It is not good for man to be alone (Genesis 2:18). These words initiated an event that spans time, generations, continents, cultures, races, and looks set to be here forever and ever and ever. We’re talking about marriage, where a man will leave his mother and father and be united with his wife (Matthew 19:5). God the Father of creation established the joining of two, to become one in a way that most of us really don’t understand 100%. Why? Because to begin to understand marriage, we must first understand Love, not just eros or physical intimacy…but Agape “covenant” love…the unconditional type. Eh hem!!!
I was watching a BBC religious programme recently, and a lady made an interesting comment about when she gets to heaven, the question she wants to ask God is; why is the bible not clearer, why is it so difficult to understand? She got a rousing round of applause. At first I frowned, but then I realised why she was finding it so difficult…summed as “I can do all things through Him who strengthens me” (Philippians 4:13).
Marriage is both the greatest, and the most testing relationship on earth…at the same time. Testing because you simply must become less and less like your “single” self, until none of your single self exists anymore. What does this mean? Simply, a husband is a man whose life is about making his wife the greatest woman on the earth. A wife is a woman whose life is about making her husband the greatest man on earth. In other words “husbands love your wife as Christ loves the church” (Ephesians 5:25). You might say, my wife and I are happily married and she doesn’t have to make me the greatest man in the world…emmmmm!!
Marriage can be the greatest relationship in the world, when a man and a woman work in harmony the way God intended. The word reads “one can put a thousand to flight and two ten thousand” (Deuteronomy 32:30). A married man and woman, with the holy spirit and God at the centre can move mountains.
Now, I understand the thinking, we all want the greatness, but you may have 100 legitimate reasons why you think it may not happen in your marriage. Making your wife or husband the greatest person on earth requires vulnerability in the flesh and confidence in the holy spirit. “But surely it is possible to exist without me having to be that vulnerable to the other person”. I understand, but the answer is…no. From the outside looking in, a God centred marriage can look like a vulnerable place to exist. But growing into one flesh through the holy spirit, builds confidence that eliminates all vulnerability. You no longer have to look after your own individual interests in the marriage, you are looking after the interests of the other. In the flesh, illogical yes, however in the spirit…totally logical. So if you find yourself struggling with the concept of looking after you your spouse’s interest over your own, please try relying on the holy spirit and experience a confidence beyond your wildest dreams.
Finally, coexisting, with each having their role, has helped many marriages to survive. We were even given this as advice when planning to get married. Nice advice, but I always questioned whether this is the best God wants from us…just performing separate roles. Today, I’m certain He wants more from marriage. Some of Jesus’s final words were, “I have done these things, but you can do greater” (John 14:12). We can struggle with the concept; by doing greater things, does this make us greater than Jesus? The answer is no, because its the same holy spirit that doing the work through us all. So, what is Jesus communicating? He wants to make us the greatest we can be, through his unconditional love for us. Our relationship with Christ is also referred to as a marriage. So, in the same way we can show unconditional love to our spouse, to make them the greatest they can be also. In turn, making marriage the greatest relationship on earth.