“To get the full value of joy, you must have someone to divide it with.” – Mark Twain
Life as you no doubt have learned, is full of imperfect things and imperfect people. Wives are not perfect. Neither are husbands. We all have our imperfections. But in an unforgettable marriage, the husband and wife have learned to accept the imperfections in each other. Over time, they have stopped trying to make each other in their own mold and have learned to celebrate their differences. Or in other words, they have learned to love each other for who they really are. That was the purpose and the motivation behind the Unforgettable Love Story series we finished this week.
If you missed any part of this series, I encourage to go back and listen to any you missed. You can find them at northstar.cc. I would like to summarize some points we covered in the series.
First, is that love is an unconditional commitment, not a fleeting, fickle feeling. When you hear couples say that they are “falling out of love,” I always wonder if they really grasp the meaning or implications of true love. Love isn’t a fairy tale feeling, but a commitment, a choice each of us make. Love isn’t a fairy tale story with a happy ending. Love is a story without end. 1 Corinthians 13:7 (NLT) reminds us that, “Love never gives up, never loses faith, is always hopeful, and endures through every circumstance.” Marriage needs commitment to each other and to God to flourish and deepen.
Second, every wife needs love and every husband needs respect. There will be times when your spouse is doing something that is unlovable or disrespectful. Loving them and showing respect during those times is not easy, but it is important that we do it anyway. God gives us His best when we’re at our worst, and He calls us to do that for each other in marriage. People usually need love most when they “deserve” love least. Ephesians 5:33 says, “However, let each one of you love his wife as himself, and let the wife see that she respects her husband.”
Third, your spouse’s needs have to come before your own. In each of us there is some level of selfishness. Let’s be honest. So we tend to look at every relationship, including marriage, as an avenue to getting our needs met. But as we have seen in this series, marriage is laying down your own rights for those of our spouse. This requires mutual submission and serving your spouse even when they’re not inclined to reciprocate. Mutual submission is modeled by how Jesus served us and even died for us when we were undeserving. “…submitting to one another out of reverence for Christ.” (Ephesians 5:21)
And fourth, a marriage takes three. The third member of a marriage is God Himself. He created marriage not just to be a man and a woman, but rather, a man and a woman in a growing relationship with each other and with God. The more you love God, the more capacity you will have to love each other. Marriages that put God at the center of their marriage are happier than those that don’t. They focus on God for the source of their happiness rather than their spouse. Deuteronomy 31:8 “It is the Lord who goes before you. He will be with you; he will not leave you or forsake you. Do not fear or be dismayed.”
My hope and prayer is that this series will enrich your marriage/relationships and your walk with God in some way.
- What do you view as the most important theme for the Unforgettable Love Story series?
- What do you want the legacy of your marriage to be?
- What is the one thing you plan to do or not do as a result of this series?
- How can God be a bigger part of the marriage/relationship going forward?