Being a Certain Age Won't Make You Ready For Marriage
You know those articles that make claims like, "According to Science: Best Age To Get Married And Avoid Divorce" or "Best Age To Get Married"?
Don't listen to them.
Now, their studies might actually have some credence, sure. Marrying a little later in life could help avoid issues down the road... but the key word here is could. They tout to readers that only by this certain age range, have you learned enough about yourself and developed enough sense of independence to be the best partner for someone else (hogwash - more on that another time). But what if you waited and waited, putting off relationships and engagement until you reached the ripe age of 30 when you could have started your happily-ever-after years before with no problems at all?
The thing is, guys, don't let me or any 'scientific article' on the internets tell you when the best age for marriage is. Because the best age for marriage is when God places the right person in your life. This may happen when you're in high school, college, years into a career... heck, your ring bearer and flower girl might even tie the knot later in life! Thirty may very well be the exact right age for you to start your life with a wonderful human being that God placed there.
When we got married at 23, we had a lot to learn - you bet! But we were sure of our relationship, and we shared values, morals, and faith. The last (almost) 3 years have been the best of my life, and I am so grateful I never listened to some silly article that told me that my marriage would be stronger and I'd be better equipped if I waited seven more years. We have grown more in love with each day, laughed the hardest we've ever laughed, yet endured trials, tears, and disappointments. Marriage is a vow. No matter how much one another changes over time (and believe me, you will change here and there) this person you chose at age 17, 34, or 52, will be the person you continue to choose each day. Sometimes, you may even find yourselves changing in unison, because of changes in life stages and circumstances (a move, a new baby, new jobs). Hold yourselves to the moral standards you set from the start. Stay by their side, grow with them, accept and love their changes, and always encourage each other to live life according to God's Word.
Though these "ideal age" articles are well-meaning, and are written to help people avoid making mistakes, remember that mistakes can be made at every age and stage of life. In fact mistakes will be made all throughout our lives. The problem with articles like that are the "what ifs" and "could help" mentalities. There are a lot of "what ifs" and "could helps" in life, but if we constantly lived by such fears or expectations we wouldn't truly live or experience anything of substance at all. Marriage is a leap of faith and trust no matter what age you are.
Now, I'm a big believer in marrying young, and I'm not afraid to voice that here (I say this, because I'll probably post about that another time)... but I also believe you should only be marrying young when you've found the person God intended for you. I was blessed to have met Tom in college, but others may not meet that person for years - and that is perfectly okay and just as awesome! Some people are friends for years before time finally reveals to them that their future spouse has been in front of them all along (more on that subject: stop looking for love). I believe that God's timing is everything, and there is always purpose in how and when spouses meet, date, and marry. So friends, pray for those you meet. Pray for your future spouse. Pray for your spouse who you have the privilege of waking up to each day, and pray your marriage. Do not let the world tell you that 28-32 is the best way to ensure your happiness... because I promise you, it's God who will ensure your happiness. No matter what age you are.