One thing you and your fiance have to do before getting married is talk.
About everything. Even those pesky little things that may not be too comfortable to talk about.
That's why I am a big fan of pre-marital counseling. It's really the best thing you could do before walking down the aisle. Alex and I will begin our pre-marital counseling with Pastor Dave in February...and being the little psychologist that I am, I can't wait to get started!
So much so that a couple weeks ago as Alex and I were driving around I decided to bring up The Question. "If I were to ever cheat on you, would you divorce me?"
The funny thing is the topic came up again last week at our small group Bible study. The topic we were discussing was that there is nothing we can do to make God not love us. He will always love us and forgive us of our failures and shortcomings. I suppose we were talking about how that is not the easiest thing to do. How often do we shun people from our lives for hurting us in some way? And then came the issue of marital infidelity. A few girls expressed their concerns over this issue and did not know if they would want to continue in a marriage in which their husband had been unfaithful.
I realize that cheating has enormous repercussions in a family. It can completely change the way you view someone that you love and it can hurt you more deeply than you ever thought possible. But I also believe that all can be forgiven. One thing that I have seen in the Bible is that Christ is the "groom" and the church is His "bride." How often have we (His Church) been unfaithful to Him? How many times have we "cheated" on Him or sinned against Him? Yet, He still loves us...He still wants us to spend eternity in Heaven with Him...He will still forgive us again and again. This is the principle I want to apply in my own marriage.
No matter how hard we try not to, I am certain that Alex and I will hurt each other in some way. We will disappoint each other at some point in our life together, probably numerous times. But we have to make a commitment to stick by each other and forgive each other no matter what. And yes, that includes marital infidelity. Some people may think that cheating is something that is unforgivable, but what kind of testimony is that sending out to the world? No sin is unforgivable. If God can forgive, we should strive to forgive as well. It is difficult beyond words, because after all we are human, but it is possible. That's what unconditional love is all about.
And for those of you that believe that a marriage is never the same after infidelity has taken place...you're right, it's not the same, but that doesn't mean it has to be horrible. I know of one couple that I admire so much. They have been through some tough times in their marriage (including unfaithfulness) but they are still together and they are still striving to make their marriage honoring to God. I really look up to them and I can see that through their struggles they have emerged an even stronger couple than before. I really see that their marriage has gotten better over time. It is unfortunate that events took place the way they did, but they have made the best of it, and I admire them for that.
So what do you guys think?