Let marriage be held in honor among all . . . Hebrews 13:4a
To hold marriage in honor means to treat it as precious. And it is! God created it to give us an earthly picture of what His love is like. Divine affection was such a priority that He instituted this earthly sacrament to make sure we get the message.
But if the experience of marriage has been, or is for you, deeply flawed, then you will have trouble thinking it honorable. You will have an aversion to the topic and won’t even want to read this. There are good reasons why.
- If your parents had a bad marriage, home was not a place you felt at peace. You lived on pins and needles and covered your ears to drown out the fights.
- Or maybe it is your marriage that brings you pain of the deepest kind. You’re treated as God would never treat you. Daily, you pick up your battered soul and bring it to God with a big ‘why?’
- Perhaps it is you who has failed in the marriage. You were unfaithful and have seen your infidelity worn on the face of your spouse. The word marriage reminds you, even years later, of your failure and you live with a crippling sense of regret.
Marriage is, for most people, a dirty word. How can I make such an outrageous claim? By the statistics of divorce. Through a lifetime of experiences in ministry where I’ve heard stories of people’s lives. Most marriages are not happy. So this begs the question? How does a married person with scars get to a place where they consider marriage precious? Is it possible?
Here’s how. Your earthly spouse doesn’t get to ultimately define what marriage is. On earth, it has been perverted, pain has been inflicted, but Jesus is your bridegroom. He is standing with open arms to welcome you to Perfect Love. This Bridegroom shed His blood to pledge His love in covenant. There isn’t a moment when He regrets it or when He withholds His love. There isn’t a scar that His words won’t heal. There isn’t a refusal that His welcoming embrace won’t erase. Though our outward man feels the effects from the wounds of others, our inner man dines with Jesus and grows stronger each day.
If God’s love is evident in your marriage today, thank Him. It is a work of grace. But if God’s love is not evident in your home, know that your Bridegroom offers love, right now, when your spouse won’t give it. If you’re languishing in matrimony, remember – you’re married to another. Savor Him and live. The wedding feast is being prepared and His love heals all scars, starting now.
You heal the sores of earth, Jesus. Amen