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INTRODUCTION- WHAT IS MARRIAGE

Marriage is the union of a man and a woman as husband and wife according to the

standard set out by God. Marriage is a divine institution authorized and established by

God in the Garden of Eden. The outcome of marriages is therefore creation of a family

unit or the family circle. Apart from companionship, the prime aim of marriage as

indicated in the Bible was the reproducing of the members of the human family, to bring

into existence more creatures of the human kind and thereby subduing the land, (Read

Gen 1:27, 28). God therefore was the first to perform the first ever wedding since he is

the originator of everything. He therefore set the standards as in the first ever marriage

ceremony He conducted. Gen 2:22-24.

GOD’S STANDARDS FOR MARRIAGE

In Gen. 2:24 we found out that …“that is why a man leaves his father and mother and is

united with his wife, and they become one’. Marriage as ordained by God is a sacred

institution that needs a careful consideration before entering. When one enters in to it,

there must be no way out of it. It is a lifetime commitment and dedication to one

another .You must forever cling to one another and always work out how you can sustain

the love that you have for each other.

When God created man, He indeed saw the importance of him having a helpmate. No

wonder God Himself is leaving with assistants like the angels who always carry His

orders. In view of this, He sees no reason why man, whom He created in His own image

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and breathe His life in him should be single and always feel lonely. Also His objectives

of reproduction or recreation for the land to be subdued cannot be fulfilled.

Mind you, because God created woman as an assistant to man does not mean a slave to

the man, but someone who could help or assist him to achieve the purpose for which God

has joined the two of them together.

As He created man, He also created a woman suitable for him with whom he must live

forever.

In these present times, several marriages are breaking down and divorce rate is very high.

I believe no single day passes out without couples divorcing. It was reported in the World

Almanac & Books of Facts that, in the first six months of 1976, 987,000 couples were

married and 538,000 divorced in the United States. This revelation is very alarming and

this current generation must consider marriage very important and as a ministry ordained

or instituted by God.

We as human beings need to be extra careful about the way we go about marriage issues.

Unpreparedness, non-commitment, non dedication, immaturity and a lot more of factors

that causes these problems of divorce needs to be revealed to this generation because the

youth of today are volatile and vulnerable. They do things without serious considerations.

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Marriage institution is not like our educational Institutions where, when you realized that

the performance of both teachers and students are poor, you can withdraw yourself. Or

better still is not a fruit that you will wish to test and see if it is sweet before you go in for

it.

Since the very first marriage established by God on the earth was not dissolved by any

human being, apart from the forces of death, NO MAN should also enter into the

marriage institution and think of opting out. As you have opted for it, you must work

towards its success. The failure of your marriage even though may be blamed on the

works of evil spirits, can also arise due to faults from any of the couples. Most divorce

cases are due to misunderstanding. These misunderstandings might be due to the use of

certain household items and avoiding each other in your daily activities.

Indeed, it is the misunderstanding that usually causes the collapse of most marriages. You

need to understand your partner in everything and make sure you are patient with him or

her. The only drug to ensure the success of a marriage is the dependence on God and

Tolerance.

There are a lot of factors which need to be properly understood in order to help the youth

sustain the initial love that units them or the love that they have for their partners whilst

they were courting. These factors are very important and need to be judiciously analysed

before entering into this sensitive and sacred institution.

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Causes of most broken marriages can be traced from the time partners became friends,

through their courtship periods and finally to the period of their marriage life. Several

factors contribute to the break or quarrel in the house and may be classified as minor and

major problems. It is usually the compounding of these minor problems that gives birth to

a major problems hence resulting in to divorce. This is the reason why minor problems

must be solved immediately they occur so that it would not result in to a pile of minor

problems or any major problem leading to divorce.

It is indisputable facts that, due to moral decadence and harsh economic situations most

youth have problems concerning marriages. Most of them have faint or no knowledge at

all about marriage life but they want to get into it. Improper sex education, no

counselling, emotional immaturity, social immaturity, economic immaturity etc are some

of the factors that the youth need to consider very well before they jump into marriage.

Pressure from friends and family members usually put the youth in danger and they start

performing what I called “very explosive experiments” which resultant effect affects not

only those involved and their family but also the community and the nation as a whole.

We must all be concerned about these problems or else, all of us will suffer in the final

analysis. They may not suffer alone, their various families may be involved, the whole

community may suffer and for that matter, the whole nation may suffer. As a result, steps

need to be taken to educate especially the youth to be well informed so as to avoid certain

mistakes they usually commit.

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In this booklet, essential factors to be considered before proposing to a partner or

accepting proposal from a partner are treated; problems to be faced as a result of wrong

choices are also dealt with. In addition, how to detect dangers ahead whilst in courtship

are also well explained. The book also talked about the different styles or kinds of love,

which may unite you together. It also considers the temperamental difference. This is a

book I believe every youth need to have so that they may be a bit informed because;

marriage and its problems are very broad that one person cannot deal with every aspect of

it in a single book. Most marriage problems are peculiar and hence the solutions are also

peculiar; for that matter nobody can copy someone’s solution to a similar problem to

solve his. However you can learn from their mode of solution and adapt your situation to

suit their situation.

Remember that “Happiness in marriage frequently depends on WHEN, WHY, and HOW

the partners married.

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CHAPTER ONE-WHAT TO DO BEFORE YOU PROPOSE OR ACCEPT

PROPOSAL

In the olden days, the families involved always contract marriages for the prospective

couples. Parents are so much involved in the selection of the Prospective wife for a young

man who has reached a stage where he is expected to marry. The parents of the young

man consider several factors before selecting a particular young lady for their son.

Factors normally considered include the personality of the girl; her reputation and that of

her family; hereditary diseases that may run through the family for example sickle cell

traces, mental health problems, etc; and in the case of Christians, her spirituality. When

the parents of the young man are satisfied with their personal investigations about the

lady, they formally approach the parents of the lady to ask for their daughter’s hands for

their son. This is in conformity with the Bible. Read Genesis Chapter 24.

Since culture is said to be dynamic, this practice gradually is fading out. However, some

parents still insist and do select partners for their children. In most cases, these marriages

last no matter the problems the couples are facing probably because they do not want to

disrespect their parents.

In modern days, most marriages are no longer first initiated by the families. The young

man is expected to look for a suitable young lady who he feels he wants to marry and

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inform the parents who will in turn go and perform the marriage rites on behalf of the

young man.

Sometime past, and even presently, when the young man made the choice, the parents

will thereafter conduct their own personal investigations about the lady and her family

before accepting the choice of their son.

Presently, several factors have caused the unsuitability of this system .The young man

now does everything; he proposes to the young lady and moves with her for sometime

before even informing the parents. During this period, a lot of things happen. When they

are not committed Christians, they may even engage in pre-marital sexual activities.

Sometimes, the lady may even become pregnant before parents will be aware of their

children’s involvement in a relationship. As a result, parents are forced by circumstances,

to accept the situation even if they don’t like it. Because your parents dislike your

partner, they may put every pressure on you to even divorce your partner immediately the

child is delivered. In some cases, some parents may even go ahead and abort the baby for

the lady. This indeed causes a lot of troubles and the young couples may become

frustrated. No wonder these days, cases of High blood pressure and abortions are on the

increase. Broken hearts have been coming too much and unbearable for a lot of people.

If these are the situations in which the youth are now finding themselves what then,

should they do to have a healthy marriage and avoid going through all these mental and

psychological tortures.

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There are a lot of factors they need to consider first even before proposing to the partner

of their choice.

In the first place, you need not be in hurry to propose or accept proposal because any

hasty decision may lead you into trouble. You will never make a head way in life, so trust

in God so that you may not roam from one partner to another and have multiple broken

hearts.

Few of these factors are discussed below and you are expected to think about them

seriously and carefully.

Remember, this world is worth living depending on the choice you made. The world is

full of choices and if you make the right choices, you will live to enjoy forever. The best

way to make choice is to depend on your creator, because He created you and always

want to give you the best. If you neglect Him in your choices, you will definitely mess up

your life. Seek His guidance and adjust your guideline to suit your creators guideline and

you will be the happiest person. Never depend on your own understanding. Let God be

the first in your life everything will be alright. Read the following verses and see what

benefits you will get from seeking understanding and wisdom from God before making

your Choice. Proverb 8:14, 15:14, 15:32, 17:18, 18:2, 19:8, 24:3.

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In making your selection of partner, there are different things you need also to consider.

Remember being in love is not a gambling. You need to critically assess situations and be

sure you will be able to live with your partner for life.

In making your choices do well to critically analyse the following factors before you

finally settle on your partner. Above all rely on your creator.

FACTORS TO BE CONSIDERED BEFORE PROPOSING OR ACCEPTING

MARRIAGE

A. ATTRACTION.

Every young man or woman who wants to start a relationship, in my opinion considers

attraction as the initiator of the love flame. You will definitely be attracted to the person

due to certain features you have seen on the person. Indeed the attraction is the first and

the foremost factor that needs to be considered. Attraction, in this sense can be divided

into two main categories namely Physical and Behavioural (or Character)

PHYSICAL ATTRACTION

In most marriages, physical attraction is mostly the initiator of any love relationship. The

beauty, the eye, the complexion, the facial appearance, etc attracts a lot of people and

forces them to propose or accept proposals. Indeed, everybody has his or her own taste

and therefore tries to look at these physical features that appeal most to him or her. Some

people prefer slim partners; some prefer fat partners, etc.

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Indeed, you need to consider these features or characteristics but you must not forget the

fact that human beings are growing everyday and are undergoing a lot of change. Anyone

who disagrees with this fact may be living in his own world where life will be considered

as stagnant. So far as you are a living being, you are bound to experience certain changes

in life. If you do not experience growth in life then you might not even be thinking of

marriage.

Suppose your taste for a future wife is a slim lady. You must know that she may not

remain slim forever. Conditions will change and she can also grow fat after some few

years of marriage, so be warned that, looking at certain features are very deceptive. If it is

the breast that attracts you because it stands firm, a time may come that it would become

loose. Any other physical attraction may disappear as time goes on so do not be deceived

that that structure will remain permanent with your spouse.

Be very careful because those features you were looking for can put you into bigger

troubles. You may have someone with all the physical features you want but there is

something more crucial than the physical features that you need to seek. There is a saying

that “All that glitters is not gold”. There are a lot of beautiful and handsome people, but

within them, they are more than pythons. So, beware of the physical attractions, they

are always deceptive. Remember, the beautiful and the handsome ones are being chased

by other people. You are not the only one looking at them. You will end up breaking your

heart when you concentrate so much on the physical appearance.

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What you need to consider most is the character after you are satisfied with the physical

appearance.

BEHAVIOURAL (CHARACTER) ATTRACTION

As said already, somebody may be handsome or beautiful but you might not be aware of

what he or she is made up of. What is proper and in place for you to do is to consider

critically the behaviours put up by the person. In the olden days, parents usually consider

the character of a lady or a young man before accepting or approaching the family to

contract the marriage. Since these days the prospective partners do everything before

approaching their parents, you must be careful or else your parents might reject your

selection. More so the inter tribal marriage these days has made it impossible for parents

to do their home works effectively before agreeing to accept or ask for someone’s hands

in marriage for their daughters or sons.

This particular aspect (thus the behavioural attraction) is very important and you need to

be very careful and trustful whiles considering the behaviour of someone. There are some

people who behave like chameleon. Where they are at a particular time determines how

they will behave. There are some people that behave perfectly when they are in the

church or are with their pastors or elders of their church. In the house or market or work

place, they are like lions. So be very careful and find out how your prospective partner

behaves at different points in time.

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You have to device means of ascertaining some of the behaviours exhibited by your

prospective partner. Whilst you were just friends, surprise visits to the house would

reveal to you, whether he or she is hot tempered, chases other men or women, fights with

parents, stays in the house to perform the household chores, etc.

There is a saying that to see the beauty of a woman wake up early morning and see her.

This will reveal a lot of things to you. The visit will reveal to you whether she performs

her house chores well or only wakes up and just bath to go out. It also reveals how she

will be without artificial make ups.

Your movement with him or her can also reveal a lot of characters to you. As you

interrogate him or her, visit places together and converse; you can detect some of the

flaws in him or her. At this point, you can be able to assess whether you can live with

your partner with all those qualities exhibited. Be cautioned that it is important you set

your priorities well and avoid staying in obscure places alone and that you do not become

tempted to do anything foolish all in the name of I am trying to study him or her.

Remember, you cannot get all the qualities you may need. In the actual sense, it is very

difficult detecting these things because we are always more emotional than facing

realities, when it comes to love issues, so be warned and be convinced in your heart that

you can live with such negative attitudes you have observed about your prospective

partner. You are advised to be interested in all aspects of your partner’s behaviours. You

also have to make up your mind that, that negative or bad character you observed about

your partner cannot be easily changed. You rather have to adapt your life style to suit that

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behaviour in order to avoid petty quarrelling, which can even lead to divorce. Remember

that marriages can last forever if you have been able to understand the behaviours

exhibited by your partner and you adapt your life style to suit his or hers. It is only

understanding of each other’s behaviour and adjustments that can sustain the marriage.

Finally, be convinced that you can live with all the qualities exhibited by your partner

before you propose to her or accept him. This is the reason why it is advisable to be

friend the person for sometime before proposing or accepting him or her. This is what

most people neglect to do and they are faced with a lot of problems in their marriages.

B. COMMON INTEREST AND ASPIRATIONS.

Naturally, when two people have something in common, it becomes very easy for them to

become friends. This is because; there is a common purpose, interest, and objectives. In

view of their common interest, their friendship would last because they usually think

along the same line. On the other hand, when interests are divergent one-person feels he

or she is being opposed and to compromise becomes a problem and there may be quarrels

every time. In fact when interests are divergent, peace, tranquillity and harmony may be

missing in your lives. One person may feel cheated and in his or her reaction, conflicts

may arise.

Assuming a partner likes going out to discos, and other social functions whilst the other

partner dislikes such activities and prefers watching Television or videos in the house to

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going out for socialization. The former may feel bored and becomes aggrieved when the

latter refuses to go out with him or her. This may even force the former to go out alone

and in the process start having extra – marital affairs and in effect cause their marriage to

end on the rock. Another example may be a situation where one partner is a staunch

Christian whilst the other is neither a Christian nor Muslim. Whilst the Christian is

involved in church activities, and started neglecting the partner, the partner may not

understand his or her Christian friend and ‘fireworks’ will start in the house causing the

marriage to break. It is therefore advisable to find some one with whom you have the

same religious background.

C. LEVEL OF EDUCATION

Education plays a very important role in the life of partners. This is the reason why it is

not advisable to rush in to marriage or engage in pre-marital affairs. Some people engage

themselves in pre-marital sexual affairs without knowing much about the person they are

involved with. Some are even involved in relationships where the partner is uneducated

but very handsome or beautiful and has a lot of money. Due to these attractions, they are

forced to have affairs with these illiterates or semi-literate people forgetting their own

educational status. As they climb higher in their educational ladder and are employed as

Managers, Marketing Directors, Chief Executives, Presidents, Board members of

companies etc, it becomes clear that when meetings, dinners, etc. are organized, they

cannot go with their wives or husbands as conditions there cannot be favourable and

friendly at these meetings and dinners. As a result of the above scenario, you need to

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marry according to your educational status. If you don’t do that, you may be inviting

more troubles into your marriage. Suspicions may enter into your marriage, jealousy may

enter and a lot of problems may arise. Your wife or husband cannot continue tolerating

you whilst you attend these meetings and dinners alone or with girlfriends or boyfriends.

Quarrels may start in the house because he or she is now aware you are treating him or

her as a doormat or uneducated fellow and cannot be taken out. When both of you are

educated, it helps to reduce petty quarrels that may happen. You can both read self–help

books on marriage, emotions and on socialization to enable you patch up your

differences. As far as your partner can communicate well and would not cause any

embarrassment to you when you are invited to a social gathering, you can marry him or

her. It is manners at these gatherings that matter. So far as he or she can understand the

things said at the meeting or the party, you have no problems with that. You must

therefore consider the level of education of your partner but don’t be too much rigid in

doing that. More so, you can also assist him or her to learn and speak provided your

partner is ready to accept his or her weaknesses and willing to change since you cannot

force him or her.

D.AGE DIFFERENCES

A lot of people consider age differences as unimportant since there is love. To enjoy a

stabilized relationship, age is a serious factor that needs to be considered. Society always

believes that woman must be a bit younger than the man.

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In marriage, the man must have a balanced ego. When the woman is older than the man

he cannot be able to control the house as the head of the house especially when the

woman is not very submissive. Also pompous women may try to control the man and

would not listen to him. No man wants to be over-ridden by his wife.

What is important is that there must be a balanced ego to foster unity and stability in the

house. Naturally people of equal age, whether of the same sex or different sexes usually

have frank, intimate and closer talk than when one person (especially the woman) is

older. There is always no intimidation where so ever. So, when partners are of the same

age or when the woman is younger than the man, say up to five years, their self-esteem is

safeguarded in all respects. My suggestion to prospective husbands and wives is that the

age difference should not be too much say between ten to twenty years. This can cause a

lot of problems, since the things that the younger one may prefer to do will be nuisance to

the older person. Finally, infidelity will arise as the older person becomes weak. I will

therefore suggest up to five years age difference for prospective partners however, this

depends on you.

E. RACIAL DIFFERENCES.

This is also another sensitive factor, which causes a lot of frustrations to the prospective

spouses. It is not because one particular race is better than the other. The problem at stake

here is that, there are some old perceptions about certain tribes. Also, the existence of

certain believes and superstition about a particular race causes problems of inter-racial

marriage. Well, you need to be judicious in marrying from a different tribe or race. There

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are some problems associated with inter –tribal or racial marriage which needs to be well

considered before contracting the marriage.

There are problems such as observation of certain customs, language barrier etc which

needs to be well considered because marriage is a union between two families (i.e. in

African perspective).

In view of these problems some people prefer marrying within their races to marrying

from outside their races. There is also this problem of the children from this marriage

being torn between the observations of two different cultural practices. They sometimes

become imbalance. The two parents may insist on the observation of certain rites and

ceremonies peculiar to their custom and if the couples don’t consider these instructions

well, they can even divorce due to this. For instance, a father who will like her daughter

to be circumcised because it is their custom will take a strong stand against the mother

who is from another tribe who will not agree to this. However, in situations where one

parent is dominant over the other the child may be attracted to that parent’s side of

cultural practices.

Indeed marriage in the African perspective is a union between two families and it must

not bring quarrel or enmity. Remember that it is the two of you that would live together

for life. Your parents may die and live you alone. You cannot see a partner with super

characters and brush him or her off just because of racial differences. You must consider

the future of your children and your future happiness also or else you may take a

decision, which in the long–run will make you miserable. I consider decision to marry

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someone to be personal since you will be living with the person for life. When you marry

someone from your tribe with tainted character you may suffer at the end. You may even

be advised by parents or family members not to divorce that person with the tainted

character just because he is from your tribe and wealthy and your life would become

miserable.

Be very careful in cases of racial differences. You may be living with the person for life

and after careful study of the person’s attitude or character you can convince your parents

and family members what you have seen in the person that makes you to marry him.

Sometimes, the misfortunes that parents usually complain about that are found in some

tribes may just be superstitions.

F. HEALTH STATUS.

Health status issue is another thorny one, which needs thorough investigation. No one

would be ready to live with a sickler forever. Your duty before you marry is to

investigate this issue carefully to avoid making a serious mistake of committing adultery

or even considering having a second wife. When both of you are sickle cell patients,

imagine how miserable your house would be. All your money may be spent on drugs and

hospital bills therefore you must be very careful on health issues before you marry. You

also have to watch the previous life-styles and habits of your partner because some

sicknesses are acquired through cultivated habits. Examples of these sicknesses include

the Almighty destroyer disease –AIDS, and other STDS. To avoid this, investigate the

previous lifestyles of your partner and if possible medical check-up and tests need to be

done. A lady who caused a lot of abortions may even be at risk of getting pregnant again

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so do well to investigate the background of your prospective partner before contracting

marriage. No matter how much you love him or her, outside pressure can lead you to

divorce you partner. This is because after several years of marriage, if there is no issue,

the in – laws of both sides may always be worried and show their concern. They may

give you pieces of advice, which may even be against your wish. Some may suggest you

visit shrines, occultists etc and if you are Christians, you will be confused and your life

will be miserable. In view of this, take your time and investigate the background of your

prospective partner and consult medical experts for counselling before contracting the

marriage.

G. ECONOMIC MATURITY

No woman would like to marry and be the sole breadwinner, baby sitter, and everything

for the house. Likewise, no man would like to marry and he would not have any support

from the wife. Anybody who is nubile must consider whether the partner has some sort of

economic security. Your prospective husband must be working so that he can support the

house. Also, your prospective wife must be ready to support the house in order to lessen

the financial burden of the husband. She must be industrious and ready to work or else

there will be misunderstanding in the house always and when an in–depth study is made,

it would be revealed that it is because you are not supporting each other.

Also, very important here is how you manager your resources. Where there is

mismanagement, problems may arise, so be careful how you spend whatever comes into

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the house. Your management of the house shows your maturity and would help you a lot

because economic situations these days are unbearable.

Mismanagement would create a situation when your children may even turn to be street

children and you will not have control over them. They may even become hard armed

robbers and drug addicts. In most cases, make sure you are employed or you are doing

something very profitable before marrying.

Finally, Economic immaturity will cause emotional imbalances in the house and causing

unnecessary quarrels everyday, as there is always tension in the house. When emotions

can no longer be controlled and frustrations set in, the only way out is to fight each other

to ease the tension on your heart and finally this will lead to divorce.

OTHER NECESSARY FACTORS

In order to consider marriage to someone, you need to tactfully analyse other factors

apart from those discussed above. In fact, all these considerations are not anything to

discourage you from marrying but for you to make the right choice and enjoy your

marriage life.

Imagine, you visit your partner’s house and just at that entrance, he or she is insulting the

parents or fighting with them or clubbing them or holding cutlass or knife on them. What

would be your immediate reaction apart from separating them from fighting? Usually,

because we are blind with love, we don’t consider these little things as important factors

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showing us the general lifestyle of our partners. However, they are very important to be

considered. He or she may do the same thing to you when you are married. This shows

how hot tempered he or she is. Don’t just close your eyes on such behaviours. If you

think you can leave with such a lifestyle, then you can go ahead. But don’t dream to

change that behaviour. This is the main reason why surprise visits to your prospective

partner’s house is important to enable you collect necessary information about his or her

behaviour yourself, not anybody packaging anything to you. In the above scenario, no

matter the offence of the parent, they do not deserve such treatments. You must be very

careful about such a person.

When you are walking with someone who has been divorced by someone, be watchful.

You must research well into his or her background because; you don’t know why he or

she was divorced. You must take your time to delve deep into his or her past life style,

marriage, and solicit more information before you enter into that union. May be the man

may be stingy; wife beater, womaniser etc. If you cannot cope with such situations, don’t

invite trouble to yourself. On the other hand, the woman may be a harlot, does not know

how to cater for a house, very lazy, or having some tainted characters, which cannot be

tolerated by the former husband. Be analytical and check if you can live with such

behaviours that she was exhibiting with the previous man.

Also, check if your partner is frank and trustworthy. Any one who can deceive you and

go to places and come back to tell you stories cannot be trusted. Beware of such a person.

Consider a man or a woman who will not be ready to tell you even her age. He or she

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may be somebody who will hide the real character. After you are married he or she might

bring his or her real self from the ‘store-house’. You will regret marrying such a person.

Frankness and trustworthiness is something, which can sustain your marriage life.

There are more factors, which can also be considered but l want to stress here that most

of the things are personal judgement. Nobody have to think for you. You will live with

the person for life so the decision is yours. And more so, you need divine guidance before

proposing to marry or accepting marriage proposal, else you will mess up your life.

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CHAPTER TWO-ANALYZING THE TYPE OF LOVE UNITING YOU

After considering the factors that you need to consider before marriage, it also important

to know that if there is no love, there is no way the two of you can coexist. There may be

‘perfect’ characters but if there is no love you cannot live together.

LOVE: WHAT IS IT?

Love, according to the advanced learners’ dictionary, is a warm, kind feeling between

two persons.

In other words, love may be defined in a different perspective as “a feeling of warm

personal attachment or deep affection, as for a friend, for a parent or child, and so forth”.

It can also be defined as a warm fondness or liking for another; or the kindly affection

properly expressed by God’s creatures toward one another. It can also be defined as that

strong or passionate affection for a person of the opposite sex that constitutes the

emotional incentive to conjugal union. One of the synonyms for love is “devotion.”

According to Mary am Lamanna and Agnes Reedmann, Love is a deep and vital emotion

resulting from significant need satisfaction by couple with a caring for and acceptance of

the beloved and resulting in mate relationship. Indeed, it is a natural feeling but not just a

romantic imagination between persons of opposite sex. It is a caring feeling responsible,

and sharing intimacy i.e. those in love must try as much as possible to disclose one’s

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inner feelings. Those in love must therefore feel good about each other and be ready to go

further and deeper in their relationship. You must respond positively to the other person’s

needs or feeling positively and helpful.

Being in love means you must change your life-style to suit your lover’s style of life

provided it may not lead you to sin. This is because; it is not easy to change some one to

your desirable state. Those in love must ignore certain attitudes or behaviours exhibited

by their partners. It may not necessarily mean you like that life-style of your lover. For

your partner to change such life–style, calls for tactfulness, so be very careful how you

tackle such issues. If it becomes necessary for you to point out a weakness, you must do

it politely. When it wants to generate into something else, never insist on your point,

accept the other person’s view. Gradually you can help him or her out. To change

someone is not a matter of a day’s activity by talking to the person only once.

Love relationships can never start and continue as you started. Disappointments and

disagreements will arise but the way you handle them maturely shows the depth of your

love for each other. Once you have accepted the flaws of each other and agree to live

with those flaws (i.e. adapting yourself to such flaws) you can keep the flames of your

love unquenchable. As you decide to go further and deeper into the relation, more

discerns may be made through self–revelation and disclosures. A greater self–revelation

and disclosure can bring a strong unity or disunity. When it brings disunity, the relation

may end on the rock. However, when it brings unity, intimacy becomes very light to the

extent that both of you may feel lonely as if the whole world has been taken away from

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you when one person travelled. Remember, that love is a continuous process. The process

can only end when you realize you cannot go further into it. However, if you decide to

go, the greater the problems and conflicts become. But if you can thrash out or tackle the

problems and the conflicts carefully, you will become successful and this will show your

maturity that you can marry each other. When conflicts and the problems usually remain

unsolved, it would be difficult for you to marry and be happy. It can even lead to divorce.

One particular ingredient, which needs to be carefully considered, is the style of love that

united the two of you.

STYLES OF LOVE

Human beings are naturally united in different ways. Some may be united through

physical attractions or through having a strong sexual feeling towards each other or

through a long time friendship. If you are in love with someone, it is better to assess how

you became united. Here are some of the love styles distinguished by different

psychologists. They include Eros, storge, Pragma, Agape, Ludus and mania.

EROS

When strong and powerful sexual feelings are experienced between two people as they

meet, the style of love, which is being expressed, is called Eros. It is a romantic type of

Love. There is an immediate sexual attraction when two people come into contact and

have that erotic attraction to each other. There is therefore the desire that they have affair

with each other. These types of lovers don’t care of what the other person is composed of.

Whether the person has a very good character or not has nothing to do with them. Their

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main preoccupation is to have sex with the person. No wonder, this type of lovers do not

stand the test of time. It fades away within a short period of time. It is not a good love

style, which can cause partners to marry to each other. The main thing is just, to have

sexual relationship, nothing more than this.

When this style of love unites you, there is this tendency of the couples not being faithful

to each other. It may also lead to situation where the partners may not trust each other.

Many marriages, these days, break because majority are united by this style of love.

When the sexual pleasure is no longer like the way it started the people involve feel like

having affairs outside the relationship and eventually tries to break with the partner since

the sexual drive is no longer serious as it started.

However, when you are married this type of Love is the ingredient that tries to sustain the

sexual desire in the couples and make them feel romantic towards each other.

MANIA

This love-style is similar to that of Eros. It depends on strong and powerful sexual

attraction and it is accompanied with a strong emotional intensity.

This style of love is best described by the definition of manic-depressive disorders. It is a

condition characterized by depressive episodes interspersed with periods in which mood

and energy are excessively elevated, in fact, well beyond normal levels of a good mood.”

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This type of lovers becomes jealous of each other especially when the other person is in

company with another person. They always need attention from their partners. When the

attention is not forth coming there is a higher tendency of depression resentment and

anxiety. When this persists, it may cause separation. However when there is a slight

warmth response the flame is rekindled. These lovers are unstable in mind and are not

marriageable. When married to such a person there is a higher tendency of in fidelity, so

be watchful. If you still insist to marry such a person, then, be prepared to show concern

and warmth to him or her always other than that, you may break up.

LUDUS

Here, love is seen as a recreational activity. These kinds of lovers perceive sex as a

recreational activity. To them it is only an amusement. It must be done for refreshment

purposes. As an example, a student who perceives sex as a recreational activity would

abandon his books to find someone to have sex with him or her before going back to

concentrate on his learning activity. To that person, it is only a way of refreshing ones

mind. These lovers normally don’t seek for everlasting love affairs. So far as they can

achieve their needs of recreation, they are all right.

AGAPE

This style of love does not evolve sexual desire. It is an unselfish concern for the other

person. It does not attract two people into sexual relationship. This style of love has no

condition attached. When two people are attracted together by this style of love, if it

demands that the other person should die for the friend, it can be possible. It is a very

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strong type of love. Indeed this is the love exhibited by our Lord Jesus Christ who died

for our sins. It therefore calls for sacrifice for the other person.

STORGE

Storgic lovers develop a deepening mutual commitment and respect for each other. It

usually results from familiarization and friendship over long period of time. This style of

love allows the lovers to study each other in different moods and at different places to

ascertain how each other behave at various places and in different moods.

In other words Storge´ designates the natural affection between close relatives and

especially between parents and their children. It describes the affection that brothers and

sisters have for one another and it has ever so many possibilities for happiness. It is this

facet of love that ties a mother to her child and causes a father ‘to show mercy to his

sons.’

However when two people from different background are united with this style of love

sexual passion and emotional intensity may result after the partners have taken time to

deepen the understanding of each other’s character or behaviour at different times. The

sexual passion and the emotional intensity are therefore the immediate by–products.

When this form of love unites you, you may be bound to understand each other’s

situation and know how best to solve your problems. This form of lovers, when married

can enjoy their marriage because there will be consensus always about what to do. This is

because, before the marriage, you have taken your time to see him or her in different

moods or situations and was convinced that you can cope with those behaviours when

you are married.

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PRAGMA

This is a practical assessment of the potentiality of a partner rationally. This type of

lovers, critically assess whether their partner would be an asset or a liability when they

are married. A lot of factors may be considered here before the approach is made on the

issue of marriage. Here, the partners consider the economic maturity, emotional maturity,

spiritual maturity, physical maturity etc before they propose or accept proposals.

COMMENTARY

A deeper understanding of how the two of you became united would help you to know

whether you can stand the test of time. When you are united by erotic or maniac styles of

love, your love relationship can break within a short period of time, especially when the

things you saw about each other before coming together is not forth coming. Pragmatic

and storgic lovers can develop their love relationship into marriage without problem.

It is very important to consider certain things that cannot help your relationship to grow

successfully. Below are few of these.

GIVING

Never try to maintain a love relationship through giving more than necessary to a partner

and receiving less or nothing at all in return. When one person wants to impress the other

person by giving too much, it does not augur well for a good relationship. Relationships

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last longer when both partners give affectionately to each other. Do not offer to do

everything for your partner. Particularly at the time that you are not married, avoid doing

everything to your partner. When it becomes necessary that you separate completely,

there will always be bad feelings, or bitterness in the heart of the person who gives so

much. This eventually would make him or her broken hearted to the extent that when he

or she sees the other partner walking with another person he or she feels like killing him

or her. If you don’t take time, you may even think so much that you will commit suicide

or be admitted at the psychiatric hospital for counselling. When in relationship, you must

also voice out what you need whilst you continue giving to your partner and see if he or

she can also provide you with those needs. Never continue giving alone. Your broken

heart will be more severe than his or her, so be careful how you give.

ATTENDANCE TO FUNCTIONS OR GATHERINGS

Do not allow your partner to constantly and continually be late to functions or

appointments you have to honour. This may create bitterness on your heart always. You

cannot continue waiting for too long. You can explain to your partner how you feel about

his or her lateness because it may cause you a lot of embarrassments in the future. When

you become married and you are invited to a place, his or her lackadaisical attitude can

affect you in diverse ways so point it out tactfully.

DISAPPOINTMENTS

Don’t try to hide your disappointments. When you express it, your partner will be alert

and would not try to do it again. However, when you hide it, next time it may be

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repeated. This might continue and you will also continue facing the same problem

always. It is better you mention it so as to be free rather than hiding it from him or her.

Don’t think he or she can read your mind to know your disappointments.

CONTROL

Do not try to control your partner too much. You must give him or her some time to think

and do certain things concerning him or herself. When you try to manipulate and control

your partner too much, there will be no happiness in your relationship as he or she may

have limited time to himself or herself. He or she might also find it very difficult to take

certain decisions.

EXPRESSING OF VIEWS

When expressing your views, do not insist that what you are saying is 100 percent

correct. Also, desist from using harsh and offensive words to express your views. You

must try to control your temperament and soothingly and softly express your view to

calm the other person’s anger. Avoid the use of unhealthy words, which will aggravate

the situation. Also, lead your partner to come out with his or her views so that he or she

feels it originates from him or her.

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INGREDIENTS OF LOVE RELATIONSHIP

DEEP AND VITAL EMOTION

Love relation must involve a very deep, strong and important emotion towards one

another. This deep emotion naturally motivate a person to behave in a way to help satisfy

the needs of affection, material, and helping one to be caring and accepting one’s partner

the way he or she is. This deep and strong feeling must occur unconsciously and without

rational effort.

Love is not the same as like, it is deeper than liking. Whilst like involves recognition of

individual’s socially desirable qualities, love involves emotional closeness and

attachment to a person thought to be unique (Mary Ann Lamanna & Agnes Riedmann,

1973).

When in love you must show concern for the growth of your partner in the same way you

wish to grow yourself. You must indeed associate yourself with your partner’s problems

and happiness. When there is the need for him or her to attend to personal issues, you

must give that chance and reassure your partner. You must also be determined to develop

your relationship to the extent that problems are worked together, conflicts are solved

with each other, thus by one person accepting the views of the other, funs must be have

together and thoughts expressed freely. This indeed is commitment and disagreements to

agree on the best. Above everything, try to fulfil the needs of your partners, ranging from

emotions, self-revelation, and material and financial. Lovers must in fact be passionate

but not compassionate.

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CHAPTER THREE-TEMPERAMENTS

Naturally, all human beings exhibit different characters. No two persons exhibit the same

life-style. There are always differences in their behaviours. A careful study of your

partner’s life–style or character and actions would help you tolerate him or her .In the

broader sense, life-style or character may be classified in to two major categories namely

Extrovert and Introvert. These are the major temperaments we can see in life. However

they can be broken into other classifications. All these classifications are discussed in this

section and a careful study of all of them will help the reader so much. In marriage the

study of temperament differences is a very good tool in preventing quarrels in the house.

It serves as a fire hydrant when there is a firework in the house. Most fracases in the

house can be prevented when the temperament of your partner is studied carefully.

Every society has their own customs that they use to solve problems for the married

couples but these has limitations and can still not prevent quarrels. You need to critically

assess your partner’s behaviours in different moods to help you know how he or she will

react to certain misunderstandings and jokes especially when he or she is under stress or

pressure or any tension.

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EXTROVERTS

An extrovert is someone who is concern with things happening around him rather than

his own thoughts and feelings. He enjoys himself by drawing energy from other people

thereby achieving his aim. Whenever an extrovert is not in contact with anybody, he/she

feels lonely. The extroverts are therefore said to be sociable and have multiples of

relationships. Extroverts can be classified again into two main categories namely the

sanguine and the choleric

SANGUINE

The sanguine is described as a person of warm heart, spontaneous, and amiable. They are

very outgoing. To the sanguine, excitement is their walking stick. Wherever they find

themselves, they only look out for excitement. They usually regard duty and power as

secondary to enjoyment and amusement. Indeed, they are cheerful and are full of fun.

Because they are people oriented, they are regarded as conversationalists. You can’t be

with a sanguine and refuse to laugh. You will be induced by his laughter and

amusements. No matter whatever they are doing, they usually take sometime off to make

fun. When confronted, they are ever ready to give excuses for their failures and say they

are sorry.

A critical look at a sanguine shows that because they are people oriented, whenever their

spouse are travelled, they look for someone with whom they may keep company because

they feel lonely and wish to have somebody with them.

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Concerning their sexuality, they like multiple sexes the same way they have multiple

friends. To the sanguine, sex must be enjoyed as a fun. Any little expression of sexual

interest by their spouses put them on course. They usually think love issues must be

impulsive and immediate.

CHOLERIC

This is another class of extrovert. This group has a strong will and takes decision quickly.

A pattern of life, whilst acquired cannot easily be changed in a choleric. They are hot–

tempered, impatient and hardly forgive. The choleric try to force people to bow to their

plans and ideas, which they always think is the best. They are indeed harsh. Their goal is

extra- ordinary and has difficulty. Placing limits on their amount of time and energy they

devote to their work. They usually make unreasonable demands on both themselves and

others around them. Choleric in general have no sympathy for those who are weak. Due

to this character, they are mostly disciplinarians and satisfied when people bow to their

plans even if it is not the best. Choleric usually demean others.

In love relationship they die for love. They express their love using poetry, music and

quotation to enhance their courtship relationships. They are capable of sustaining deep

intimacy. When expressing their love, it is done mainly through gifts. This is usually

done in privacy and with symbolic meaning for example apple, rose-flower etc. Special

occasions like birthdays, Christmas, New Year, and Easter etc are always remembered

by a choleric and they always try to present gifts to their partners. However, when it is

their turn and it is not reciprocated, they feel hurt. The choleric also search for variety. In

view of this character, most are involved in extra- marital relationships. When there is a

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little problem, which can easily be solved, they rather find consolation somewhere else.

They also dislike deepening already existing relationships especially when there is

always a misunderstanding.

INTROVERTS

This class of people are the direct opposites of extroverts. The introvert is someone who

is inward upon him or herself. Introverts are always interested in their own thought and

feelings than things outside them. When living a solitary life they turn to be happy,

however, when in company of people, they rather feel lonely. Mostly, they draw their

energy from being alone and performing activities, which involve only few people or

nobody at all, except themselves. When at parties, or other social gatherings, they usually

experience isolations. Due to this behaviour, they try always to keep things to themselves

rather than revealing it to friends. When you find them in a mood, which indicates that

there is something amiss, they may not be ready to confess. They prefer stomaching

everything that happens to them. Introverts also has different classifications such as

melancholy and phlegmatic.

MELANCHOLY

Melancholic are people who are best described as moody and gloomy. They are self –

centred and prefer sitting in the house, to going out for fun. They prefer listening to music

and watching Television. They are usually interested in solitary activities, which is more

appealing to them. Melancholic are analytical and think a lot about why something must,

happen the way it happened. Indeed, the melancholic are creative. They think when a job

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or duty or any task is to be executed, it is their duty. They feel they are obligated to see to

the execution and accomplishment of that job. When extra duty is added to their

schedule, they feel hurt when they reject it. No matter how exhausted they may be, they

will take up that responsibility because they don’t know how to say ‘No’ to an extra duty.

One particular word that psychologists, used to describe a melancholic is that they are

DEPENDABLE.

In love relationships, the melancholic is possessive. They are devoted to their partner.

They express affection in standard ways. Expression of love is usually in ritualistic

language. To them, gifts must be given on appropriate occasions and must be kept and

treasured. They prefer courting before actual marriage and once the vow is taken, they

become so much committed. They turn to be solemn about sexual activities. They use sex

as a way of easing themselves from fatigue. After sex, they express their appreciation to

their partner because they have been relieved from fatigue. They are found of expressing

themselves in sexual jokes but only when in small groups that are very close to them. In

fact melancholy is a rich temperament, which a lot of people wish and sought after. They

always try to avoid embarrassing situations by keeping to themselves. When a

melancholy becomes aggrieved they always bring out all that they have stored in their

mind. They are suspicious, indecisive and do not act immediately. They weigh things

over and over again before taking decision.

PHLEGMATICS

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This is another type of Introvert, which is best described by the word “COMPETENCY.

They always believe that people must know what they are thinking about. To them,

people must try to read their minds and know what they are about to say. They always

think of being competent, hence they check themselves frequently in order to attain the

level of competency they desire. In view of these characteristics, they are regarded as

“Well –balanced”. Phlegmatic always want to improve but fail to take action. In view of

these, they become spectators. However, they are self-critical, checking themselves

where they have erred and resolves quickly to improve upon themselves. They never

believe they know enough but rather a little.

To communicate with others, the phlegmatic is brief and logical. They are apt and precise

in the choice of language or words. When joking, they may not laugh but would however

induce others to laugh. To them, the past is forever and the future is more important,

however, past helps to avoid repeating the previous mistakes.

In love relationships, the phlegmatic seem cold and unemotional. Their emotions are

always hidden. A close look at their eyes can give you dues about their reactions. In

expressing their love emotions, it is very difficult and in frequent. When disappointed in

love relationships, they are not seriously hurt. They only experience mild regrets.

However, once they become committed to a relationship, it becomes very difficult for

them to change their hearts. The phlegmatic develop intimate relationship very slowly.

They don’t take delight in special days say birthdays, Christmas, Easter, Republic Days,

independence days, Valentine days etc. In sexual relationships, they try to explore

possibilities of erotic arousal. They are so much aware of the technicalities of sex. They

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actually know the skills, both physical and psychological to induce partners to sex. They

hate discussing past relationships with others.

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CONCLUSION

A look at all the four temperaments reveals a lot of characteristics found in each. When

you study your partner carefully and know the temperament, you can go a long way with

him or her. You can relate with your partner superbly because you have studied when he

or she becomes angry, sexually aroused, happy etc. also you can discern things he or she

prefer and things he or she doesn’t prefer so that you relate with him or her perfectly.

However, some partners may exhibit combinations of these characteristics of the

temperaments. You must be very observant so as to critically assess the temperaments.

When you are aware of your partner’s temperament you will also exhibit life-style which

will be suitable to your partner. In effect, you can enjoy you marriage life and avoid

fracas in the house.

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CHAPTER FOUR –THE DECISION POINT

MAKING THE CHOICE

Decision-making is a problem to every human being. A decision whilst taken can either

spoil your future or improve your life. There are certain decision, when taken, and you

feel you have started failing, you can reverse it, however, there are some, decisions, when

taken will affect you and can never be reversed.

In view of the dangers associated with wrong and hasty decision making, it is advisable

that, you take time and think properly about the impact the decision will make on you

before you act. As ordained by our creator and emphasized by Christ and the apostles

especially Paul, marriage should be forever clinching to a partner until death parts you.

This is the reason why you need to take your time and never rush into marriage. You

must therefore consider critically the behaviour exhibited by your partner before you

finally decide on marrying each other. Before taking a decision on marrying, consider the

following properly:

PRAYER

You don’t have to just enter into marriage without consulting your creator for divine

guidance. Before you even propose to the person your desire to marry, pray to God for

direction and wait for what He will put on your heart. Your emotions and mind must be

controlled to allow the heart to accept whatever God asks you to do. After accepting

God’s guidance, make your mind once and for all that you will live with your partner

until death parts you. In everything, be content with your partner and know that since you

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consult your creator before taking the decision he or she is who God prepared for you.

Any fault on the person may be what God wants you to correct about yourself. Accept the

person, the way he or she is and forget about faults and plan well in order to progress

spiritually, emotionally, financially, socially and psychologically. God is the source of all

good things so depend only on him, not on anyone else. Prophets, pastors, elders etc may

be of help but, to be frank with you, there are so many false prophets and pastors out

there, so be very careful that these false prophets, pastors and teachers don’t lead you to

any bad situation. This is why your source of everything should be your creator, God

.Look for genuine pastors and prophets of God and confine in them to help you .If you

neglect God whilst making your choice either through prayer, genuine prophets and

pastors, your life will be miserable. Know that all good things are from God and He alone

can make your marriage life successful, so talk to Him on any problem you find in

making your choice. It is advisable you tune yourself to the Divine Being for his

guidance .He has his own ways of confirming your choice. Don’t think, because your

friend had his or her confirmation through dreams, so yours must also be through dreams.

Yours may be through a pastor, direct revelation etc so wait and look up to God.

PASTORAL COUNSELLING

Human beings are not only a physical being but spiritual beings also; they need to seek

spiritual advice. This indeed can be provided when they communicate to the creator

through prayer and fasting. They can also consult their pastors to give advice apart from

your prayer and fasting. These Pastors can counsel you on what to do in making a choice

for they are your earthly spiritual fathers.

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The pastors could also give you pre-marital counselling to equip you well with what to

expect when you marry and what to do in marriage.

MATURE GUIDANCE

Apart from God’s guidance and pastoral counselling, seek also matured advice from

older married people. You must confirm your intention of marrying someone to your

parent or guardians, so that they can also conduct their own personal and underground

investigations about the suitability of your partner to you. There is a saying a saying that

“where an old man can see whilst sitting down can never be seen by a Youngman

standing up”. Your parents and any other matured married person will be of help to you.

Consult them. However their advice should not be final, your decision is always final.

Whilst consulting them, don’t try to hide any relevant information .This will help them

give you a proper advice.

EXPECTATIONS OF YOUR PARTNER

After these spiritual preparations and matured counselling from elderly people and the

pastors, another important thing which needs to be considered is that you must critically

and judiciously assess if you can meet the expectations of the person you want to marry.

If you cannot fulfil the person’s expectations, you may be wasting his or her time. It is

even better you don’t propose or accept the person’s proposal. However all the qualities

and expectations cannot be satisfied. When you can get about two – thirds (2/3) of the

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qualities you expect, from your prospective partner, then you are almost successful in

your marriage. The rest of the qualities that your partner has not got can be worked at.

TRUST

In order to live a lovely life in your marriage, one of the most important ingredients on

which marriage must be built is TRUST. As you start the relationship, create the

environment of Trust from the very first day you have seen the person and make sure

whilst you are still friends, you trust each other. When there are doubts about your

character your marriage will be full of mistrust and suspicions. Some people argue that

since you are yet married, you need not trust your spouse-to-be. I have to disagree with

this assumption because, if you don’t trust each other whilst even before making the

choice, you may be making a very great mistake.

RELIGION

When making a choice consider whether the religious affiliation of your partner will not

seriously affect you. To be precise, if you are a Christian, can you compromise your faith

in Christ with your partners faith in idolatry or Islamic. This is a serious and a thorny

issue you need to consider seriously before making the choice.

It is advisable that when you are a Christian, you must have nothing doing with your

Islamic partner or traditionalist partner. Do not make the mistake that your marriage to

him or her can bring a change. You are not God. The devil is also doing everything

possible to destroy you as a Christian and will try to make your life very miserable. If it

is due to the riches of the traditionalist or Moslem partner that is why you want to marry

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him or her and later try to convert him or her, you may be committing a serious mistake

which will leave you in a miserable situation. Read Proverb 27:24, Psalm 37:16.It is

advisable both of you start from rags and work towards getting rich rather than

considering marrying an already cooked person who can destroy your life.

In addition to these considerations, carefully consider those factors also explained in

chapter one. However, remember you cannot have all the qualities in someone before

marrying him or her, so, when your priorities are satisfied, then go ahead and marry your

partner.

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CHAPTER FIVE-AFTER THE CHOICE, WHAT NEXT?

When a choice is made, you have crossed one of the difficult hurdles of life. As already

stressed, your choice can either cause your doom or your prosperity. If you have made a

better choice, your life will be full of peace and tranquility. Peace in your life is far better

than all riches you will enjoy. However, after the choice, what then do you do.

PREPARATION TOWARDS MARRIAGE

It is assumed that after you have all agreed to each other, you need to introduce each

other to your parents to have their support and blessing. When the introduction is made

and all parents are satisfied you can go ahead to plan your marriage. Most at times, it is at

this time that there is always frustration. When your partner’s parents reject you or your

parents reject your partner, you will become confused to the extent that you think all is

lost in life. Indeed, it is not easy searching for a life partner and then all of a sudden such

partner is rejected due to reasons best known to your parents or just because of mere

hatred of the tribe of your partner by your parents. At this point in time, you have to

relax, seek the face of God and patiently convince your parents to know the reasons why

you have finally decided on marrying such a person. You have studied your partner and

know the qualities he or she possessed, prompting you to propose to or accept such a

person. Your explanation and conviction would show your parents that you are matured

enough to decide what is good for you. When your partner is rejected, and you cannot

explain anything to your parents as a way of convincing them, their conclusion would be

you are not matured to marry. You must convince them beyond any reasonable doubt that

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you have seen qualities which can make you live a peaceful and joyous married life. If

after first opposition from your parents and you relax and said since my parents cannot

agree let’s separate, it shows your immaturity as it would mean that in your married life,

other people apart from your parents can also influence you so much that you can not do

things on your own. Do not get frightened when your parents grow wild. When this is

happening you need to be tactful and seriously pray to God for direction.

In this crisis, both of you have to be united because when you have the other person alone

to fight it would even show that in your relationship as husband and wife, you will not

support your partner in difficult situations. Your support will even encourage him or her

to fight further and press hard to successfully convince the parents. Unity in this issue

would be a strong force for victory. When one party remains careless and shows no

concern, the whole situation becomes daisy and you will definitely be defeated. You need

to be one to fight this war. Never think that when you neglect your partner and he or she

finally succeeds, life will be easy for you. He or she may be contemplating your love for

him or her because as previously seen, love is a deep and vital emotion resulting from

significant need satisfaction, coupled with a caring for and acceptance of the beloved, and

resulting in an intimate relationship. When all these features cannot be seen in your love

life and you feel to neglect your partner in this crisis, indeed what is transpiring between

the two of you might not be love. Read Roman 12:9-16

Now after everything has been finalized with your parents, you are now free to plan how

your marriage ceremony would be.

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ENGAGEMENT AND CUSTOMARY MARRIAGE RITES

When you are accepted by your prospective in-laws, you are now free to prepare. The

man at this time, need to consult the parents-in-law to see what are needed for the

marriage rites. Here, a lot of bargains are made concerning the items you are asked to

present as dowry. These things depend on the customs of the tribe of your wife-to–be.

Every tribe has her own requirements for dowry. However, it is advisable that the

families of the wife-to–be to be more flexible in order not to put the couples in trouble.

Basically, if a man proposed to a woman and there was an agreement, you must make up

your mind to start buying the essential things for the engagement. These essential things

includes cloths, rings, suits, shoes, bags, pants, jewellery, drinks, (in some areas, the

drinks that are collected are payable in money), wedding dress or gowns. In some areas

also, the dowry is not very expensive. You must therefore be informed about these things

so that at the shortest possible time you can possess them.

THE BLESSING CEREMONY

This is a ceremony which seals the union of two people. It is a ceremony in which the

blessing of God is asked on the marriage. It is not a ceremony of showing riches. In view

of this, it is not advisable to invest all your resources in it and after the wedding

ceremony, you live in abject poverty. When you owe people during your wedding

ceremony and start your married life in negative prosperity, you may end up negatively in

life as there will be no joy and peace in your marriage.

As a novice, it is advisable you receive proper counselling from your pastors, church

elders (of course those married), parents and friends. You need to ask those who had

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wedding, how they made it without debt. Expensive, wedding indeed cannot help you in

any way. Cut your coat according to your size.

Expensive wedding is no good economic management. It only reveals your inability to

manage the little that you have in order to improve upon your situation. Furthermore it

shows your immaturity in management. You may subject yourself to public ridicule

especially when you owe a lot of people after the wedding.

Presently due to harsh economic situations facing a lot of people, do not make the

mistake that people attending the ceremony will contribute so much to help you defray

your indebtedness. Some may even come without contributing anything. If you want to

“make shows”, they may also show you that they have come only to see your shows by

neglecting you and refusing to contribute to you. Be very careful and plan a simple

wedding and live in peace not in “piece of debts” from all corners. The main idea behind

wedding is to show the public that from now, you are married couples. You are no longer

singles, so please and please, no matter how much riches you have, how beautiful the

lady may be that you want to show her beauty at public or whatever your aim may be, do

everything moderately. Expensive weddings cannot take you any where. Even if it is the

woman that demands it, make her realize that, after everything, when you don’t have so

much again, she may start complaining and may even dessert you.

LIFE AFTER BLESSING

This is the most difficult aspect of marriage life. The wedding itself is just a ceremony of

blessing. The life you live after the wedding is what matters. Now that the two of you are

coming to live together, problems and challenges may come your ways. You need to face

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these problems and challenges courageously or else, your marriage life will be a fiasco or

“a nine day wonder”. This is why you need to study each others carefully before

beginning the marriage life. Actually whilst in courtship you cannot detect all that you

think are flaws about your spouse. The actual enjoyment and challenges of marriage life

starts after the blessing. The way you handle the situations without approaching people

for solution to your personal problems determine your maturity. Life after the blessing

will be enjoyable if you understand each other. The few years of the marriage will pose

several challenges since the two of you were not bred in the same house under the same

conditions and situations. The way you are able to resolve these challenges will go a long

way to strengthen your relationship. Majority of the problems you will experience in

marriage life may be attributable to few of these;

ECONOMIC PROBLEMS

In the precious old days, globalization and level of civilization was not as high as now.

The whole world is now very greedy that selfish has become the order of the day. Man is

no longer satisfied with what he is having. As a result, prices of most basic commodities

are now very high. If your income is not sufficient, and you want to live extravagant life,

you will find yourself in trouble. Education of your children, payment of utility bills,

getting food for the house, shelter and supply of clothing are the most pressing wants.

Prices of these items are very escalating that conflicts may never end in the house when

you don’t understand each other and plan how best to solve your financial problems in

the house. You can never dodge these economic problems unless of course you are rich

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and have a business which can constantly and continuously supply you money to buy all

items for your family.

In order to avoid petty quarrels in the house make sure you always disclose you income

to your partner. When you all know how much you have it will help you to plan what to

do and what not to do. Agree on what to purchase in a particular month. Never think you

are the head of the house and that whatever you spent your income on is not the business

of your partner. As the woman of the house also do not think that since he is the head of

the house he must always provide every little thing in the house. Endeavour to have

Financial Policy. This policy will guide you to be Economic Independent and live a debt

free life. You can refer to Prof. Adei’s book on 12 Key to Financial Success to draw a

very good Financial Policy to guide you on how to manage your finances as newly

married people. There are other good books on Management of Finances.

FULFILLMENT OF MARITAL OBLIGATION

The fulfilment of marital obligation is one of the sensitive factors that hinder enjoyment

in marriage. Imagine a house where a housewife would not cook, look after the children

well and do not help the husband in anyway. She sits down and looks at the man going up

and down and would not even cook for him to come back and eat. When the husband

comes back home, he has to cook, wash the bowls and bath the children whilst the wife

sits down unconcern. Upon all these, the woman shouts on the man. Well, there is

nothing wrong with the husband doing the house chores, but in the situation where the

woman does practically nothing and depends on the husband will definitely create

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problems in the marriage. Definitely this man would start going to town to solicit comfort

from other women. In the final analysis, there will definitely be break up in the marriage.

Also, a man who comes back from work lately, expecting the wife to be a “watch-

woman” over the food she has cooked is not worthy to be married because he might be

having fun with other women and be treating the wife in the house like a maid-servant. In

some cases, sexual relationships are just like a war field. The woman would not allow the

man, and when the man goes out to the town to have fun, it is then that the woman would

start being jealous. Indeed, going to the town should not be the solution because, there is

the killer disease now i.e. HIV/ AIDS, so you need to be very careful. More so, adultery

is a sin against your own body and God which you need to avoid as much as possible.

Whatever the problem may be, you can solve it. It is only when one partner has made up

his or her mind not to listen and come to agreement with the other that life becomes

unbearable in the house. Husband and wife need to come to compromise and eschew all

forms of embitteredness. Becoming very proud that the other partner becomes nothing at

your sight may not solve the problem. Be careful, if you misbehave, your life may be

miserable and there will be fire works in the house. There will be no peace. Marriage life

is not the same as during courtship. However, if you want to enjoy and live as friends like

during the courtship period, it is the duty of the two of you.

SOCIAL FACTORS

Human beings are social beings. If you don’t want to live with your neighbours then your

life would be very awkward. There are a lot of social factors that affects marital life.

When you want to make friends, you must know the type of friends to make. It is not

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advisable to marry and have a lot of the opposite sex as friends. This may raise some

suspicions and jealousy. This in effect will make your partner not to trust you any longer.

In addition, if you have friends who are drunkards, smokers, womanizers, kleptomaniac,

armed robbers etc, you may also be regarded as one of such people and your reputation

and integrity will be at risk. You cannot avoid making friends but know how and what

types of friend you need to have.

RELATIONSHIP WITH IN–LAWS

In African perspective, marriage is a union between two families. It is not a union

between only the couples. This culture indeed is a rich one however it is fading away due

to multiplicity of culture in African because of globalization. Conflicts in marriage are

easily and well resolved when there is understanding between the two families. Where

there is a problem which cannot be easily resolved between the couples, the union of the

families especially the in–laws can easily resolve it amicably. However, due to cultural

pluralism, this rich culture has faded away.

In addition, selfish desires by the in-laws have affected the former roles that in-laws play

in marriage. They usually think that their daughter or their son is doing a lot to the other

partner and the families at their neglect hence will do everything possible to destroy the

marriage. In-laws must therefore be patient with their children and the couples too must

know how to treat their in-laws in order not to bring misunderstanding.

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EMOTIONAL FACTORS

One important factor that sustains marriage is the control of your emotions. Submit your

emotions to the control of your Lord Jesus Christ and the Holy Spirit. Do not let your

emotions to override you. Soften them when they want to control you. You must control

your emotions. Do not allow the emotions to control you. When you cannot subject your

emotions to your own control, you may explode and later regret. You need patience in

your marital life. Indeed, the control of emotions is not easy; however, you can work

towards achieving soft emotions if you depend on the Holy Spirit. Most extroverts

explode before regretting that they have gone too far. The emotions can lead you into a

lot of problems which you may later live to regret. “Our action today may be the real

regrets of our tomorrow” so it is better you subject your self to the control of God

Almighty to enable you take good decisions so as to improve upon your life.

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