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16774459557_f0afb46849_zHow easy must it be to say something like, “I didn’t sign up for this,” when life changes after getting married?

How easy it must be to say something like, “I didn’t sign up for this,” when your husband loses his job and money gets tight, when he gets sick and you become the leader and money-maker for the family and care-taker of your husband, or when your husband decides he wants to go  back to school and enter a new career, or when someone else in your family is sick and it exhausts you.

It is too easy.

When life is nowhere near what you expected or planned or hoped for, and when you’re feeling down and out… that’s when we need to remember what we did sign up for — and the graces that came by doing that.

Mary at Catholic Sistas writes:

“Did I really mean the vows that I said that day in St. Anthony church? Yes? Then, I signed up for this. I also signed up for a lifetime of special graces, by virtue of receiving the Sacrament of Matrimony (graces that are not present when two people are simply cohabiting). In order to open myself up to those graces, I need to put an end to the self-pity.

“I think it’s a function of God’s perfect Wisdom that we can’t know ahead of time all of our spouses’ imperfections or all the challenges that we will face during our lives together. If we could foresee all that, would we still want to get married? Perhaps it would depend on whether God also showed us the graces he would pour out on our marriages, the growth that would result from the challenges, and the depth our married love would gain after being tested in fire. Those, too, are things we can’t anticipate before we get married, and never would be made manifest in the “trial run” of living together. When you say your vows, you sign up for unimaginable sorrows, but fathomless joys; deep valleys, but towering peaks (and a lot of flat terrain in between).”

Take comfort in your trials, because God orders all things for good in your marriage. Some of the sweetest joys in life, as Mary mentions, are found in trials that are overcome together — with prayer, love, forgiveness, sacrifice, and faith.

You can read the rest of what Mary wrote here — and you should! 😉

photo credit: John Hope Photography