Posted by: davidbowerkingwood | May 18, 2018

Christian Marriage, Part 2

Marriage as a Mission Field

I met my future wife when she was 16 and I was 18 years old; we were both at a performance of the opera Faust presented by the Metropolitan Opera on tour in Houston, Texas on May 1, 1951. We were instantly attracted to each other and started developing a relationship that resulted in our marriage eighteen months later.  At the time I had not attended church for years due to complications in my family life but I was a born-again Christian who did love the Lord Jesus Christ as my Savior.

Having been initially raised in a Southern Baptist Church, I had found the Lord as my Savior as a young boy and been baptized when I was 12 years old. Two years later my childhood was to hit some rough patches which resulted in my not darkening the doors of a church for several years leading up to my discovery of my wife-to-be.

While I knew Jesus as my Savior and a few Bible stories, I knew almost nothing about serious Bible doctrine and was definitely a babe in Christ! My future wife was a good church girl and after I met her we would sometimes go to her church where I got to know some of the people she knew. It never even occurred to me to think about her salvation or whether or not she was born-again.

It was only after we were married that she came to know the Lord as her personal Savior; I have described this event in Once Upon a Time We Moved Back to Texas. God’s hand of grace had moved in her life and she turned to the Lord for her deliverance from sin. What is rather sad for me is that during this whole process I didn’t have a clue what was happening to her; I was little more than an ignorant bystander watching it all happen; I was just a babe in Christ starting to grow up just a little bit.

What Does the Bible Say on This?

Suppose a born-again Christian is married to one who is not; then what? The Bible does not leave us in doubt about that point; in 1 Corinthians 7:10-16 it is written:

10 To the married I give this command (not I, but the Lord): A wife must not separate from her husband. 11 But if she does, she must remain unmarried or else be reconciled to her husband. And a husband must not divorce his wife.

12 To the rest I say this (I, not the Lord): If any brother has a wife who is not a believer and she is willing to live with him, he must not divorce her. 13 And if a woman has a husband who is not a believer and he is willing to live with her, she must not divorce him. 14 For the unbelieving husband has been sanctified through his wife, and the unbelieving wife has been sanctified through her believing husband. Otherwise your children would be unclean, but as it is, they are holy.

15 But if the unbeliever leaves, let it be so. The brother or the sister is not bound in such circumstances; God has called us to live in peace.16 How do you know, wife, whether you will save your husband? Or, how do you know, husband, whether you will save your wife?

There is nothing I can add to that, the Bible is clear on what God expects.

Letting This all Play out in Life

Any marriage is the joining together of two unique individuals; each with their own dreams, agenda’s, aspirations and priorities. A dangerous pitfall in marriage is to think of the other person as an instrument by which your dreams and fantasies will be fulfilled. I wrote briefly on this in “The Painted Veil that Hides Reality.”

“The heart of the movie can possibly be reduced to one line spoken by Dr. Walter Fane to his wife Kitty, “It was silly of us to look for qualities in each other that we never had.” To some degree, each had come into their marriage with preconceived notions of how it would be and how the other would respond. This, of course, is the never ending challenge to young couples entering into marriage; separating fantasy from reality.”

The ideal would be entering into the marriage relationship with a full understanding of the facts of life regarding the other’s individuality and that will never happen unless there is careful instruction before marriage. The next best alternative would be for the young couple to recognize this fact of life, accept it and make peace with it as quickly as possible. It is critical to any marriage that the “silliness” of fantasy fulfillment be removed from any marriage as quickly as possible.

My wife and I got married when she was 17 and I was 19; we had a lot of growing up left to do and had decided to do it together. By God’s grace, love and mercy we have been able to sort things out and make our marriage work now for over 65 years. The best part about the whole thing for us is the great joy we share just being together; we have 65 years of life together and can share the memories of a lifetime. May God be praised!

“25 Husbands, love your wives, even as Christ also loved the church, and gave himself for it”  KJV


Responses

  1. This is the hardest part of my life and still challenges me. Thank you for sharing

    John

    >

    Liked by 1 person

    • It is such a comfort to know how much God loves us and watches over us in times of challenge!

      Like


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