I am convinced that marriage is like buying a beautiful old house.
You tour the house and get an overview of its history and features. As you do so, you take in all of the beautiful finishes and features.
It’s everything you ever dreamed of! So you excitedly purchase the home.
One, five, fifteen or fifty years go by. And the rose-colored glasses come off.
You’ve had to fix the leaking roof. The windows were drafty, so they got replaced. Oh, and a new furnace has been installed. Heck, you’ve even had to shore up the foundation of the home!
It’s been a costly investment. There were so many other places you could have invested your money, time and energy if you hadn’t bought this house.
And yet …
You also created a beautiful garden that grows and thrives. The walls of the house have echoed with laughter — and tears that were shared. You’ve stumbled upon wonderful hidden nooks and crannies that only the dwellers of the house could find and enjoy.
Somewhere along the line, the house became a home.
In a strange way, the home seems all the more beautiful for the work and efforts you’ve invested into it. The home is your safe space, and it belongs to you alone.
That’s what marriage is like.
Because of our imperfections, sin and baggage, every marriage is like a beautiful old house in a various state of renovation. Initially, the relationship has a particular finish and foundation that appeals and delights.
But underneath the surface, we all have hidden — and sometimes not-so-hidden — issues that often only reveal themselves over time and close contact.
That doesn’t mean any of us are down for the count or that we’re not worth the time and investment. It just means that we’re all broken.
Every person. Every relationship. Every marriage.
There is no such thing as perfect on this side of heaven.
So if you’re waiting for that perfect relationship or that perfect friendship or that perfect marriage, it’s time to let it go.
No, you shouldn’t settle for unhealthy relationships. And yes, you should work toward growth always.
But I think we could all use a dose of realism when looking at the expectations we set on our friendships and our marriages.
Because even the best relationships have a high cost. Even the healthiest marriages take a lot of work.
Friend, don’t be deceived the Instagram and Facebook posts, the #blessed or the various “relationship goals” content that’s out there.
Every relationship is like an old house.
Thank God we know the Master Builder.