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Basics of Marriage

Marriage is like a violin. After the music is over, you still have the strings. (Anonymus)

There are few decisions that are as important as marriage. You marry a person to to live together "till death us do part" sharing everything you have: your time, your money, your abilities, your body, everything. There is no part of your life you can save for yourself. You two become "one flesh". This gives people the greatest happiness they could ever experience and, unfortunately, in many other cases, the greatest pain and sufferings. Some say that marriage can be heaven on the earth or living hell. Many people gave up to think about marriage as an option. They prefer rather to suffer loneliness than to risk in marital life.

You've decided to take the course in order to be more ready for your marriage. It's a good decision. At least, while doing the tests you will put a solid foundation for your future relationships. Every married couple discuss a lot of issues. Some of them can't find solutions which satisfy both partners. For many discussion means conflict, fierce arguing, offencive words, calling names. Eventually, they stop talking to each other at all. This course is intended to help you to understand each other, to share with each other your real thoughts, to find a solution for even the most disputive questions. Have been learned the art of marital talk, you'll be able to live together happily in any life conditions "till death you do part".

1. What do you think about marriage? When you hear the word "marriage", what images emerge in your mind?

Partner:

Counselor:

2. Is the marriage a contract? Why yes, or why not?

3. How does you partner answer these questions? Your guess.

4. Read following quotes about marriage by famous people. Check what you like.

  To marry is to halve your rights and double your duties.

  Marriage is neither heaven nor hell, it is simply purgatory.

  Marriage: The state or condition of a community consisting of a master, a mistress and two slaves, making in all, two.

  A successful marriage is an edifice that must be rebuilt every day.

Read the Bible excerpt, Genesis 2:18-25

1. Who established marriage?

2. What is the purpose of marriage? ( Gen. 1:28, Gen. 2:18, Eph.5:22–32. )

3. What should a marriage be? (Gen. 2:18; Heb. 13:4 .)

4. How you can help your partner to make such a marriage?

5. What the expression “man will leave his father and mother” means?

6. What does the word “leave” mean for you?

7. “The two will become one flesh.” What does it mean for you?

8. How can your future spouse help you to "become one flesh" with him or her?

9. What Bible verses are the most important for your marriage? Why?

10. Your marriage is a union between you and your partner. But if you are Christians with the Holy Spirit in your hearts, then Jesus is the invisible witness and participant in the relationship. How does the presence of Christ impact on your relationships in marriage.

11. Some people say that there would be heaven on the earth if men followed to the Ten Commandments Exodus 20:2-17 . Do you think so? Can you apply the commandments to your marriage? What commandments? How to apply?

Why to marry?

What would you like to find in a marriage, what you cannot have without it? Give the reasons which prompt you to marry your partner.

Now, give your partner's reasons to marry you.

Compare your answers with the following list of different reasons compiled by some professional counselors.

Reasons
1. You don't like your parents.
2. Your low self-esteem. You hope that the marriage will make you more important person.
3. You see that your partner needs a leader and tutor, so you decided to be one.
4. Fear of loneliness.
5. The fear of independence. If you live alone, you have to deal with all your problems by yourself only.
6. You broke up just recently. So you started new relations to sooth the pain.
7. You are afraid of what might happen with your partner if you break up with him or her.
8. You want to leave the home where you're unhappy.
9. You (or your girlfriend) is pregnant.
10. You have had sex with your partner.

Please notice that this is the list of unhealthy reasons for marriage! If you can find at least one of these reasons in your list or in your heart desires, then you should discuss them with your counselor.

List those qualities of your character that will help you to succeed in your marriage.

Gal. 5:22-23 describes the fruit of Spirit in terms of a character's qualities. Make a note for every one of them. How you can manifest them in your marriage?

What qualities of your spirit have you been practiced? What qualities do you need to reach or develop?

What qualities have you noticed in your partner?

Descibe the situations where your partner revealed these qualities. How?


Counselor's final notes

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