Tag: wife

Marriage – God’s Great Mystery

IMG_1852

As the Scriptures say, “A man leaves his father and mother and is joined to his wife, and the two are united into one.” This is a great mystery, but it is an illustration of the way Christ and the church are one. So again I say, each man must love his wife as he loves himself, and the wife must respect her husband. (Ephesians 5:31-33 NLT)

Paul wrote that the marriage between one man and one woman illustrates how Christ and his church are one.

The flip side is also true. The manner in which Christ relates to his people, and his people relate to him, should be the way a husband and wife interact with each other.

No, I don’t mean the wife worships her husband; but it’s similar in meaning. Respect is the word Paul uses. Respect or reverence. To be in awe of. In awe of what? The husband’s physique? Hardly. No, the wife should be in awe of her husband’s love and sacrifice – the essence of marriage.

Just as the church is in awe of Jesus’ love and sacrifice – the very act which brought us into oneness with God.

I’ll explain it this way. Since the husband is supposed to love his wife as Christ loves the church, he should express that love in similar ways. And as he does, the wife should respond to his love in a way akin to how the church responds to Jesus’ demonstrated love.

For instance, a number of things Jesus says to his church would be appropriate for a husband to declare to his wife. Phrases like:

“My banner over you is love.”

“I’ll never leave you or forsake you.”

“No one can pluck you out of my hand (protective covering).”

“Ask in my name.” (Everything the husband can do, so can the wife with her husband’s name.)

“For your sake I lay down my life.”

“You are my glorious, spotless bride. Where I am, you shall be also.”

Get the idea? And, in response to the husband’s love, the wife would say…

“You’ve told me you’d never leave me or forsake me. Therefore, I will not fear. I will not be afraid.”

“You are my savior (protector, provider, and pursuer).”

Notice this verse:

“For a husband is the head of his wife as Christ is the head of the church. He is the Savior of his body, the church.” (Ephesians 5:23 NLT) Christ is the Savior of his body, therefore the husband is to be the “savior” of his wife.

I realize it’s hard to comprehend. But getting just a glimpse of the truth Paul referred to as a “great mystery” could help the relationship between a husband and wife; and just may help the church understand the Lord’s great love for his body.

After all, Jesus says to his own, “I’m your protector, provider, and pursuer. I’ll never leave you or forsake you. And no one shall tear you from my hand.”

It’s no wonder God hates divorce.

“For I hate divorce!” says the Lord, the God of Israel. “To divorce your wife is to overwhelm her with cruelty,” says the Lord of Heaven’s Armies. “So guard your heart; do not be unfaithful to your wife.” (Malachi 2:16 NLT)

Marriage is God’s example of his extravagant, inexhaustible love for his people. Jesus took it a step farther by demonstrating Father’s love for man, and how a husband and wife should treat each other.

A great mystery, but one the Lord greatly wants us to understand.

The mystery of love and sacrifice – the essence of marriage.

Let’s Resurrect Chivalry

20140611-220753-79673114.jpg

Chivalry. Who uses the word these days?

Chivalry. An honorable and polite way of behaving, especially toward women.

Chivalry. Is it something women want from any man, their man, or no man?

Chivalry. Is it dead? Should it be? Who gets to determine its fate?

What’s wrong with treating women like they’re special? Would it embarrass your wife or girl friend if they were treated as though they were the most delicate and precious person on earth?

I remember reading stories about the brave knights of old. Even while dressed in armor and chain-mail, they treated each lady with dignity and respect. They fought to defend a woman’s honor. They would dismount from their steed just to assist a lady who had dropped her kerchief.

What do “big men” do these days? How “manly” are the young and powerful studs of the twenty first century?

Just how much of a man does it take to coax a young woman into having sex with him? How strong is the man who feels he needs to show his strength by slapping around a woman half his size?

What’s the definition of “man” these days?

Young lady, how could you ever think of yourself as some punk’s property? To be treated as some stud’s conquest. God made you to be more than some perverted soul’s plaything. You were created to be a prince’s lady. A prince; someone who knows the meaning of chivalry.

You are not someone’s inflatable doll to be used up and then thrown back into the closet.

And young man, God designed you to protect your lady! Her reputation, her emotions, and her body. 

Chivalry. I wonder if MTV, Hollywood, or The Young and The Restless ever heard of it?

Chivalry. Would it redefine the modern woman?

Chivalry. Could magazines such as Cosmopolitan and Playboy still survive?

Chivalry. Is anyone interested in it anymore?

I remember hearing stories of men removing their coats and jackets, and laying them on the ground, on top of a mud puddle just to keep a lady from getting her shoes dirty. Now, it seems as though society tries to find ways to throw women into the mud and dirt.

Is it beyond the imagination to dream of a day, of a society, where men act like real men; men who treat women like real ladies? Is it too much to ask?

Well, I can’t control what others think or do, but I can do my part.

Chivalry. It’s one way to show my love and devotion to my lady.

My wife.

My Friend

20140214-192438.jpg

Like you, God has blessed me with a lot of friends. Yes, I enjoy our Facebook friends and the comments we share with each other, but the friends I’m referring to are more than social acquaintances. The friends I’m talking about are people I’m comfortable being with, regardless of whether I’m having a good day or a bad one; or whether their day is good or bad. There’s just something about a good friend.

Of course, there are different degrees of friendship; long time friends, and friends you’ve just met. Then, there are those you just met but seem to have known forever.

Fishing friends, game playing friends, musician friends, work friends, church friends, and friends of the family. Military friends, neighborhood friends, going out to eat friends, and odd friends.

High school friends, trouble making friends, and best friends for ever and ever.

I’m blessed to have friends in every category I mentioned; friends who have been at my side when I needed them most. Friends who, in one way or another, came to my aid when I’ve been down for the count.

Friends don’t always know what to say; but that’s when their actions speak what words can never say.

“You’re important to me. I care what happens to you because I care about you. Nothing is more important to me at this moment, than you.” The unspoken love of a friend speaks volumes with just their presence.

But there’s a friendship like no other. And really, I’m not preaching about God’s friendship. To me, that’s a given; and I try to not take it lightly.

I’m referring to the bond of friendship between a husband and wife. Sure, marriage isn’t always bliss; it’s sometimes messy and frustrating. But aren’t most relationships like that? The reason other friendships don’t have the amount of tough moments like marriage is because you don’t spend the amount of time with normal friends like you do with your spouse.

My wife sees me in my “holy and spiritual moments.” When I’m God’s man of faith and power! But she also knows the other side of me; when I’m frightened and doubting, hurting and envious. Those are intimate times, where knowledge, care, and loyalty are mobilized to carry the day.

She sees me before I wash what hair I have left, and loves me any way. When I’m not sure what to do with the rest of my life, or even on a particular day, she’s at my side encouraging and loving; just like a friend.

My best friend!

We’ve grown up together, and still have some growing to do. Together.

We’ve had 42 years together. Some rotten times, mostly good times. Uncertain times, times with little and times with more. 42 years of history. History which includes funny moments, tearful, heart wrenching experiences, and a lot of time sitting in the living room watching Andy Griffith and Barney Fife.

42 years of knowing each other, not just physically, but intimately. And the thing which blows me away… she’s still my best friend.

Marriage is much more than romance. It’s about a commitment to, not just the marriage vows, but to a deep, lasting, and ever growing friendship.

At least it is to me.

Covenant Wife

20130411-215620.jpg

Covenant Wife

My wife and I have been married over 40 years. Married when we were 18, we have gone through a lot of storms, and a lot of great times. There was a time, 20 years ago, that we were separated and almost split up for good. Why? I had violated my covenant with the wife of my youth!

“…the Lord was witness between you and the wife of your youth, to whom you have been faithless, though she is your companion and your wife by covenant. Did he not make them one, with a portion of the Spirit in their union? And what was the one God seeking? Godly offspring. So guard yourselves in your spirit, and let none of you be faithless to the wife of your youth.” (Malachi 2:14-15 ESV)

“Wife by covenant…” Covenant Wife.

Covenant. A bond stronger than any contract or civil union. It signifies the complete giving and yielding of everything in a person’s life to someone who does the same with them.

Covenant. The most vulnerable, yet strongest place one can be. My greatest fears can be completely overcome with the love of my covenant partner, my wife.

Covenant. Not a trial run; not a convenience. Joined forever.

Covenant. She trusted me with her innocence, I gave her my rib. We are one with each other.

Covenant. Even before we knew God, He knew us and allowed us to find each other, and then find Him. The three-fold cord that cannot be broken – God, my wife, myself. In covenant.

Covenant? Always happy? No. Always easy? No. Always understood? No!

Covenant. An eternal trust, an eternal commitment. The basis, the foundation, for everything good and godly. The open door welcoming and allowing God to work in jars of clay.

Covenant. As sure as the sun will rise in the morning, so certain is the strength of our covenant.

Marriage is a covenant between a man and a woman. A man and woman who give everything they are, were, or ever will be to the other. Until they melt into one.

Covenant. I am grateful, eternally grateful, for the wife of my youth, middle age, and…

Though we both grow old and don’t look like we did those many years ago, that will not affect our covenant.

Our covenant is forever.

Covenant husband.

Covenant wife.

%d bloggers like this: