“It’s us, not you and me…
I would be honoured if you would let me love you through the rest of your life.
Through every insecurity and every argument”
This was from a kindle romantic book that I was reading. It was a ‘typical’ story in one sense – of two liking each other, getting together, one running away the other one following then roles being reversed etc etc. Then many pages later in the days of their lives, it came to the point where he says this to her…
Isn’t this reality? We all have our ‘demons to slay’ (once again quoting the book) and insecurities to face… The insecurities lead us to argue and to try to make excuses to pull away from the very person we long to love. Our insecurities make us search high and low for excuses outside and make them fit as appropriate valid reasons. We long to justify our fears with cover ups, with superficial reasons – career choice, age, family approval, appearances, the size of the wallet etc etc.
However, maturity is realising the insecurities and recognising a relationship is hard work. It means letting go of our selfishness, our egos, our acceptance by others around us.. It requires humility to accept the fact that neither of us are perfect and not all will be hunky dory but through the thorns the roses will blossom and the fragrance and beauty of it can be enjoyed and cherished. Thorns are the trials and compromises and letting go of ego… If the thorns take the shape of abuse in a relationship – bullying, name calling, belittling which eventually turn into physical violence and sexual abuse should not and need not be tolerated. As long as one person remains with such a person, the power and control problem is fed into and the abuser gets roped in deeper and deeper into this mechanism.
As far as the thorns that are not in the shape of abuse are concerned… once we get past the thorns on each branch of life is when when we enjoy the rose at the end.
Being a believer and firmly grasping the principles of marriage – whether already in a marriage or when choosing a partner – helps us to be able to stick through the thorns and reap the benefits of the rose.
God has made it clear that each person has been created in His image and likeness. Whether male or female, He has created them both in His image and likeness… No one is better than the other but we are all equal in His eyes, we are all precious. God created Adam and made it clear that it was not good for human to be alone. A comparable helper was brought to Adam and Adam simply burst out in poetry, in love upon seeing this woman that came out of man. God brought a COMPARABLE helper, not of lesser importance but for both to become ONE flesh…
It means the coming together of two broken individuals to love one another and complement one another as “ONE”. “Through every insecurity and every argument” is possible if these broken individuals have their feet planted on the solid rock.
A cord of three strands is not quickly broken – Ecclesiastes 4:12
Likewise a marriage where the couple who are each individually rooted in God have now become one cannot be easily broken. Yes leading up to a marriage, a couple who are forming and norming a relationship will have ups and downs and coming close and pulling apart stages. They haven’t become one in flesh and they haven’t yet been “joined” together by God. So don’t despair if your relationship prior to marriage doesn’t seem steady – we need to give and take remembering that all of us are broken and need restoration, that indeed we all are a work in progress as long as we live on earth.
However, in a marriage the two have become one and if God is in the centre, then the thorns may prick but will not damage and the couple will delight in the rose… the beautiful aroma of the marriage.
In a marriage ordained by God, the woman knows that God asks her to be submissive, not to nag her husband and order him about. Is it then of any wonder that in the biblical examples of a couple being brought about, that Eve was brought to Adam, Rebekah to Isaac and Ruth to Boaz. The husband is the head of the wife (all this is bearing in mind that both are comparable helpers but the final decision is left to the husband). Would an employer go to the employee to interview him and select or is it the other way around? These godly women were brought to their godly husbands to be .. the godly men where in tune with God’s will and thus were ready to embrace them with love as their wives. They took it to be the heads. We read that through his marriage, Isaac was healed from mourning after his mum.
The Bible indeed says that the woman should submit to the husband as the church submits to Christ. For this to take place, the husband should realise that he is a part of the ‘church’ and he should be submitting to Christ before he can expect his wife to submit to him. It would be hypocritical for him to ‘demand’ her to be submissive and even more hypocritical for the church to lord it over the wife to submit to such a husband. God is a God of free will – He doesn’t force us but gives us choice.. Likewise godly authority will do the same.. It is hypocritical to demand unquestioned obedience from another when we ourselves don’t obey God in the first place.
However, the bar is set up high for the husband too… Husband love your wife ….
just as Christ loved the church and gave himself up for her to make her holy, cleansing her by the washing with water through the word, and to present her to himself as a radiant church, without stain or wrinkle or any other blemish, but holy and blameless. In this same way, husbands ought to love their wives as their own bodies. He who loves his wife loves himself – Ephesians 5:26-28
The thorns are the trials, the humbling of our prides, the recognition of our insecurities and shortcomings… Yet a godly marriage will go past the wounds of the thorns and heal just the same way Christ makes us holy and cleanses us. Is your marriage (or for those who are single and in a relationship, your prospective marriage) able to survive the thorns and spread the beautiful fragrance of the rose? Are people who see your relationship able to be carried away by the beauty of the rose and not deterred by the prickly thorns?
For we are to God the aroma of Christ among those who are being saved and those who are perishing – 2 Corinthians 2:15
Is your marriage a witness unto the love of Christ to His church? Is it the aroma of Christ among those who are being saved and those who are perishing?