- 3 years ago
I’m struggling with some of the reactions I’ve received from my family members regarding our elopement.
My husband and I have been together for 7 years, living together for almost all of that time. For the majority of our relationship, I was an Atheist. My now-husband has always been Christian. In late 2013, we went to an amazing church that a co-worker of mine suggested. I had been to a few different churches with my husband before, but I never felt compelled to believe in God. After 1 service at *this* church, I was saved. The Holy Spirit just took over my emotions, and I found myself crying during the entire service. I decided that I would give my life to God and proclaim Jesus Christ as my Lord and Savior.
So, about 1 week after my salvation we decided to get right with God and get married. We’d been together for 7 years and had never talked seriously about marriage. But after accepting God into my heart, I felt very strongly that we should get married. So, we went to the courthouse and had a private wedding ceremony. It was a beautiful moment that both of us will always cherish.
Now, we faced a decision: do we tell our families? We decided to hold off on telling our families; we weren’t sure how to explain the reasoning behind the elopement. We knew that the reason was God. But explaining that to my family, who is also mostly Atheist, was going to prove a challenge. And explaining it to his family – who fell away from God and the church – was another sensitive situation to consider. So, we decided to keep quiet.
Since we skipped the “engagement” part of the process, I wasn’t expecting an engagement ring. However, my husband decided that he wanted me to feel like a princess, so he “proposed” to me with a gorgeous diamond ring while we were at Disneyland. Although we were legally married, I was shocked when he did this. I bawled my eyes out and decided to share the resulting pictures on Facebook, exclaiming, “I’m engaged!” Apparently that was a bad move. I willfully told my family and friends on Facebook that I was “engaged” even though I knew I was married.
Shortly after the “engagement,” we met with one of our Pastors to ask his advice on how to handle this whole situation. He agreed that we did the right thing in getting married after finding (me) and rediscovering (husband) God. He actually told us that this isn’t uncommon amongst new/renewed Christian couples – that many Christian couples have eloped after finding/rediscovering God. HOWEVER, he said, YOU REALLY SHOULD TELL YOUR FAMILIES.
In the days following our meeting with our Pastor, both my husband and I informed our parents of our marriage. Both of our parents reacted positively, with my dad bordering on negative. Shortly after telling our parents, we decided to announce it on Facebook. Now, all of our family members and friends know that we are, in fact, Mr. and Mrs. – and that we will be having a traditional wedding/reception in the very near future.
The Issue (I bet you thought I was never gonna get here!):
By the grace of God, my husband’s family is excited and thrilled about the news.
However, there are a few members of my family who are upset about the elopement. They feel angry, confused, and betrayed. I have apologized to them for causing these feelings, and explained to them that I never intended any harm. I asked them to forgive me for my deceitfulness.
I guess I wasn’t expecting this kind of a reaction. And I’m praying to God and seeking his counsel and comfort. But I guess I would just like to know if the feelings of my family members are justifiable…I’m struggling with feeling annoyed by their reactions. Part of me just wants to say, “Who cares HOW I got married? Why can’t you just be happy for me?”
Any words of encouragement would be very much appreciated!