I have learned, through hard experience that “it’s better to be one than it is to be right.” Marriage often begins with two single individuals who think along a similar line of thought. Perhaps you enjoy a similar sport, or the same hobbies, or the same occupation, or have similar personalities, etc. It all starts out with dating, where you advertise all the points of similarities. That leads into courtship, where the dating couple buy into the similarities and make an effort to obtain more similarities. We socialize with each others families and adopt new customs and habits to be more similar. Upon being married for a few years, those who divorce find themselves unable to recognize themselves apart from their spouse, and that scares them. They go through an identity crisis. Whatever happened to me? They ask themselves. And in the search for “me” they separate themselves from their spouse for whatever reasons they can justify, and become single again.
The gospel of Jesus Christ is about being one for the purpose of being “added upon.” The definition of zion is an indicator of this idea of being added upon- one heart and one mind, with no poor among them. The only way we are able to unite is if our heart and mind are one. The natural effects (the bi-product) of one heart and one mind is that we recreate our individual self into something greater and more powerful. But the sacrifice is a self-sacrifice. If we associate our uniqueness with doing your own thing, or If we did not expect to loose our single identity (our individuality) to create a new identity of oneness going into the marriage, then it is quite understandable why people feel suffocated after a few years of marriage and seek divorce.
That point of feeling suffocated some call a mid-life crisis. That being said, those who survive the mid-life crisis aren’t out of the woods yet. If they’ve allowed the melding of the two personalities without resistance and have endured many many years by finding a way to cope with disagreements, when the reasons you have stuck it out are finally gone, then so is the relationship. Couples who stick it out and find ways to cope during the raising of their children, once the children are married and gone, get divorced and are total strangers at the end of the process. Surprisingly, after so many years of being together, they cannot find anything in common.
Being one does not mean “just going along with it.” It’s not about being equal either. One heart and one mind points to what we desire and what we think. Often, women complain about men not showing interest in the things she is interested in, and men return with the same argument. Both are right. But, no one see’s it from the others perspective. The closest we’ll get is a meager participation. It’s hilarious to see women being dragged through Home Depot’s tool coral by her wide-eyed boy-like husband. It’s equally hilarious to see men in a fabric store… or worse, in a woman’s clothing store as their wife coo’s and squeaks at material patterns, textures, and colors. Women typically lean toward the lighting and painting isle in home depot, and men head for the chair or something to sit on in the fabric and clothing store. Both are not being one by doing the externalities. It’s the internality’s that make it one.
As our hearts desire the same and our minds think the same, then can that zion mentality begin to seal up that relationship to have power. The only way that our hearts desire the same thing and our minds think the same is dependent upon your core value system. Yes, women will find excitement in the Home Depot tool coral because they understand what it means to their spouse. And men too will find value in the colors, patterns, and textures because they understand the value of being a queen. That is the very reason why a marriage is only eternal when your core values align with God’s. God values efficient building, using the proper tools to produce greater good. He also values textiles, and clothing, especially as it symbolizes being clothed in light. It’s the alignment with God’s core value system that produces eternal life. That’s why we are invited to read the scriptures to know the mind and will of God. Doing so aligns our values, which aligns our desires and our thoughts, and then our actions become one.
3 Nephi 11:29-30
“29. For verily, verily I say unto you, he that hath the spirit of contention is not of me, but is of the devil, who is the father of contention, and he stirreth up the hearts of men to contend with anger, one with another.
30. Behold, this is not my doctrine, to stir up the hearts of men with anger, one against another; but this is my doctrine, that such things should be done away.”
A couple who wants to find this oneness, can do so by having no contention among them. They align their choices with their values and the the values of God. I know… that seems like a tall order. However, to help you remember this in the heat of the moment, I recommend this short phrase:
“It’s better to be one than it is to be right!”
In any disagreement, we are usually disagreeing because we think we are right! It may very well be that you are right! But, contention is still of the devil and contention dismisses the Holy Ghost, who know’s significantly more than you do. While you might be able to teach your spouse a lesson with your vast knowledge and experience, you have just dismissed the Holy Ghost, who has a vaster knowledge base and greater experience than you do- by a landslide. By choosing to argue, fight, contend, you also choose to learn at your pace (trusting in the arm of flesh), and you forfeit learning at the pace of the Holy Ghost! When we trust in God, we forfeit being right for being one, and then the Holy Ghost can do the heavy lifting.
Being right in an argument will never produce an eternal marriage of power. It will only build up resentment, animosity, covetousness, etc. And it will not matter how right you were. But trusting in God and being one will put the responsibility on the Holy Ghost to lift and to teach, and all will be edified and increased. Such a relationship is powerful, empowers others, and attracts growth and expansion. When trying to create an eternal marriage, obtain power from God, and trying to seal your family yours, “it’s better to be one than it is to be right.”