When you hear the words “you will never fulfill or fully satisfy me” come out of your future spouse’s mouth, you might be a little weary of what the next 70 years might look like. That’s the conversation we had very early in our dating relationship. Never has that been more true and wonderful than in marriage. We have found that it’s easier to love when there isn’t an expectation of reciprocity. It’s also a lot easier to forgive when you understand that we as humans will never measure up.
Let us set the record straight - we are not marriage experts. We haven’t even been married a year. But, that statement is so sweet to us because it constantly reminds us of the grace we receive from Jesus and the total reliance on Him to be our satisfaction.
God doesn’t give us marriage (or other relationships) to make us happy and content in this world. He gives us marriage to be an example of His love for His bride, the church.
We have a sister who is walking through an impossibly hard situation in her marriage. You know what we see from her every day? A love so strong for her husband that she continues to fight for him through the “worse” and not just in the “better.” The world tells her to run because it’s messy and doesn’t make for the perfect instagram photos. She chooses to be still because God tells her to love him, especially because he is lost. Isn’t that the picture of marriage God wants us to portray? That we would love fiercely regardless of the satisfaction we receive?
You see, marriage isn’t about us. In fact, nothing in this life is about us. It’s about love - a love so great that He literally sacrificed EVERYTHING for us. So, this is our prayer for ourselves and our church: that we would be a church that loves others even when they can give us nothing in return.
“Beloved, let us love one another, for love is from God, and whoever loves has been born of God and knows God. Anyone who does not love does not know God, because God is love. In this the love of God was made manifest among us, that God sent his only Son into the world, so that we might live through him. In this is love, not that we have loved God but that he loved us and sent his Son to be the propitiation for our sins. Beloved, if God so loved us, we also ought to love one another. No one has ever seen God; if we love one another, God abides in us and his love is perfected in us.” - 1 John 4:7-12