These were some pointers/lessons that were touched upon and/or shared (by other participants) during the marriage preparation course but it is only recently that I have come to realise how they may affect me.
1. The couple should ideally set up a home of their own (if finances permit)
Not that there’s anything wrong with our parents’ homes/house rules but I think having a home of your own will help strengthen a couple’s relationship as they start to form their own value system for the family and institute their own house rules.
2. The wife/husband should talk to their respective parents
Having loved and tolerated our idiosyncrasies since we were kids, our parents are definitely more accommodating and receptive when we raise issues with them – versus having our spouse do the talking.
3. The husband must stand up for his wife
Although it is a horrible position to be caught between mother and wife, a husband must be fair and willing to speak up for his wife if the need arises.
4. The wife must not bring her grievances back to her parents’ home
I’m not saying that the wife should suffer in silence but it really would not help matters as the wife’s family will definitely take her side. Why cause more misunderstanding/division?
5. The husband should be tolerant of the wife’s mood swings
(This is a personal observation). Women, being more affected by their hormones, tend to have quicker mood swings (aka PMS or worse – menopause). Husbands should not take this personally.
6. There is a time for everything
As wise man Solomon noted, there is a time for everything. The wife should not be anxious to force the issue if the husband is not ready to talk about it.
7. God is in control
The most important lesson (in my opinion) – we cannot add an hour to our lives by worrying. I have recently started to feel the stress of getting married – will I find an evening gown that I like, will the gowns be ready in time, will the photoshoot turn out ok, will the photos get developed in time, will we be able to meet the minimum 30 tables required by Hyatt, will the logistics of travelling from Singapore to JB be ok, will the immigration and customs be jammed, will we bust our finances… the list goes on.
A verse (2 verses actually) that has popped up in my head quite often these days is – 1 Peter 5:6-7, "Humble yourselves, therefore, under God’s mighty hand, that He may lift you up in due time. Cast all your anxiety on Him because He cares for you".
What’s there to worry really. God has given me the biggest comfort in the fact that Iceman is with me in Christ.
Everything will work out.