Marriage is about HOLINESS, not Happiness

Continued from here.

Before I move on to the next stage of my transformation journey, I’d like to share more of what I have learned about living marriage God’s way. I fear that many couples within the Church have bought into society’s views of marriage, which may account for why the divorce rate among Christians is as high as it is (although see this article that notes a correlation between regular church attendance and a lower divorce rate).

God led me to Gary Thomas’ writings and the epiphany that happiness is not the point of marriage, which is the lie that society tells us. Society portrays marriage as the prince saving the damsel in distress, and then they live happily ever after. But what if the goal of marriage isn’t actually happiness, but holiness?

I heard a fabulous sermon on the radio during a road trip, but I don’t know who to credit. The pastor said these wise words: “If the person you are married to is ‘bad’ enough that Jesus had to die for his or her sins, then your spouse is going to annoy you from time to time.” Oh, the truth in those words … and it works both ways! Marriage yokes us to an imperfect person who … let’s face it … is selfish, just as we, at our cores, are also selfish. The damsel doesn’t want to clean up the prince’s dirty clothes off the floor – she wants him to meet her needs and keep her happy, regardless of her own selfishness.

God has shown my through Gary Thomas’ writings and Alex Kendrick’s and Stephen Kendrick’s book, The Love Dare, that marriage works best when I allow God to transform me into Christ’s image as I put my husband’s needs ahead of my own. Being married actually helps with the sanctification process because I have numerous opportunities to pay forward the unconditional love that God has given me. Because we are yoked together, I am more aware of my husband’s shortcomings than anyone else in the world (just as he is with mine), which puts me in a unique position to pray for him so God can intervene in places that nobody else sees.

I have also learned that God meant it when he said that a married couple is “one flesh.” When I am unconditionally loving to my husband, that love empowers me! Conversely, when I seek to harm my husband, that harm is inflicted upon me. Therefore, because you are one, God only needs one of you to submit to His authority (to actually do what He says to do) to heal your marriage. Because the Holy Spirit is in you while you are one with your spouse, your choice to align yourself with God will change your marriage, regardless of your spouse’s attitude.

Don’t believe me? I dare you to do The Love Dare for 40 days and see what happens.

Continued here.

[Graphic: Cover of Gary Thomas’ book, Sacred Marriage.]

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8 thoughts on “Marriage is about HOLINESS, not Happiness

  1. Grace,
    Thanks for sharing these words. So often I am dwelling on how my husband does not meet my needs. This has opened my eyes to how I can change.

    Like

    • Thanks for commenting, Robin! :0)

      I rewatched Fireproof yesterday, and in the first half of movie, I saw so clearly how both characters were contributing to their marital problems. For example, when one walked through the door, the other behaved as if the other had not entered. It was almost like a contest of who could go the longest without acknowledging the other’s presence … and I used to be that way!! :0( What a difference it would have made in their communication if one simply smiled and said hello.

      When one spouse makes the effort to meet the other’s needs, it changes the entire dynamic of the marriage, and then your needs wind up getting met as well! Since I did the Love Dare to my husband, he took over unloading the dishwasher, despite my never asking him to do so. :0)

      ~ Grace

      Liked by 1 person

  2. […] some slack and extend grace, you will be amazed by how much happier you are. After all, if the purpose of marriage is holiness, these annoying situations provide us with ample opportunity to practice Christlikeness as we […]

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  3. People, including Christians are looking for happiness in all the wrong places. Happiness is in the Lord, but without holiness, no man shall see the Lord. Marriage does not guarantee happiness. It’s a solemn sacred institution that is managed by it’s founder, God. This is a wonderful post. It is very insightful. It reminds us that the portrayal of marriage differently, as the world does, often leads to heartaches and heart-brakes. Thanks for sharing!

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  4. kameilscorner

    Beautiful message! Thank you so much for sharing your wisdom, may God bless you to continue to grow in Him, you have much to share – people need this! ❤

    Like

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