We made God the foundation of our marriage
Shirley and her husband, who have been married for seven years, were among the 32 couples who took part in the Wedding of Weddings ceremony at the Universal Church in Johannesburg on Thursday, 12 October.
It was after they’d had their fair share of challenges that Shirley came to the Universal Church in 2015.
"We registered our marriage at the Home Affairs in 2009 after we dated for four years. We had a child the same year we were married. Our marriage however, started showing cracks after my husband started drinking alcohol and using drugs. He also cheated on me. He used all his salary to feed his addiction and left us without food to eat. He sometimes spent three days away from home. I felt lonely and unloved because he did not spend much time with me. We always fought when he came back home," said Shirley.
Their marriage worsened and the same year she came to the church, her husband ordered Shirley to move out of their home because he had found a girlfriend.
"He told me his girlfriend wanted to move in with him and I had to leave. I was so hurt when I left our home with our child. I then dated another man while we were still separated and that pushed him to file for divorce," said Shirley.
Her estranged husband was then invited to the Universal Church.
" Our divorce was still pending when Adam started attending services. He stopped drinking and using drugs. He then invited me to go to church with him. I was encouraged also to commit my life to God when I saw how his life had changed," she said.
Last year Shirley and Adam decided to give their marriage a second chance. They took part in the Therapy of Love services on Thursdays and asked God to be the foundation in their marriage.
"In these meetings I learned that I needed to build a strong relationship with God in order for me to have a healthy relationship with my husband.
I also understood that it was wrong for me to date another man while I was still married to my husband. I understood my role as a wife and I started respecting my husband. He in turn gave me the love and quality time I needed," said Shirley.
When the Wedding of Weddings was announced in the church, Shirley and Adam saw it as an opportunity for them to take their marriage to the altar of God.
"We wanted to make God the foundation of our marriage and we decided to renew our vows at the Wedding of Weddings. I now have the confidence and assurance that God is the centre of our marriage, and that there is no challenge that will ever come between us and break our union. Now God is the One holding and keeping us together" said Shirley.