He’s an engineer, you are nurse. He plays golf, you have coffee with your girlfriends. He wants to go to the mountains, you want to go to the beach. He has a fast-track 10-year plan, you just want to raise a family. He goes there, you go here. He wants this, you want that. Your ways could not be more separate.
What happened? When you were dating, all you wanted to do was be with him and him with you. You couldn’t imagine a world so separated. You thought you would do everything together, live life together in the same direction. You both were inseparable. Can you relate?
We were there. After we were married and had our first child, I went back to college to attend medical school. I wanted to be a doctor more than anything, almost more than being a mom, wife, unified family. It was my passion and I was sure it was my calling. My husband wanted to have his own business, of any kind. He was tired of working in retail and restaurant management. He wanted something of value that he could build. He found an opportunity that led him to the path he was seeking.
We both were heading where we wanted to go…but…far away from each other. We didn’t intend for that to happen, we just lost sight of our passion of living life together. We started following the crowd, working jobs that led us in separate directions. There was no stopping us. We had our lives already set in motion. We thought that was what we were supposed to do…to be successful…to be happy…to be fulfilled.
Thankfully, something stopped us in our tracks and helped us to realize that we were separating, and separating fast. In no time, we would forget who we were together. We would have been living two completely different and separate lives. We would have forgot why we even decided to get married, or wanted to be together, to live life together.
Do you notice the theme here? Separate!
Let’s look at the word Separate and see how much havoc and can be on a marriage.
- to keep apart or divide, as by an intervening barrier or space:
- to set apart; disconnect; dissociate:
- to remove or sever from association, service, etc., especially legally or formally:
- existing or maintained independently:
Nothing about the word Separate indicates a good solid marriage. It’s all about being an individual, having barriers, being disconnected, exist independently. It’s a complete separation of being joined together. It goes completely against marriage.
So why do we go our separate ways after we are married?
Should you abandon your dreams and calling? No…but I do believe that if you decide to get married that your future should be discussed and figured out before the wedding day. Learning what each other wants out of life, career and family is vital and could save much heartache in the future.
Instead of giving up on your dreams, can you find a way to meld both of what you feel led to do to create a powerhouse team, fighting for your marriage instead of against it, working towards your future together instead of separately? After all when you are married you will be “joined” together, as one.
What if you’ve already been married for years and it just feels like you keep getting further and further away from each other?
When we realized what was happening in our marriage, we made a decision, together, to rejoin what we were unintentionally separating. God says ”let no one split apart what God has joined together.” (Mark 10:9) That includes you, the couple. You are not to split apart or separate what God has joined together!
We decided to find common ground and a dream we could work on together. I knew my calling was to help people, in some way. He needed to build a business that he could be proud of. For the next 10 years, we worked together building his business and helping others, while still working jobs, raising a family and homeschooling.
How do you find common ground if you and your spouse are separated in life goals and passions?
- What are your passions and dreams? Can a part of those dreams be used to do something together?
- Serve together in church.
- Have a common goal and vision for helping others and find a place you can serve.
- Find a hobby that you both can enjoy together and do on a consistent basis.
- Work on a project together that you both are interested in. Use each of your strengths to help make the project work.
- Lay aside your dreams for a while and help your spouse realize his or hers. Help them build something great. During that time, you may learn many valuable lessons to help build your dreams and goals in the future. What you sow into others will be returned to you; sow & reap.
We do not have to follow the rest of the world and seek our own individual career paths. When we do that it will only lead to separation in our marriages (check the divorce stats). Quit following the crowd and “keeping up with the Jones!”
What is important is that you work together as a team, find common ground if it’s been lost and build a family together.
Having the big house, driving the nicest cars, eating at the fanciest restaurants will not bring you happiness. Building your marriage, joining toughest in dreams and goals, having a marriage partner, serving each other and raising your family is what will supply you with the happiness you are seeking.
Let no one split apart what God has joined together. – Mark 10:9
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