Thursday, 9 February 2012
Jesus isn't in our marriage
An article entitled "Jesus is ruining my love life" made me smile, mostly because a lot of the writers situation is not so different to our own.
Here's how Jesus is in my life but isn't in our marriage.
When we met we didn't discuss faith or God or church, it just never really came up. We were friends for the best part of a year but we never talked about it. When our friends convinced us to give a relationship a try we never thought to discuss it either.
It wasn't until we went on our first weekend away together, to York, that we had the first conversation about God. It was obvious to me that we'd want to go to York Minster, I hadn't been since a child and I longed to see it again. We went inside and it quickly became clear that we viewed this Holy space very differently. I wanted to sit and pray and contemplate and be with God. Mike wanted to see the sights and read the information.
I remember realising then that we had never talked about God and religion and faith. I started the conversation and it was a challenge. We realised that we were poles about in our beliefs; that I loved and trusted and knew God, whilst Mike denied God entirely and wasn't interested in trying to find Him.
Over the years that followed we would occassionally talk God. Each time was hard for me, I loved Mike so much and found it hard to accept that he wouldn't want to get to know the God I loved so much.
There were arguments, there were discussions, there were tears and there was no change.
I believe in God, Mike does not.
It was hard to deal with, hard to think about and harder to work through. But eventually I accepted the fact that I could love Mike and love God; and that Mike did not have to also love God.
And the amazing thing is that when I came to that acceptance, suddenly I knew it didn't matter. I knew that Mike loved me with my faith and that I loved Mike without any faith. I knew that God loved us both and loved the fact that we were together despite our differences. And when I let go of all the worry, I was able to just relax in it all and Mike was able to support me in my faith.
We are an odd couple; an especially odd couple when you think about Mike's agnosticism and my calling to Ministry in the Church. But we work as we are, we know love and know acceptance and know difference and live it every day.
Jesus isn't in our marriage, but he is in our lives together.