Devotional

In sharp contrast with our culture, the Bible teaches that the essence of marriage is a sacrificial commitment to the good of the other. That means that love is more fundamentally action than emotion.” – Tim Keller.

In John chapter 17, we read how Jesus prayed in the Garden of Gethsemane just hours before His death. It becomes evident that unity was on Jesus heart. We see His desire is for His people to have visible unity.  If you’ve ever wondered why unity is so important to Jesus, we find the answer in verse 22-23. “I have given them the glory you gave me, so they may be one as we are one. 23 I am in them and you are in me. May they experience such perfect unity that the world will know that you sent me and that you love them as much as you love me.” 

Deep, true unity is unmistakable and irreplaceable in a healthy marriage. Often a portion of the wedding ceremony includes two candles, which are joined together to light a third candle, thus symbolizing the unity of marriage. God’s word says “the two are united into one.” (Genesis 2:24). One flesh. Combined. Unified.

God created us for deeper unity with our spouses than any other human. While pursuing unity in marriage can be difficult at times, it makes perfect sense. Pursuing unity forces us as couples to think like your spouse, to put your spouse’s needs before your own and to have otherwise impossible conversations with each other. Unity creates a lasting bond. Conversely, things can be pretty rowdy where there’s no unity. And there will never be lack of fires to put out, or crises to address where unity is lacking.

Marriage is far beyond cohabiting. It means to be physically, spiritually, financially, sexually, materially united. And that’s what most married couples want. I don’t know anybody who wants to be less unified with their spouse. We want unity. It is in our best interest. Our circumstances can be bleak, the ground can be shaking underneath our feet, but if you and your spouse are unified and your marriage is healthy, you will survive every storm. That type of confidence is built on having God at the absolute center of our lives because when two people are on a mission for God it creates a synergy between them. 

Psalm 133:1-3 talks about unity: “How wonderful and pleasant it is when brothers live together in harmony. For harmony is as precious as the anointing oil that was poured over Aaron’s head… Harmony is as refreshing as the dew from Mount Hermon that falls on the mountains of Zion. And there the Lord has pronounced his blessing, even life everlasting.”  

The question is not whether or not you want unity in your marriage, but rather, are you willing to do what it takes to build it? My prayer is that you and your spouse be unified on every level. We pray that as you are, your joy and love will multiply.

Discussion Questions: 

  1. What does “unity” mean to you in marriage/relationships? 
  2. What are some ways that you can start building unity in your marriage/relationships this week?