Perhaps you are married, perhaps you are engaged, or perhaps you are single with the hope to someday find the person you will spend your God given days with.
I am married.
I was recently given the book Sacred Marriage by Gary Thomas. Not because my marriage is falling apart or because we are unhappy. We love the Lord and each other deeply. If asked to rank our marriage on a scale of 1-10, 10 begin fantastically awesome, I would give it a 9. Or so I thought until I read the first question posed on the cover of this book...
What if God designed marriage to make us holy more than to make us happy?
The question has since been running through my head.
Holiness as opposed to happiness? Hmm...
What exactly does God say about marriage and our individual responsibilities as man and woman in this covenant relationship?
Gary answers it in short (on the back). Your marriage is more than a sacred covenant with another person. It is a spiritual discipline to help you know God better, trust him more fully, and love him more dearly.
And here I thought that if we read and discussed His word together, had smiles on our faces, and kissed each other goodnight we were in the right with how God intended things to be. I mean, that's what the world says. And yet, as I type those very words I am brought to His word...
8 “For my thoughts are not your thoughts,
neither are your ways my ways,”
declares the LORD.
9 “As the heavens are higher than the earth,
so are my ways higher than your ways
and my thoughts than your thoughts.
I continually ask myself if what I am doing throughout my day is glorifying to God. Zoning in on the topic of my marriage for Gods glory had slipped my mind. Actually, and honestly, it had never even crossed my mind.
I do things for the big guy to show my love for him; to make him happy (and vice versa). Which in turn (I thought) makes me happy, therefore leaving us with a happy marriage. The end.
And then I read Gary's opening question and got slapped upside the head.
Not that God has anything against happiness, or that happiness and holiness are by nature mutually exclusive, but looking at marriage through the lens of holiness begins to put an entirely new perspective on it.
I have barely made a dent in this book, but felt called to jump the wagon and recommend it to you.
May you be blessed in finding depth with God and the plan of holiness He has made for your marriage, or marriage to be.