When you think back to the day you got married, there should be two important words that come to mind. Those two words said that you wanted to join in covenant with your spouse. You said “I do” in promise to be true to your loved one, in good times and in bad, in sickness and in health, to love them and honor them all the days of your life. You looked into the eyes of your spouse with great anticipation of the life to come. To that life to come, you said . . . “I do!” But, what you might not have realized with that “I do”, came “I’m done” as well. While many have found this list to be untrue (as evidenced by a divorce rate hovering around 50%), the “I’m done” is the other side of the “I do” coin, if your promises were true that day. Here are a list of a few “I’m done’s” if you forgot to flip over that “I do” coin on that ceremonious day.
“I’m Done Looking”
When you said “I do” that meant for life (until death do us part). When you are married, you have decided that you have already caught the right one, which means you are done looking for another one. Some people like to say it is okay to look as long as you don’t touch . . . the problem with that philosophy is when you look hard, you are already touching with your heart. Looking at someone else as a possible mate is telling your current one that they are not good enough. But that is not what you said the day you took your vows. So, “I do” also means “I’m done looking”.
“I’m Done Holding Another”
Those words, “To have and to hold” mean different things to different people. For my wife, that means she wants me to go to bed at the same time as her each night. When you said “I do” you also said that you would hold on to each other exclusively. Holding on to one another also means letting go of others. When you said “I do,” that not only meant that you would no longer be with another person physically, but mentally as well. It is not just your body that becomes one flesh, but your mind as well, which is why you also said I’m done holding onto anyone else. I do give you my heart. I do give you my body, and I am done holding on to anyone in my past that ever possibly had a part of me (an exception would be if your previous spouse had died). This is to say, “I do to you, and I am done with all others of my past.”
“I’m Done Putting Myself First”
You may have a similar story to mine… I got married in my late 20’s. That meant I had already been an adult for close to 10 years. I was set in my ways of doing things. However, when I said those two words I ceased being myself, and became one flesh with another. When you have that one flesh union you are supposed to put that person’s needs before your own (Phil. 2:3). For example . . . “I want to go hunting this weekend.” Have you talked to the other side of your flesh about that? Or, “I want to go on a weekend shopping retreat with the girls.” Have you spoken to your husband about that one? So, when you and your spouse said “I do” in those marriage vows, you also said, “I’m done putting myself first.”
Marriage is wonderful. It is sanctifying. It shows the picture of Christ and the church. When you were drawn unto the Lord and came to know Him in a personal way, you not only became a new person, but you also did away (through Christ while continuing to be sanctified) with the old person. This is the same thing you did when you got married. You said to your husband or wife, “I do choose to marry you . . . and only you for life, and I am done living with only myself in mind. I do and I am done.”
Can you think of any other “I’m done’s” that I missed? Feel free to add them to the list.
Soli Deo Gloria,
Adam B Burrell