As we drove away from the place of the interview, I told Irewamiri that the singular most essential ingredient for a great marriage is training.
A lot of people marry because they are in love but they end up managing crisis because they are not trained.
It is a burden that we study in school for years to become a doctor, we keep studying to remain a good doctor; we spend money to become lawyers and we invest in knowledge to remain sharp and on point but unfortunately we think marriage can be governed by the magic of love alone.
You did not become a doctor simply because you love medicine. You submitted to training also.
Pastors are not wicked when they ask to know who you intend to marry and request that you carry them along. From experience, they can smell a rat!
To become a great doctor, you work with seniors in the profession- you understudy them. But we think that we are independent once we get married- we go on without mentors and teachers.
Friends, there had been times in our marital journey that the counsel of a mentor has saved us from crisis. It was a father and teacher that told me, “No matter the conflict, keep the emotional warmth”.
So we were disagreeing that day but I kept saying to my wife all through that, “I love you”, I keep hugging even when she is cold. My lighted coal eventually lighted hers.
We talked issues over. We keep getting better.
Marriage is not a child’s play. Mentors train us about sex, finance, communication, conflict management and others.
(Even if you are a pastor, you do not know it all)
There was an evening we were both overwhelmed with the burdens of the moment. Her questions pressured me. I could not answer them. We talked, apologized, cried and resolved.
Guess what, the next day we were already with our mentors. We spent the night. We asked questions. We learnt. We got better.
Is your man trained?
Is your woman trained?
Who are your marital mentors?
Who can you open up to without being judged but yet drive home the truth?
Where can you both be vulnerable and forget about ego?
Marriage works when both parties are trained and willing to keep learning.
My wife said once, “I troubled my husband for the first year of our marriage but everything changed when I started getting mentored”.
Are you trained?