I think God must love weddings. Consider this: Jesus performed His first miracle at a wedding by turning water into wine (see John 2:1-11). At the beginning of history, the first man wed the first woman when God presented Eve to Adam (see Genesis 2:21-24). And at the end of history, there will be the wedding feast of the Lamb when Christ and His bride, the Church, are joined together forever (see Revelation 19:6-9).
Marriage is one of the means at God's disposal to make us more like Him.
Read Genesis 2:21-24. If God loves weddings, just imagine His feelings toward marriage. For a wedding is only a beginning, but the marriage that follows lasts a lifetime. God instituted marriage before there was sin in the world. It was part of His good and perfect plan for humanity, meant to reflect His relationship to His Church (see Ephesians 5:32).
A creative force, marriage produces families, homes, and ultimately whole societies. If you want to see where a culture is heading, just look to its marital relationships. Are husbands and wives committed to their relationship? Or is divorce all too common? Is there an effort to redefine marriage? Is God's original design for families being twisted and destroyed? A culture that treats marriage like this cannot last.
Ultimately, marriage is one of the means at God's disposal to make us more like Him. It is God's intention that husbands and wives grow more like Christ as they grow closer to one another. Of course, this isn't easy; there are challenges in every marriage. That's why our wedding vows talk about richer and poorer, sickness and health. Add to the mix our own sinfulness, and you'll understand why I say that my marriage has only lasted because of the grace of God—and the grace of my wife.
I believe there are three foundational stones to a fulfilling relationship: selflessness, forgiveness, and conversation. You'll find that in any marriage, any problem—or any potential problem—has at its source a lack of one of these three things.
In the following days, we'll take a look at each of these to reveal how to have a marriage crafted according to God's design—a masterpiece that brings beauty and strength to the world and glory to God.
Prayer: Father, thank You for the beauty of marriage. As I consider the foundational stones to a fulfilling relationship, empower me to put them into practice for the good of my family and community. I pray in the name of Jesus. Amen.
"Marriage should be honored by all" (Hebrews 13:4).