Hebrews 13:4 Marriage should be honored by all…
A recent poll by Time magazine revealed that twenty-five percent of millennials are likely never to marry and only six percent wanted a traditional marriage. The remaining majority either will choose to live together out of wedlock or remain single. On the other side, only six percent of married couples make it to their 50th anniversary.
Marriage, from a worldly view, is often looked at as a social construct rather than a God-ordained institution. As a Christ-follower though, marriage is the bedrock for social stability and spiritual growth. Within the partnership of another and Christ the center, one learns more effectively how to relate, work, and enjoy the richness of life from God’s perspective.
The Creator Being of the universe designed marriage for our good. However, people, like everything else we touch without God’s knowledge, have the tenancy to pervert and destroy what is good.
When two people grow together and become one, the relationship is a foretaste of the relationship lived out by our Triune God. God is Father-Son-Spirit in community with himself. One God consisting of three persons. The ideal marriage likewise is a threesome community relationship consisting of a man, woman, and God. A threefold cord not easily broken.
I have the privilege of spending time with several men whose marriages are almost as long as I am old. They gladly share their successes and failures learning to become better husbands and fathers with others. The below are some Biblical high-points which they reiterate more often with the younger men in our group. Like most of them admit, they view these items from the rear-view mirror of life which is twenty-twenty vision. They only wish they had learned them much earlier in life.
The most important value which they all agree is being sure Jesus Christ is the center of both husband and wife and family affairs. When HE is the base of operations, there is an agreement in values and life purpose. Everything flows from there.
And just as important, marriage is a life-long commitment. The only way it ends is at death. With that understanding, both sides are in it for the long haul. They realize commitment is a Godly standard as HE has demonstrated over and over again HIS commitment to us. The Bible is loaded with examples where HE is always faithful to HIS people no matter what happens. He is always there restoring the relationship no matter how stupid we may behave. He is there for the long haul.
To stay committed, requires that both sides continue to communicate openly and honestly with each other. In the early years of their marriage, they would hide behind their fears. But as the two grew together, they learn to share and be transparent with each other. To accept the other for what God has designed and help the other person to become what GOD wants with them became their motivation. They want their marriage to be a witness for others how God behaves and acts in doing good work.
Of course, a majority of time communications will be about compromising one’s position for what is best for each other and the whole family. There will be battles, arguments, and heated exchange at times, but knowing each are committed to make the relationship work, will end with both sides reaching a mutual agreement. Both sides will take turns to sacrifice. Both sides will also pursue their goals. The outcome may not be ideal, but they will be glad to work it out together for the mutual benefit of all.
One of the biggest compromises will be about cash – how is the money going to flow. Who earns it, who controls it, and how it is going to be spent? The earlier this is resolved, the quicker and easier the marriage will prosper.
Another compromise will be about children. Again, the more honestly discussed upfront, the less surprises later in the marriage.
Lastly, find a faith community to keep each of you accountable to each other and family. When you live life with others within the faith community, you witness lives being transformed by Jesus Christ and you are constantly reminded what life’s endgame is all about. You and your children develop friendships and have a safe space to socialize with others who accept you and your values.
Marriage is hard work. Yet these men would do it all over again. Their only regret is learning the hard way. They wish someone would have shared what they know now with others. Hopefully, these words may help you in your marriage walk with God and your spouse as you live out your purpose serving God and others in preparation for life now and tomorrow’s new age.
Rooting For You in Christ!
Encourager & Author of e-Books
Encourage a Friend…Share Today’s Message!