Our paths crossed in 1986 and I fell madly in love with Shahidra, but we struggled and fought for our rights to be right. It was like we were meant to be together, but fate can sometimes tempt and then remind us that we are not always right. It wasn’t easy but our union became stronger, we made progress and maximized our true love for each other in 1991 when we got married. Our romance produced our first child, our daughter Shermaily. Then our second child, our son Raynard was born. The Lord blessed us with four more daughters; Shirlyane, Rowayna, Shamuëla and Ranan.
One year after the birth of Ranan, we began to argue more and more and nothing seemed to be going right. This kept going on and getting more and more on my nerve that in 2008 I finally asked God, my Father: ”Is this everything marriage is?” And added: “If this is it, I won’t want to be married, I will just get a divorce”. Then the Lord answered me and said:”Do you remember what you said about marriage when you were 12 years old?”. Yes, I did remember clearly, because I didn’t forget were I came from. When I was 12 years old I said and made a promise to myself. “I will be married to the mother of my children”.”I will be a father to my children”.”I won’t let my children be brought up by another man living with their mother”.
I made these statements and promises to myself after seeing and experiencing the hurt and pain of not being part of a whole family, because my father was not married to my mother. In fact the majority of children I knew and saw growing up were from single parents; being alone with their mothers. And men having children with different women, but not staying in their lives or taking the responsibilities of being a father. This had a major impact on me that I decided with my 12 years that I was not going to do that when I grow up and had children of my own.
The Lord said:”Your love for each other is not untrue or untruthful, but you have to work on it, to truly maximized it”. The fact was that I had no clue how a marriage was suppose to work. I was doing my best trying with my own wisdom and understanding to have a good marriage, but all I really knew was how a marriage was not suppose to be. I had seen enough of that growing up. The Lord said:”I am going to show you what I meant for a marriage to be like, not what the world tells you marriage is, but A Godly Marriage.”. I did not know what a marriage was and my Father, the God of Israel, began to teach and show me and it was great and sometimes it was a painful and hard reality check.
God, my Father; the God Abraham, Isaac and Jacob began with explaining the purposes of marriage (1,2,3). Then He showed me the commandments (4,5,6), the statutes (7,8,9) and ordinances (10-16) of A Godly Marriage. Then He showed me the human side of handling these precepts (17-22) and finally the Lord showed me the trust and wholeness of A Godly Marriage. This was a process. The book took 5 years to complete, but I am still learning and growing in this Godly marriage process. I started with chapter 22 of the book, being:“I will just get a divorce” and the Lord showed me that; what I was looking for was only to be reached by doing it His way, the way of the God of Israel.
Marriage is like a cord of three strands between God, husband and wife; A Godly Marriage covenant. There are many covenants of the Lord written in the Bible, but if you think about it, marriage was the first covenant written about in the Bible in the Genesis 2:24.
I hope that through the reading of this book; A Godly Marriage, you will come to Realize, Recognize and Regard marriage for what the Lord has meant it to be; a permanent enduring covenant between a man and a woman here on earth.
Rev. Remsly L Riley