Contributors: Brittany Albrecht and Jordan Albrecht / April 2016
For our final two articles about dating, we interviewed two married couples, one younger and one older, to see what they had to say about dating as well as marriage. The common factor – a life-saving faith in Christ as their foundation.
The interview issued this week is with Jordan and Brittany Albrecht. This interview was conducted and prepared by the Editors
How long did you date?
We dated approximately four years. The first two years were portions of our sophomore through senior years of high school. Since we attended Immanuel, in Eau Claire, we saw each other quite frequently because we both lived on campus. After graduation we both returned home–Heron Lake, Minnesota, and Muskego, Wisconsin (a distance of 450 miles). Once college started, we were only three and a half hours apart, as opposed to seven.
What lessons did you learn from dating that helped you in your marriage?
We learned communication is key. Whether we were face-to-face or hundreds of miles apart, we knew that the more we communicated, the better.
We also learned that we needed to keep Christ at the center of our relationship. Going to Immanuel definitely was a blessing. Not only were we surrounded by Christian friends, but Christian professors and staff, who were constant reminders that if we kept Christ the focus, we could get through anything.
We also learned to appreciate the blessings of parents and grandparents. We may not have known it at the time, but as we were dating, their advice and Christian example played a key part in making us who we are today. We couldn’t be more thankful for them.
What preparatory steps did you take before marriage, did you find them valuable?
We took several pre-marital classes with Pastor Albrecht in Okabena, MN. We read the book Love and Respect by Dr. Emerson Eggerichs. (If you haven’t read the book, we highly recommend it.) It’s a great book that explained many things that we, as 20 year-olds, hadn’t experienced. It was also great to spend time with a Pastor and hear the advice and discuss things together.
What conversations do you think are important to be had before getting married? How did you know that you wanted to get married? Questions you should ask each other about how the marriage will work logistically?
There were many things we discussed before we got engaged. Where would we live? Where would we work? What expenses would we have? Could we afford everything? What about kids? While these were all things that we discussed and prayed about, ultimately, we knew that the foundation of our relationship was built on Christ and, with that, we knew that He would provide and be by our side, no matter what we faced.
“He who did not spare His own Son but gave Him up for us all, how will he not also with him graciously give us all things?” -Romans 8:28
What were some of the most difficult things you overcame while dating? How does that compare to marriage?
Communicating at a distance was the biggest challenge in our relationship. Our schedules didn’t always match up. Conversations were sometimes few and far between.
We’ve been married for almost six years now, and communication is still something we can always work on. Our schedules still don’t match up, and with two kids, it’s easy to forget to have discussions with each other.
While the difficulties we faced when dating may have been more trivial than things we have faced while married, communicating our thoughts and feelings is still just as important.
How did you resist sexual temptation?
Growing up in a Christian household, going to a Christian day school and high school, we knew that intimacy was something to be saved for marriage. What we underestimated was the power of the devil. He knows how to manipulate your thoughts and rationalize your actions. Set ground rules and try not to put yourselves in situations where you might be especially tempted. The only way to overcome that is to pray about it and ask the Lord to help.
“No temptation has overtaken you that is not common to man. God is faithful, and he will not let you be tempted beyond your ability, but with the temptation he will also provide the way of escape, that you may be able to endure it. -1 Corinthians 10:13
“Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation. The old has passed away; behold, the new has come.” -2 Corinthians 5:17