 4:32). One of the most important phrases of a successful marriage is, “I am sorry. Please forgive me.”
When considering marriage, it is important to find the right person. However, it is more important to be the right kind of person yourself. If you will bring that to the marriage altar, you will have a better chance for success.