As a Pastor, I often have the privilege of interacting with people in the most vulnerable moments of their lives: birth, death, surgery, disaster, marriage, divorce, etc. In these moments together with people I am always deeply humbled to have a front row seat to what is happening. By God’s grace, it is always my hope to help lessen the load of grief in prayer or multiply the joy shared in those moments.
Over the years, I have had the privilege of walking alongside a number of people who were struggling in their marriage. The details of their experiences are different, but the arc of the story is often similar: after some underlying problems were left unaddressed, __________ happened (affair, pornography addiction, physical altercation, something awful said, etc.), and now the couple is considering abandoning the relationship.
When couples are faced with these circumstances, they often think they have two choices:
- Remain married in a marriage they hate.
- Get divorced and start over.
At one level, this makes sense. In the theater of much of human experience, these are the two most common options. Be miserable in your marriage, or have hope in a new one. Given these options, it is not surprising what many people would choose to do.
The problem with these options, however, are their failure to take into account God’s resurrection power. If God can:
- Part the Red Sea
- Give sight to the blind
- Raise Jesus from the dead
- Forgive us from ALL our sins
AND, if this same God is at work in me . . .
THEN, we should have hope for a third option:
3) The marriage you want with the person you committed to.
This third options is only possible through the miracle of life change. It requires God’s grace made manifest in both forgiveness and empowerment to Christ-like behavior. Jesus said of marriage, “What therefore God has joined together, let not man separate. (Matthew 19:6)” Given this kind of commitment, followers of Jesus Christ who are married have a lifetime’s worth of incentive to see this third option built into a reality.
Gary Thomas says of marriage, “A good marriage isn’t something you find; it’s something you make, and you have to keep on making it. Just as importantly (and herein lies the hope), you can also begin remaking it at any stage.”
This Sunday at Wildwood Community Church, we will be talking about making (or remaking) your marriage into the marriage you want with the person you committed to (when you said “I do.”)
Looking forward to seeing you this Sunday at 8:30, 9:45, or 11:00 as we will be wrapping up our “Relationship Status” series. See you then!