Tough Love

Working with High School and College students, relationships (serious or not) are often a topic of conversation. I have seen great relationships that have flourished, but I have also seen relationships fall apart. It hurts me every time a pair of students break up, because it leaves the ones in the relationship thinking that there is something fundamentally wrong with them. In talking with these students, they often look to young married couples and say “they are so perfect, if only we could have been like them.” This is a dangerous assumption to make because it idolizes marriage as a cure to relationship struggles.

“If only we could be as cute as they are,” or “why can’t we have a relationship like theirs?” These are very dangerous ideas because it establishes an unrealistic expectation for marriage. It sets up the assumption that marriage will cure all possible struggles. It doesn’t solve your struggles, it amplifies them. Marriage doesn’t solve underlying issues of trust, communication or pride. If you go into marriage expecting everything to be wonderful and easy, you are going to be very disappointed.

The truth is, marriage is hard. Read More »


Lately, I’ve been feeling rather unsettled – or perhaps anxious is a better word for it. It’s like I haven’t been able to breathe deeply. In fact, there are moments when I catch myself unknowingly holding my breath, like I’ve forgotten how to breathe, just for a moment. It’s as if I’m anticipating something, but uncertain of what it is or if it’s good or bad or both. All I know is that I can feel change coming, or perhaps it’s already happening, and it terrifies me. It’s like when you’re standing on a beach near the shore with your feet sunk in the sand, waiting for the next wave to come and crash around your ankles, but you see the wave coming from a distance and it seems to be growing, and for a split second you consider running away because this wave looks like it’s going to be a lot bigger than the last one. So here I am, caught in that split second, holding my breath, anticipating the next wave of change and uncertainty to come crashing over me.

Part of me just wants to run away and hide. But another part of me knows that I must stay.
Read More »