As a girl, I would sit in the pew and imagine it. Flowers and ribbons hung down the rows. Family and friends gathered close. Standing at the altar before God, I would promise forever to the love of my life. And at the ripe age of 8, my heart could hardly stand to wait for it.
But alas, years of waiting and broken hearts would come to pass and the day would finally come when I would walk that aisle. My future father-in-law would officiate the vows and the promise was sealed with a ring that can not be broken. With the release of butterflies, we proclaimed the newness of our life together. Throwing off the old and becoming one-flesh before our most holy God.
When I stood at that altar, I made a vow. A promise to love and cherish until DEATH. A promise for better OR WORSE. In sickness or health. There were no contingencies. No “as long as you don’t…”. Just a promise. Forever. I never said…I promise to love you as long as it works out for me As long as you don’t gain too much weight or too many stretch marks As long as you don’t spend too much money As long as you make me happy As long as you love me exactly the way I expect you to As long as you can perform to suit my needs As long as it feels good From this day until, well…whenever I just get tired of you.
I imagine that if wedding vows included these words, people would have a hard time saying them and actually going through with it. It certainly wouldn’t make for a pretty wall hanging. But the truth is, most of us do go into this journey with some of those thoughts. We plan to protect our own interests. We marry as a result of lustful “feelings” that we call love. We marry for happiness.
And this is where it all goes wrong. Because even the best marriage will never really bring bliss and happiness. This is a lie that we have built our lives on. A lie that dies daily when he forgets to take out the trash or she overspends on that new outfit. It’s a lie that traps us into destruction. Because God says…
Marriage exists to display the merciful covenant-keeping love of Christ and the faithfulness of His bride. ~John Piper, This Momentary Marriage
Marriage exists for the sole purpose of sticking it out. You see, if marriage is the perfect picture of Christ’s love for the church, then the enemy stands to gain greatly by it’s demise. If I refuse to fight for my marriage, he wins. If I buy the lie that it’s about my happiness, he takes down another family. But, if I can recognize that satan attacks Christ by destroying marriages, then it’s no longer about my rights or my feelings. It’s no longer about what he did or what he didn’t do. It’s about the glory due to my God.
Should I fight for my marriage? It’s more than a question, it’s a command. I must stand and fight. Not allowing the enemy to claim one more family. For what God put together, let NO MAN separate.
And if I promised forever, that means today just as much as it meant April 14, 2001. Even IF he… Even if I… For better OR worse. In sickness AND in health. Till death do we part. Will you stand and fight? Because one praying spouse can save a family and one saved family can change a desperate world.
Pray for each other so that you may be healed. The prayer of a righteous person is powerful and effective. James 5:16
Want to know how to fight for your marriage? You will find a few thoughts here.
There is also a Facebook group where you can find support.
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