Five years ago, I attended a wedding here in Hungary as a contented, single woman. I saw the value of a life in which marriage was given up "for the sake of the kingdom of heaven", in which--for me--my kids would be found in my classroom and my family would be of the eternal sort. I even made a joke about not coming to Hungary to get married.
I still do brazenly tell my students to seek God's best instead of automatically asssuming and seeking a married life, but now I can add a bit more grace and understanding for those who hope for marriage. Now, I'm married, myself.
Shocking, but true! Eric and I are into month five of married life and see already how God uses not only the single people but also the married ones to live bold lives of faith "for the sake of the kingdom of heaven". My heart of hidden selfcenteredness shows up more clearly in marriage; my pride rears its head as I live in such close fellowship. But bringing such sin into the light is a relief and a challenge. There will be eternal ramifications and rewards for this life as well as results in the meantime. I'm learning to love my classroom kids in wiser and deeper ways, and now I get to love my husband, too.
God is using marriage to change my heart.
This growth is a marvelous gift to me as I see more clearly that things "for the sake of the kingdom" are all for God's glory and also my good. I get to benefit from God's goodness and his kingdom work.
These thoughts are still in formation as this life stage is quite new and frenzied, but I wanted to let you know that I am loving being "man and wife".