Marriage, Even When...(Day 1)
“For while we were still helpless, at the appointed moment, Christ died for the ungodly. For rarely will someone die for a just person — though for a good person perhaps someone might even dare to die. But God proves His own love for us in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us!”
Romans 5:6-8 HCSB
God speaks to us about marriage in many scriptures. We will explore more scriptures in this devotional. Today, I wanted to really focus on love.
There are so many challenges in marriage. God made us to help each other. That doesn’t mean that life will always seem easier and better because of marriage. But it does mean we will help each other. How? We can help each other by sharpening each other, challenging each other, and learning from each other to be more like Christ.
When I’m less like Jesus Christ in my marriage, my marriage suffers. When I put myself, my needs, my wants ahead of my wife’s, my marriage suffers.
Even when you weren’t living for Jesus, even when you made choices that contradicted what God wants for you, even when you directly offended God, He still did the ultimate thing and came to earth and died for you. Jesus Christ loves you so much. Even when we were/are helpless, unfaithful, lying, selfish, impatient, unforgiving, full of lust, envious, slandering, angry, quarrelsome, prideful, mean, nagging, and just do the opposite of what He asks and wants us to do, He still died for us. He was unselfish and gave His life, His authority, His position, His power, His passion, His faultlessness, and died for us!
So next time your spouse has the A/C in the truck turned up or down too much, next time they give you less than a full stick of gum, next time they don’t show you love in a way that makes you feel loved, next time they don’t touch you, don’t hug you, don’t say something that makes you feel appreciated, say something that hurts you, don’t kiss you, or don’t have sex with you, try to remind yourself of all the things you did against God and how even still, He loves you enough to die for you, to give up His Son, Jesus Christ, who was faultless and sinless to die for you. Next time we try to justify our feelings, our actions, our rights – yes even when the Bible justifies what you think is right, remember that Jesus is who you need to be like.
Jesus Christ is the picture of success. Jesus Christ is the vision of who you should be like. Instead of the next step on the ladder at work, we should seek to build relationships. Instead of seeking fame and fortune, we should seek to be alone. Instead of looking out for ourselves, we should have compassion for our spouse and others around us. Instead of being too busy, we should take the time to see others, care for others, and love others really well.
Next time your spouse does something that is offensive, hurts your feelings, makes you feel alone, misunderstood, and unappreciated, remember that God loves you so much, even when you treat Him so much worse.
If we can take the hardships we face through marriage and learn from them and use them to become more like Christ, to act and react in love, to be angry and not sin, to flee from temptation, we will be successful! Then we will have a good, Godly, enjoyable, enduring, improving, intentional marriage.
Marriage can make us more like Jesus Christ.
“And be kind and compassionate to one another, forgiving one another, just as God also forgave you in Christ.”
Ephesians 4:32 HCSB
I pray that 1 John 4:15 will not only be true with you and Jesus but will also be true in your marriage.
“We love because He first loved us.”
1 John 4:19 HCSB
May your spouse love you because you first loved them!
Intend to Live
God, I pray for my marriage. Would you please be with me as I strive to be more like you? Help me be an example of you to my spouse. Would you please fill me with your Power? Would you give me love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control? Please help us be united. You put us together and we are one. When I’m hurt they are hurt and when they are hurt I’m hurt. Please help us to be best friends, great lovers, and help us to be selfless daily, laying down our agenda, our needs, our feelings, and consider theirs. Help me to slow down, open my eyes, open my ears, see and listen. Help me be slow to anger, slow to speak, quick to listen, and quick to understand. Please make me a better helper for them. Help me to have understanding and compassion! May I be my spouse's greatest admirer, greatest prayer warrior, and most encouraging Christian friend. All for your honor and your glory. May our marriage be a light to the world pointing people to You. In Jesus’ name, Amen