Saturday 4 May 2013

Readiness for Marriage...

    Are you ready for marriage?

I get amused sometimes when I see some posts on prayers for single ladies to agree in faith on getting husbands and some even go as far as giving ultimatums. Now, this is not bad in itself, it is however, incomplete to my mind.

CAVEAT!!- This does not apply to women who are still waiting but have gone through the process. God has got your back.

Just this morning, I was led to a truth. The question, are those of us who are waiting on God for husbands really (in every sense of the word) ready? Do we just want to get married because it is a societal norm or just because our friends are getting married every other Saturday?

I'd use myself as a case study. I decided that I would get married at 23 immediately after my call to the Nigerian Bar 'or so soon thereafter'. I prayed about it and was convinced it would happen by all means. That prayer was not answered; I was still single, that year, the year after that and the year after that. I was mad at God and wondered why He did not answer me. 

The truth I failed to admit to myself was that I wasn't ready to be in a marriage of any kind. I was not fully equipped to take care of any husband or even appreciate marriage in its totality. I was operating in an illusory world of just the wedding and not the thereafter. I hadn't built character, resolve, dedication, to mention a few.

At the time I had a steady stream of toasters, however, they did not stay around for so long. In retrospect, I can say unflinchingly, they sensed my UNPREPAREDNESS. I had unknowingly emitted signals of 'not-being-ready'. Small wonder, the status quo did not change.

In recent times, I found that I needed to go through the process of refining by God. It has been tough, I might add. I have been learning about communication, honing my listening skills, humility, feminine strength, tolerance, giving of myself and resources, sustaining friendships ( I have a phobia for prolonged friendships) and being productive,; first to myself and then to the people around me. 

I became so lost in this school that the 'surface desire' to have a man to call husband faded into the background. I got so wrapped up in adding value to my life that I began to attract many men. These 'many men' were of all kinds o! Spiro dey, Carnal dey, every every day. I attracted them and like white on rice. 

From this is a lesson 
·         Every good thing is attractive
        ·         Everything that has value is sought after.

Still going through the preparation of the Almighty himself, he kept sieving and sieving and totally removing the unwanted in my life. The funny thing I noticed is that where I may have been deceived before by those 'highly spiro' brothers who had character defects, I am now more spiritually conscious and discerning. 

You see, that trap would never catch me. I had to go through the fire to know that. I am not there yet, where I can say this is CERTAINLY the man that is purpose-built for me but I can proudly say that by the grace of God, I will not be making those 'all-too-common mistakes' one finds in many-a-marital-arrangement today.

One thing keeps me going too, It's the deep knowing that God CHERISHES me, and because I am CONVINCED of this, I am hardly perturbed by the 'every-Saturday-wedding-sprees'. I attend as many as I can and am happy for them. I am cognizant of three things:

1. It is their time (to everything on earth, there are times and seasons) to get married.

2. Some of the couples have gone through the refining process, they probably learnt the lessons I should have, sooner than I did.

3. I'd never make the mistakes that those who didn't go through the refining process made.

To me, it's a win-win situation.

Finally Brethren. I choose not to surround myself with ladies whose constant conversation revolves around, how to get a husband, who and who are getting married, the 'seeming' lack of good men and other in- consequentialities (my invented word, synonym for trivialities).

- If I unfortunately find myself in the midst of these ladies, I have learned to tune out from those conversations and tune into God's word concerning me. This is extremely necessary because women generally are pressured when faced with constant talks of areas which we are lacking or at a disadvantage. We tend to begin to worry unnecessarily.

  • Add value to yourselves, mentally, spiritually, emotionally, socially etc.
  • Go through the refining process of building character and learning purpose (you will want to end up with a reflection of you, being the reflection of God, yes?).
  • Relax, Breathe, There's no hurry. It isn't a competition.
  • Always ask God, to rejuvenate you, your skin, your looks, and the whole of you. You want to look dashing when you meet price charming, right? (I usually like it when a guy guesses my age to be younger than I actually am, It's the Lord's doing and it is marvellous in my eyes, hehehe!) 
  • Surround yourselves with purpose driven women, you can never go wrong with a group of women fulfilling God's purpose. They are never idle and they spur you on to be better than you are presently.

This is by no means exhaustive but since I am not trying to write a book here, I must call it day on this. Let the Holy Spirit teach us and guide us appropriately.

-       Kemi Mildred Hughes

About the writer: Kemi is a legal practitioner by day and writer by night. An unfinished work in progress, she is a Christian with a love for God. She especially has a passion to reach out to young females. She is single and lives in Port Harcourt, Nigeria. 

Thank you so much Kemi.

Are you ready for marriage?

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  1. I will be publishing an article on Monday about ‘Why do you have to trim me?’ The article stemmed from how God is pruning me in respects of marriage and as a woman.

    You actually explained my thought, and I'm certainly sure that, most people may have similar thoughts that they are not comfortable to discuss as we want to appear perfect and fully ready.

    Your post can also being linked to plans for one's life, God may delay a plan for one's life as He may wants us to mature in certain things before He grants us our desire.

    Delays are blessings in disguise as God’s pruning is usually to prevent disasters in future. Thank God for God’s mercy.

    Men, Are you ready for marriage? Men, while you are preparing for marriage, ensure you take the below points into consideration:

    Understand the purpose and responsibilities God has given you as a man.

    Prepare yourself to be the PPP (Provider, Priest and Protector) of your house.

    Start praying to God to place the love of your wife into your heart.

    Work on your character, start learning what it means to love your wife and your children in the biblical way. In other words, start learning how you will be a good father and husband in your household.

    Be ready to be the RIGHT man to your wife. Are you easy to live with?

    Are you flexible and are you willing to put your beloved’s needs before your own?

    Are you ready to be responsible for your wife not just yourself?

    Understanding the foundation of remaining faithful.

  2. Nice write up. Points out what I want most ladies to take note of which is: FOCUS ON BEING A BETTER PERSON. The best way to do that is to set your eyes upon Christ. Seek ye first the kingdom of God and all other things would be added to you.

    1. Thank you Bernado. Yes, we ladies must focus on being a better person and learning how we can be a helper within a marriage. Did you read my comment in regards to how guys can prepare themselves for marriage?

  3. Kemi, All I can say is GOD BLESS YOU for this in BIG BOLD LETTERS! i read this and i am so filled with joy because I agree with you. I will now share my personal experience and add a few things if u dont mind :). I started to see this topic as an issue when it became a conversation everywhere. A friend's prayer everytime she sees me: “before d end of the yr u will get married or find ur man..blah blah blah”. She would be surprise when I refused to say Amen or respond, some times I would though but it became a constant thing. One day I said to her “ if it will happen when am 30 years, then its worth waiting, as long as its God will!", to which she would quickly say God

    After being in relationship with the wrong people or shuld i say wrong relationships, I made a conscious decision to stop and just wait for God and that the next person, should be the ONE. These two verses really helped shaped my life:
    1. seek ye first the kingdom of God and every other thing will be added unto you. Matt 6:33
    2. Your beauty should not come from outward adornment, such as elaborate hairstyles and the wearing of gold jewelry or fine clothes. Rather, it should be that of your inner self, the unfading beauty of a gentle and quiet spirit, which is of great worth in God’s sight. 1peter3: 3-4

    These verses changed my perspective. therefore, or my fellow ladies these are my advice:

    1. - Your existence in life is not ONLY so you can get married! Ladies get that!
    2. -Work on urself in ur singleness. Serve God and give him all of u. Pray about ur future (including marriage n future kids), but don’t let that be the focus of ur life! (i.e. don’t make marriage an idol in ur life). I even started to pray for God to work on me and become that woman that a Godly man will see and be attracted to. You are praying for a God fearing man, are you even God fearing?. As in it is not a difficult principle…In your singlesness work on things like learning how to take care of a home, hygiene, are u a lazy person? Work on ur self. Do you struggle to show love, are you patient enough etc……
    3. -Love urself. If you love urself and have a solid self worth, you will not attach ur happiness with a man
    4. - Know why you want a husband. You wont believe why some ladies want a man.

    5. Apart from the fact that they were not God's plan for you, learn from your past relationship and work on ur short comings.

    Let me tell you the truth when you trust God he never disappoints and you will get the best of the best and at the best time. May not be what you want but it will surely be what is best for you. I will stop here for now…. Once again thanks Funke and Kemi. God bless you

    1. Thank you so much Ruth. Amen. I never knew that you had two verses that shaped your life. While I can say that I am ready for marriage, I still continue to work on the inward beauty as I have realised that outward beauty fades away quickly.

      I love your No 2,3,4 and 5 points are on point.
      In terms of No 1 point-In the society that we live in, it seems that, when a lady has finished university, the next conversation is..God, provide her with a husband. Yet, the lady might still be working on herself.

      It is to be noted that, nobody can be full ready for marriage. However, one must be ready to always work and develop oneself prior to marriage and during marriage, which requires another work.

      Ruth, the Aunty needs to be educated but some people will never understand.

      LADIES AND GUYS! Be sure that you are ready, don't let society and people dictate for you.

    2. Awww! 'You read it and you were so filled with joy'.

  4. My comments on facebook copied onto the blog:

    Most of us probably have family members who in their bid to point us in the right direction say things that may have counter-productive effect e.g. we're waiting for you oh, when are we coming to eat rice etc. The most important thing is to remember to choose your battles, know when to react and not, be sure who guides the "boat" of your life and have selective hearing during discussions revolving round marriage.

    I'm afraid these aunties, uncles etc aren't gonna stop advising even after you get married. Just had to drop that in there.

    1. Thank you. I agree with your view. I think Myss Lafunky should actually a Facebook page for our readers and followers as they would have missed the discussions on my Facebook.

      The scripture says in 1 Corinthians 7:34-35 states that singles are to:

      Live as free of complications as possible. When you’re unmarried, you’re free to concentrate on simply pleasing the Master. Marriage involves you in all the nuts and bolts of domestic life and in wanting to please your spouse, leading to so many more demands on your attention. The time and energy that married people spend on caring for and nurturing each other, the unmarried can spend in becoming whole and holy instruments of God. I’m trying to be helpful and make it as easy as possible for you, not make things harder. All I want is for you to be able to develop a way of life in which you can spend plenty of time together with the Master without a lot of distractions.