"What's hard, she said, is figuring out what you're willing to give up in order to do the things you  really care about" - Denise (Bittersweet by Shauna Niequist)

Last weekend, me and my Bryan talked about time and stress management to a group of young Principals in Makati.  In our workshop, one of the things we pointed out is to learn what to drop on a to-do-list or on a schedule.  Knowing and letting matters go is important to (1) Give way to the things that are more important (2)  To rest (3)  To go back to your priorities (4) To honor God with our time and body.  

As I was reading on this topic prior to teaching, I realized that this can also be applied in my marriage. To begin, let me mention that "dropping matters" is not negative.  A person should never think that saying "no" is bad.  In fact, when we say decline, this may give way to new or better things.  

So, what do exactly we give up on marriages?

1.  Our pride - On our first year of marriage, I never said the word "sorry" to Bryan.  It was always him first, and even if he admitted first, I would still never apologize.  He allowed that to happen because I was pregnant and was too emotional in our arguments.  However, when I gave gave birth and overcame post-partum, I do not have a choice anymore ;)  Saying the very first "I am sorry" was both difficult and liberating.  If felt so challenging to swallow my pride yet I felt so humbled that I finally had courage to admit my fault. 

2.  Our decisions - This is a struggle up until now.  I like making decisions on my own and asking Bryan about the biggest and tiniest choices make me cringe in some occasions.  For example, yesterday, we were in the department store and I have been eyeing on frames to use for our home.  I had to ask his permissions because he does not like drilling nor using adhesives on our walls.  I ended up looking for the perfect frames BUT not buying it!  Why? Because he told me we still fave unused frames so I must use those first and finalize on where to put them before buying new ones.  I so wanted to stomp my feet as we left the area but in my heart, I knew I needed to submit.  When we got home, I realized I never really needed those sale items.  We really have enough frames I can use.  Good thing I listened!

3.  Ourselves - Yes.  This.  His schedule first.  His want first.  His welfare first.  His part first.  His joy first.  Our husbands first.  Now, maybe you are saying, this is too much...My answer?  Yes and no.  Yes it is hard when we do it on our own strength.  However, God's mathematics is different from ours.  Meaning, when we do all this with Jesus, He will give us the joy, drive and passion.  Trust him.  He sustains! :)

If you are married or planning to get married, there will be things that you would give up for a healthier relationship. It is just like saving up to get a new phone.  Spending time at the gym to lose weight.  Giving away clothes to have space for new ones.  It is okay to let pride, our decisions and ourselves go.  Trust God that He will honor your heart when you make your husband and relationship first on the list.  Remember, just drop it.

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