By Mike and Karen Friday
Is marriage a mystery?
Mike, my husband and pastor, recently taught a series, My Happy Family. It included one of the most powerful messages I’ve ever heard on marriage.
And unless you have the marriage thing totally figured out—which is doubtful. I hope my favorite takeaways from the series and some of my own thoughts provide you with helpful insight.
Takeaway #1. Look for someone who is running to God.
If you’ve never been married or you’re single again, then make this your vow. As Mike stated, “Ladies, don’t just be attracted to a man’s outward appearance. But be attracted to a man in love with God.”
Here’s how our love story started. Mike and I met in a college Sociology class, Marriage and Family. But a few days before our meeting, Mike was attending a Christian event on campus. He heard me share my account of searching for real love that’s only found in a real God. My salvation story.
So, he knew I was running to God. And that was his desire. We both loved God and we loved each other. As Mike put it, “If we’re both running to God then let’s run together. In that direction.”
Center your love story in marriage around your salvation story in Christ.
Takeaway #2. My spouse can’t fully complete me.
Mike reiterated what we all soon discover. People make lousy gods. Mike fails me. I fail him. If we’re looking for a human to be our everything, we’ll be disappointed.
There are biblical ways we add fulfillment to our relationship. But our wholeness comes from God. Jesus. Completes. Me.
Takeaway #3. Bring glory to God and multiply a godly heritage.
In the beginning, God unveiled His glory when He introduced humanity into existence. “Then God said, ‘Let us make human beings in our image, to be like us…’” Genesis 1:26 NLT.
After creating male and female, God blessed them and told them to be fruitful and fill the earth. (See Genesis 1:28.) Mike warned how we often put a period here. Just have kids and that’s it. Period.
Yet, Scripture’s clear we should raise children in the ways of God. Show them how to run to God like their mom and dad are running to Him.
Takeaway #4. Have the same blueprint.
Proverbs 24:3 establishes the master’s plan, “By wisdom a house is built…” (NIV).
- Who’s your master.
- Determine your mission.
This is wise advice if you’re single. A lot of people you date are their own master. Mike advised, “That’s a dangerous situation.” If God is the Lord of your life, search for someone with the same mission.
And for those of us married, it’s not too late. The daily pursuit of the Lord as our master will provide a strong foundation for our marriage.
Takeaway #5. Model God’s love to the world.
The series message, The One Thing Every Family Must Have. Mike reveals love as the key ingredient.
“Falling in love only takes a heartbeat. Staying in love takes a commitment.” Here, Mike teaches us a powerful truth. Love is not a feeling. Instead, it’s an action.
In John 13, Christ teaches His disciples about love. “So now I am giving you a new commandment: Love each other. Just as I have loved you, you should love each other. Your love for one another will prove to the world that you are my disciples” John 13:34-35 NLT.
Love is the key in our marriage, as parents, with extended family, in the church, and in the world as disciples of Christ. Mike stated, “Jesus doesn’t command us to like our enemies because like is an emotional feeling.” You can’t command an emotion. Christ commanded us to love our enemies. To love each other. Because love is a verb.
Obedience to God will always be for our good and for His glory.
We’re commanded to give to others the love that Christ has given to us.
Takeaway #6. Mirror the image of God.
“Our marriages are to reflect Who God is—His nature and His character” (Mike). As we look in Scripture at the roles of husbands and wives, we often miss the overall picture of marriage.
The same spiritual warfare Adam and Eve experienced in the Garden, is the same warfare we deal with in life and in marriage. But the renewed spiritual peace the cross of Calvary provided between God and people, is the same peace we have access to between husband and wife.
Yes, we have an enemy. But it’s not our spouse. Instead, our enemy is satan.
So how do we mirror God? Ephesians 5 encourages us to be imitators of God and to walk in love. In this imitating, we find specific commands for the husband and wife in this and other passages of the Bible.
Here’s the graphic from Mike’s message.
Marriage is the reflection of Christ and His bride—the church. Still, it’s overwhelming to consider our human frailty in meeting these roles.
Husbands and wives often fall short. Our only hope is Christ in us.
To our new subscribers, welcome. It’s great to have you. And thanks to each of you who shared last week’s post, Purpose in Our Pain, Dr. Michelle Bengston’s guest article. The winner of Michelle’s new book, Hope Prevails…is Kristi Rhoten. Congratulations, Kristi!
Pictured is my lovely assistant for the drawing, Debbie. She’s a friend and member of our ladies leadership team and agreed to help with the drawing at our church meeting last night.
© 2016 by Karen Friday, All rights reserved
September 1, 2016 at 9:39 am | Uncategorized