In 3 months I will be a married man. As the wedding day creeps up, it is starting to become more real. I am beginning to feel the financial burden that will be marriage. The thought of paying for housing, loans, food, gas, and many other things has been overwhelming at times. With so much financial responsibility, it makes you think “What if we just prolong the wedding? Wouldn’t that be easier?”
A couple months ago I read an article written by John Piper. A young couple in their early twenties asked him what they should do. In short, they wanted to get married but said they didn’t make enough money to do so. Piper gave them six things to think about, but one thing he said stood above the rest. He said that he and his wife “would rather starve together than be comfortable alone.” Wow!
This quote has changed my perspective on getting married young. Obviously there are times where one needs to prolong marriage. I understand every situation is different and what works for some may not work for others. In saying that, I will speak only from my situation.
Let me also preface this by saying I only cognitively understand marriage and lack experiential knowledge. I am not speaking from the perspective of someone who has had to practice what he preaches, but I am excited to begin practicing what I preach.
Piper’s quote makes me believe that marriage is more about self-denial and sanctification than it is self-fulfillment. I could wait to become married when finances become more abundant, but for what? When I look back on my life, I’ve come to realize that I grow most when I am put in uncomfortable, difficult situations.
In Paul Tripp’s book What Did You Expect, he writes “Because God loves you, he will willingly interrupt or compromise your momentary happiness in order to accomplish one more step in the process of rescue and transformation, which he is unshakably committed to.”
Getting married young is scary, but I take comfort in knowing that God will use my marriage to transform the lives of both my spouse and I. Why would I want to hold off on such a transformational journey?
In the end, I am not writing to convince anyone to get married young. Keep in step with the Spirit and do what is best for you in your specific situation. But as for me, getting married young isn’t a matter of waiting until we are financially comfortable. It is a matter of seeing how God uses the uncomfortableness of marriage to grow us as a couple, but also as individuals who love the Lord and his church.