Our traditional marriage vows have remained largely unchanged for decades, perhaps even longer. Of course, there are some of us who opt to create our own vows to read at the ceremony, but do we really consider them with any more regard than we would new year’s resolutions? When it comes to our marriage vows, we would be wise to regard them with the importance they merit. Also, our vows can serve a practical purpose in the daily life of the marriage.
In the same manner that we should set realistic and practical goals for ourselves, we should also set realistic and practical vows. To love, honor and obey are vague and perhaps even questionable aspects of traditional marriage vows. Consideration of marriage vows should ideally be done together. A new couple would do well to identify their mutual long term goals when considering what their vows will be.
A marriage can easily slip into a set of opposing goals with the couple only meeting at the end of everyday to find they no longer have much in common aside from bills and children. It is easier to envision a bright, promising future together at the beginning than it is in the middle of the marriage. The vows can then become more than mere ceremony. They can become the structural foundation upon which the marriage will be built upon. This is the intended purpose of traditional vows.
Traditional vows are a beautifully spoken testimony of the love and devotion the couple has for each other. Beyond the ceremony they tend to become no more than fluff for the video. Once a couple has decided upon the vows that outline their desired direction in life, it is a good idea to cement them in some way. Perhaps have them drawn up and framed and hung in the home. Or a plaque can be made for the wall. The vows then become family policy and a constant reminder of the course the couple chose for a long and happy life together.