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Thursday, August 23, 2012

“to surrender or give up, or permit injury or disadvantage to, for the sake of something else.”

The title of the post is the definition, found at dictionary.com, of a word. Can you guess what word it is? If you guessed sacrifice, you are correct. If not, well…

Is sacrifice important in a marriage? Absolutely not. It is vital to a marriage. When my wife and I were wed we both sacrificed some of our freedoms to come and go as we please and traded it for increased accountability to one another. I now share with my wife where I am going, with whom, and approximate return times, etc. and she does the same with me. Sometimes I have to forgo participating in an activity or staying later at work so that she can go somewhere or because she needs someone to talk to. She sacrificed her career so that she could stay home and raise our children. We have passed up pursuing job opportunities because we felt that they would take us away from one another. We have made sacrifices. However, I believe that there is one piece missing from the definition above. I would amend it to the end so that the definition would read:

“to surrender or give up, or permit injury or disadvantage to, for the sake of something else OF GREATER VALUE.”

It’s that “greater value” part that I think is the key. If our spouse and marriage were not worth more than ourselves but were of equal value and provided equal happiness there wouldn’t be much point to marriage. I mean you don’t see people twitterpated with themselves (this is a shout out to Bambi). So relationships bring more happiness which is of greater value than less happiness. This means that sacrifice in a relationship, the right kinds of sacrifice, brings greater happiness. Sacrifice is essential to a happy marriage. Making sacrifices in marriage demonstrates that our spouse and our marriage are more important than we are; when we make the right sacrifices our individual and collective happiness increase.

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