About a month ago I was asked to perform a marriage rededication, and it got me thinking about the wedding vows and the preparatory meetings with the pastor. With the divorce rate what it is, including my own, I started to consider the process and the possible solutions to ensure couples would clearly understand the promise they say they want to make and the permanency of their decision to marry.
God did reveal something to me, however He enlightened me with the understanding that unless the couple truly seeks a relationship with God there is nothing anyone can do to help them understand and respect the covenant of marriage. Without God at the center of their lives, most couples will either recite the vows in the spirit of tradition and not be committed what they mean, or change the vows to meet their desires.
What God revealed to me is a new perspective on my marriage, one that would take precedence over my commitment to God and to my spouse to stay married until “death do us part”. It is such a compelling Word that couples who grasp it will make their marriage the second highest priority in their lives – second to our personal relationship with God.
Before I knew my wife, God had already arranged this marriage. God entrusted me with His child, who is my wife, to care for her, to respect and honor her, and to regard her as God’s precious child and more important than myself.
For husbands, this means love your wives, just as Christ loved the church. He gave up his life for her.
When we get married God is essentially saying to us, “John, I am putting Sarah into your care. I want you to take care of her for me. She is my child and therefore precious, so I expect you to take good care of her. She belongs to me, and will always belong to me – I just want you to care for her for Me.” And, this works both ways – the husband is a precious child of God, and he is put into the care of the wife.
Obviously, God can take care of our spouse better than we can. However, God likes to work through His children.
As a husband or wife we need to ensure that when our spouse goes Home to Heaven he/she is better off on that day then when he/she was first put into our our lives. We have to ask ourselves, are we contributing to the success of our spouse, and by success I mean becoming more and more of the person God designed us to be. Or, are we destroying that? Will our spouse be closer to God’s design when he/she gets Home, or a wreckage – empty, hurting, unloved, in despair.
What will death mean to our spouse? A release from hell? Or, the next level of being uplifted?
We have to remember, that the child God put into our lives is His. What message are we sending God when we return something of His in worse shape then when we received it? How happy will He be if we return what is His in better shape than when He lent it to us.
For more reading about increasing what God has given us, read the Parable of the Three Servants.