I saw a depiction of first century (B.C.) Romans carrying their queen’s living quarters. They had built a room with a bed (complete with a roof) and then put poles under it. Thirty or so men would lift up the poles and walk. It made me think: how heavy would that thing get in four or five hours?
Time makes every chore more difficult.
A lot of time makes it a lot more difficult.
That’s the way you need to look at deciding who to marry. If you sacrifice on something you really want it’s not a one-time decision, it’s a lifelong concession. Let’s say it was important for you to have a spouse who shared your passion for fitness but you “fell in love” with someone who works out, at best, two times a week just so they can say they do. You’re not making a one-time sacrifice. You’re going to have to carry that sacrifice for perhaps seventy years.
I want you to think of it as that long—because if you get married and don’t get divorced, seventy years isn’t out of the question.
If you marry an angry man, you will live with anger not just on your wedding day when you choose him but for the next seventy years. If you marry a selfish woman, you better get used to serving one-sidedly because you’ll have to for the next seven decades.
Are you willing to make such a concession for that long? That’s what you have to ask yourself.
Making concessions about who you marry isn’t a one-time sacrifice—it’s a lifelong sacrifice. It’s not choosing a single difficult workout; it’s choosing a difficult lifestyle.
The flipside is also true: if you marry someone with a good sense of humor, you’ll be blessed for decades. If you choose someone who always chooses joy, you’ll be uplifted for the rest of your life. If you marry someone schooled in prayer, you will never, for the rest of your life, live a day without spiritual covering (sounds pretty nice, doesn’t it?).
I bet I could lift up Cleopatra’s room with the other men and walk for at least half an hour. But could I carry it for three hours? Three weeks? The rest of my life?
That, my single friends, is the true choice you’re making.
The art of making a wise marital choice is recognizing that this choice is unlike just about every other choice you’ll ever make. As I say in The Sacred Search, a wise marital choice is like a gift that keeps on giving. A foolish or hastily chosen marital choice is like a bad investment that keeps demanding your payment that may never be fully paid off.
Choose wisely, and well. You’ll be carrying that marriage for a long time.