When I found out Francis Chan was coming out with a book on marriage, co - written with his wife, I was super excited (if I have not yet mentioned, Crazy Love is my FAVORITE book ever). You and Me Forever found its way under our tree for Christmas and my husband and I have been reading through it together. This past Friday we launched it with our life group, which was really, really exciting, like I could not fall asleep the other night because I was really excited. All that being said, marriage has been on my mind lately and I have been fervently praying for yours.
Marriage can be easily be entered with rose colored glasses until the faults and let downs come, which allows you to choose to comfort with grace and love or to tear down with anger. It has the opportunity to enhance your life or ruin you. It can be a blessing or feel like a curse or nothing at all. It can be full of adventure and fun or brimming with frustration and self. The choice is entirely up to the parties involved. How much work one is willing to give and how much grace there is to offer.
One of my favorite songs on marriage is Dancing in the Minefields by Andrew Peterson, perhaps because the lyrics are similar to our story or maybe it is the way he so eloquently weaves Christ and salvation in, too - whatever the reason, it is beautiful. Have a listen.
"I do" are the two most famous last words
The beginning of the end
But to lose your life for another I've heard
Is a good place to begin
'Cause the only way to find your life
Is to lay your own life down
And I believe it's an easy price
For the life that we have found
Marriage is about laying yourself down for another. Day after day. Not just to sleep next to or keep a warm spot on the right side of the bed. It is a constant laying down of your self. Laying down your pride and entitlement and putting on humility and servitude. Marriage is a means to transform you in to the likeness of Christ. It is meant to be an example of how Christ loves the church (Ephesians 5:25).
Praying that you would seek Christ first and in turn would see the transformation that occurs in your marriage. Praying that Christ would be the head of your marriage and that unity and love would abound more and more. Praying that you would have eyes to see your spouse as an opportunity to serve God and that it would change the way you approach situations. Praying that your marriage would draw you closer to God and that it would have a ripple effect on those around you, impacting the eternity of others for God's glory.
Praying that you would see hope in a seemingly hopeless marriage. Praying that you would seek wise counsel where needed and that love would cover a multitude of sin and unforgiveness. Praying that your eyes would be opened to your short comings and failures and that your spouse would meet you where you are at and that God would fill you to overflowing with ways to overcome them.
Here's to reflecting Christ in your marriage and building unity.