When I was a child I always perceive wedding and marriage as “Happily ever after.” During the wedding day the woman will wear the most beautiful gown and walk through the aisle while her groom is waiting in front. They will answer their “I do” and then they will go to the most beautiful restaurant and celebrate with their large number of guests. And then they will live happily ever after.
I asked my parents what is “marriage for them” and they said it is about sharing their entire lives together. It is a lifelong and faithful union of a man and a woman mutually committed to sharing their life and love together. My mom said that it is sharing the happiness, joys, and dreams together.
My mom even answered that “when I got married, we made a vow to each other that we will be together from this day forward, for better, for worse, for richer, for poorer, in sickness and in health, until death do us part; that is why we really stand by it because we made that promise in front of our God.” The marriage contract is based on love and it is a life-time pledge of love to each other.
It may not be a bed of roses because trials and tests are also part of it, but my mom said when relationship is anchored on God then it will be truly blessed and guided even in worst of times.
My dad said that in marriage you have to commit and grow together. The total pledge of Christian marriage is a promise of faithfulness in body and spirit. In a marriage bond, according to the Catechism of the Catholic Church, “the consent by which the spouses mutually give and receive one another is sealed by God himself.” It is a lifelong blessing available to those couples who pledge themselves to fidelity, growth, and service.
Father Bernard Haring stated in Marriage in the Modern World that marriage is a union based on love “directed toward fruitfulness.” Married couples are also called to be fruitful by pro-creating. “Be fruitful and multiply, and fill the earth and subdue it.” To raise a Christian family should be the main focus because the Christian home is the place where children receive the first proclamation of their faith.
According to the Catechism of the Catholic Church, God himself is the author of marriage.
Therefore, the wedding is not just merely a celebration and marriage is not a purely human institution; but it is part of God’s great and majestic plans. It is neither about the food, the gown, and the number of guests on wedding day nor the contract itself and law that it entails; rather the sacrament of matrimony is the unconditional promise of common union of two people made in front of God. “They are no longer two, but one flesh.”
As a young mission worker, I’ve learned that marriage is a vocation that we should not rush into. Let us journey with our God first and focus on our relationship with Him before thinking of our love lives.