Sunday, February 14, 2016

Perfect Matrimony

Jon and I are not the perfect picture of marriage. Given the title of this blog entry, I'm not even posting a picture of us because I don't want to imply that we are. (Plus I don't have a current picture of the two of us! ;)

Last Friday we spent hours and hours in the car, just the two of us, talking things over. Actually, the "talking" started the day before and we were duking it out during the hours we travelled through horrible holiday traffic. Granted, we duked it out calmly. We both had valid points of view, and we were each determined to come to the other side of our conflict with greater understanding and commitment in our marriage. I'm happy to say that we have a better marriage today than we did at the beginning of that car ride!

Life is busy. Even when our time is taken up with good things, it is easy to sweep aside small issues, small irritations, small misunderstandings. I am reminded, however, that since we are mere sinful humans, we are much better off by communicating rather than assuming the other knows us well enough to just read our thoughts. We have to speak our heart to each other, sharing our joys, our grievances, our hopes and fears. We have to tell the other how we need to be loved, otherwise it's safe to say we will each guess incorrectly.

Jon and I recently won a couple's game played against other leaders and their wives from our church. It was a light, silly game but we won with a perfect score. In a comical way it implied that we know each other pretty well. The truth is, even after over 17 years of marriage, we are still learning and re-learning some basics things in our relationship.

Here's what I came away with after thinking much on the subject of my marriage this weekend:

*I want to know my Savior well. I want to have a deep and abiding relationship with Him, to be consumed by His majesty, to long for Him continually.

*I want to be passionate about what the Lord has done for me. Because of this, I desire my relationship with my husband to be founded on our mutual love and devotion to our God. I want to talk about Him, pray together to Him, draw near together as a couple to Him, and grow together in His grace. I desire that our most prized and obvious commonality be Christ.

*In essence, I pray that my relationship with Jon be founded in our relationship to the Lord. Our marriage is meant to have that spiritual reality; it is the heartbeat of our life together.

*As a result of that, I pray that we would display the beautiful and profound relationship between Christ and His bride, the church, to our children and to a watching world.

*This is God's intention for us, and herein we will find the greatest fulfillment of blessing in the gift of marriage. Without this foundational, spiritual element in our relationship, our marriage will be shallow at best.

There is a mystery that is profound, and I don't pretend to understand it well. It's just that to me... rather mystifying. But here's the thing: God created marriage to be a picture of a greater reality, that is, the relationship between Christ and the church. My marriage is to reflect Christ's love for His bride, the church, the the church's submission of to Christ. This is profound!

Ephesians 5:22-33 (italics mine)

 "Wives, submit to your own husbands, as to the Lord. For the husband is the head of the wife even as Christ is the head of the church, his body, and is himself its Savior. Now as the church submits to Christ, so also wives should submit in everything to their husbands.

Husbands, love your wives, as Christ loved the church and gave himself up for her, that he might sanctify her, having cleansed her by the washing of water with the word, so that he might present the church to himself in splendor, without spot or wrinkle or any such thing, that she might be holy and without blemish. In the same way husbands should love their wives as their own bodies. He who loves his wife loves himself. For no one ever hated his own flesh, but nourishes and cherishes it, just as Christ does the church, because we are members of his body. “Therefore a man shall leave his father and mother and hold fast to his wife, and the two shall become one flesh.” This mystery is profound, and I am saying that it refers to Christ and the church. However, let each one of you love his wife as himself, and let the wife see that she respects her husband.

What a sobering responsibility and privilege! Jon and I get to portray this relationship to the world, and to our ever-watchful children. And though I know we will do this very imperfectly, the significance of this responsibility motivates me all the more to model this. I want to reflect the relationship between Christ and the church. And I want to enjoy the love and unity that God intended in my marriage.

Jon and I are joint heirs of the grace of life, each responsible to live out our God-given marital roles for the glory of God and for our good. Wow.

The prefect marriage will not be found among mankind. Jon and I are not perfect, but we have a perfect model. And we have the indwelling Holy Spirit to help us and empower us to live according to God's design.



I love you so much. Thank you for your sacrificial, tender love. Thank you for cherishing our marriage and for demonstrating in practical ways your commitment to me. Thank you for fighting for me, for drawing me to yourself when I'm more comfortable slipping off, for faithfully leading me, and relentlessly loving me. I don't deserve such love.



  1. This post was so impacting, it gave me a fuller understanding why the Lord chose you to maintaim this blog! Be encourged, dear sister, as I certainly am by this days blog content! I read it to my beloved, and at the very las paragraph and subscript to Jon, I just cried my way through....miss you guys!

    1. Thank you, Rebecca! Miss you too! I hope you are both well...


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