- She dreams of a double-storey townhouse surrounded by flowers and lush green grass in a leafy suburb close to her office. He dreams of zero debt, meaning no bond, a rental apartment instead, while they save, until they have enough cash to pay for an affordable home, not necessarily double-storied or in a leafy suburb.
- She thinks the cars they each currently own can last at least two more years. He can’t wait to buy the latest model of his make once they get married as he plans to spend as little as possible of his savings on the honeymoon which is all up to him as it will be a surprise to her.
- She looks forward to regular candlelit dinner dates, flowers, gifts and romantic getaways. He wants to save every penny for the affordable home he plans to buy for her in a couple of years.
- She plans to further her studies being ambitious and hopes he is too. He is happy with his current level of formal education and actually would just like to be a stay-at-home-dad.
- She wants four children just like her mom. He wants two children, just like his mom.
Neither she nor he mention, let alone discuss, their expectations in any thoughtful manner, they just can’t wait to get married.
A few weeks after they get married, he loses his job and their family income is halved. It comes as a complete surprise to the both of them, something they never considered a possibility.
Deep, deep disappointment of crushed expectations that may then seem unrealized or impossible can cause enormous tension in marriage and in a young marriage it can be extremely destructive as you feel you might as well get out early since you haven’t invested much time in the marriage. This is not God’s way.
We all have expectations of our spouses-to-be and of marriage but do we ever give it serious consideration before marriage?
Don’t be ashamed to be “naked” about your wildest expectations of your future husband and of marriage before you walk down the isle for the following reasons:
- he will know your future expectations of him and he of you- transparency;
- he can highlight which expectations may be unrealistic whether it relates to timing or a change in circumstances or a change in wealth, resources or money that may arise in future and so can you – honesty;
- together you can then decide how you will try and meet all these future expectations and how to address “when the real world sets in” and life does not follow your script.
If you still have major unmet expectations that cause friction in your marriage, don’t resolve it by fighting each other but by;
- earnestly seeking God through prayer;
- standing on the Word;
- using you own God-given wisdom;
- or by asking for help from trusted counselors if you need to.
Whilst you can’t possibly anticipate and discuss every future expectation that may arise in your marriage, it is essential that you address the key ones as a minimum and the ways in which you will address unmet or changed expectations.
Most importantly put God first, as His Word says and He will provide what you need.
Matthew 6:33-34 NIV
 But seek first his kingdom and his righteousness, and all these things will be given to you as well.  Therefore do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about itself. Each day has enough trouble of its own.
Proverbs 19:21 NIV
Many are the plans in a person’s heart, but it is the Lord’s purpose that prevails