We fall in love and then get married. Happiness is hoped for and dreams are cast, but we soon discover how difficult it can be when two imperfect people come together to try and create something as idealistic as marriage bliss. As a result, the hopes and dreams once longed for fall away to dismay for far too many. Yet, this doesn’t have to be. Marriage can be and is designed to be something powerful, purposeful and divine:
Purpose: Marriage is not without purpose and we are not without purpose within a marriage. However, for the longest time, my wife and I didn’t realize our purpose and our marriage’s purpose. However, as we grew in our faith, this purpose was revealed. For I am to love her sacrificially like Christ loves the church. This means I am not the most important person in the marriage. And she is not there simply to meet my needs and make me happy. Likewise, she is to respect the accountability God holds me to as the husband of our marriage and to help me fulfill this role well. When we come together in this way – I loving her sacrificially and she helping me respectively, our physical, emotional and spiritual purposes unite and bloom.
Promotion: Marriage is to promote God’s agenda, serve His purposes, reflect His glory and make us more holy. Sadly, I did not know the divine purpose of marriage, or my role in it early on. As a result, my marriage wasn’t all it could be, or all God intended it to be. As I surrendered my life to Christ, He began working and healing my marriage by working and healing me. Like a ripple in water expands outward, by sanctifying my faith and personal relationship with Him, He expands impact in my marriage, which impacts His church, which impacts our communities.
Pruning: As mentioned earlier, marriage isn’t necessarily designed to make us happy as much as it is to make us more holy. Putting two imperfect people together in an imperfect world and expected perfection isn’t realistic, but we like to place these unrealistic ideals on ourselves and our marriage. Rather, when we begin to see how God uses two imperfect people who are committed to Him and to each other, our faith and reliance on Him grows, and we begin the see the miraculous ways our marriage helps to prune our egos, selfishness, pride and vanity.
Application: “Dirty To Divine”
Dancing takes practice – lots of practice. But like dancing, if we keep at it, we get better and go from stepping on toes to something beautiful that attracts others. This is like marriage. It can begin a bit rough, but over time, when surrendered to Christ, the dance gets better and we begin to understand our roles and purposes in marriage better. As a result, it begins to blossom into something beautiful and divine that attracts others, glorifies God, and promotes His purposes.