The big day has come. You are prepared. You know you are marrying the man God has for you. The two of you have studied and worked through your differences. You’ve discussed your plans. You are ready!
Some people use vows prepared by the preacher leading the ceremony. Other’s write customized vows that are more personal. There really isn’t a problem with either of these methods as long as you really mean what you are saying and are not just saying words.
Whichever vows you choose to use, you should be promising to love, honor, and cherish your spouse for better or worse, whether they are rich or poor, while they are healthy and when they are sick. You are promising that no matter what happens you are going to stay together until death. Nothing will part you.
You will put rings on each other’s finger as a reminder of these promises.
What is it you are promising anyway? These are not to be just words.
1. You are promising to love them. Love is not just a feeling. It is something you do for someone else. You will do what is best for that person even if they do not realize that is what they need.
2. You will honor them. Honor means respect. You will not look down on your spouse. You take what they say under consideration and speak well of them around other people.
3. Cherish them. Be there for them. Help them and encourage them. Hold them close.
Think of your favorite possession. How do you treat that item? Do you throw it around and mistreat it? No. You cherish it, treat it with great care and attention. You don’t want to lose it. So you keep it in a special place. When you look upon it you do so with care and joy. You will not let any harm come to it. It is your special treasure.
That is how you should treat your spouse. They are your beloved. You want only what is best for them. You treat them with compassion and care. Don’t break them by saying ugly or mean things to them. Their feelings are valuable. Take care of them. Hold them close and treat them better than you do yourself. If anyone else tried to hurt your beloved whether it is family, friend, or foe, you will not let them. You will defend your beloved with your words and actions.
4. For better or worse. You will do what is best for your spouse whether it is a good time or not. If it is what is best for you or if it seems like the worse time to do what is right. You are still going to be committed to your spouse.
5. For richer or poorer. Hard times will hit. If you lose your job for whatever reason, the two of you will stay together. The bills come in faster than the money is coming in. You will work together to solve the problem. Perhaps you will even have to move into a smaller house. Circumstances will not matter because you are committed to doing what is best for this person no matter what. Even if you have to give up some of the things you love because you cannot afford them at the time. You will do so knowing that your love and commitment to your spouse is above any possession or financial gain you could have.
6. In sickness and in health: If a major illness hits your beloved, you will not leave them stranded and wounded. You will still be there for them. Even if they were to be physically or mentally affected for life. You are still motivated by love, only doing what is best for them. No matter what society says or thinks, you would want your spouse to stand by you if your health had failed. This is the time to do unto your spouse what you would have them do unto you in the same situation.
7. ‘Til death do you part. You will stay true to your beloved. Nothing else will separate you. Divorce is not an option. Should the health of the person cause mental issues that make them abusive, you may have to get them medical help and you may have to keep yourself safe from physical harm. However that does not mean you should leave them. They are still your spouse. Your cherished treasure. If a part of your treasured possession is broken you will do whatever it is in your power to help fix the broken shards that are trying to hurt you.
These things should be on your mind when you commit your life to love, honor, and cherish your spouse. Taking care of this treasure God has given you is worth all the time and effort you need to work on it. If you love your spouse you will be their for them.
Do you love, honor, and cherish your spouse? Please share your experience with me in the comments.
This is Day 14 of 31 Days Building Commitment. Tomorrow I will be discussing how to have a happy marriage after the honeymoon phase is over.