There’s a certain couple I know who were married just over a year ago. They moved out here to Colorado for the same reason we did–to start a Christian school. Pete and I were simply teachers, but these two young people were a major part of formulating the ideas for the school, the framework, and they were part of the administration.
Once everything started to unravel–as a result of deceit, secrecy, and unrepentant sin on the part of the other two administrators–Pete and I were clearly led to leave the school at the end of the first semester. This young couple, however, felt led to stay.
I cannot imagine the pressure and stress that they had to endure to stay in the midst of this incredible situation. There were false accusations of slander and unforgiveness, horrible twists on the words “grace” and “love,” and it all centered on a marriage that was systematically taken apart and destroyed.
How would you like to deal with all of that during your first year of marriage?
The good news is that the two administrators who were at the root of all of the problems have been forced to resign, and this young couple has taken the helm. They have universal support from the teachers, parents, and the national organization that oversees the school.
The one thing that I keep hearing, from parents and teachers, is that people are worried about this young couple. There is concern that they had too much pressure and pain in their first year of marriage.
I agree–to a point. They were in the center of a horrible storm. It would have been nice if they’d had a purely happy, relatively uneventful first year.
For the most part, though, I look at it another way. I am in no way pleased about the storm and the pressure and the pain. In fact, I’m still reeling myself. But I believe that the Lord, as He is wont to do, has used this ordeal to strengthen this couple, individually and in their marriage.
They have seen how a marriage can disintegrate–they had front row seats. They have seen how sin can erode relationships, how deceit begets more and more deceit. They cannot cling to the illusions that so many newlyweds cling to, that as long as they’ve chosen the “right” person, things will just merrily roll along. They know, in a deep and personal sense, that they must work at their marriage every single day. That they cannot afford to let bitterness fester. That they cannot shut other people out when they are struggling, but must let others into their struggles for support, accountability, and encouragement.
Yes, they have been under nearly unbearable pressure. But thanks to the hand of our gracious God, rather than being crushed by that pressure, this couple’s marriage and their character have crystallized into something amazingly beautiful and amazingly strong.