Be Still Know
Ephesians 5:32 NLT
This is a great mystery, but it is an illustration of the way Christ and the church are one.
Paul doesn’t stand alone when he declares that marriage is a mystery! However, what he meant and what I’m alluding to are different in emphasis. Every one of us who has married will have been confronted with the challenge of mystery in the sense we just plain don’t understand what is going on at times. For Paul, the mystery is the link he makes between human marriage and the relationship between Christ and the Church. In this the Church is the bride who awaits the arrival of the bridegroom, which signifies the consummation of all things.
In his relationship with us, God chooses to stay close and believe in the longevity of the relationship, in spite of our waywardness. His heart is big enough to hold us. We are invited to view family as a challenge most certainly, yet not one in which my spouse is expected to make changes to accommodate my fault lines. Rather, it is an opportunity to explore how each might become a servant and resource to the other. The model is the relationship God extends towards us. It is perhaps this relationship Paul invites us to reflect upon as we consider how we are to practise our marriage vows day by day.
Consider the love that God extends towards you. At the same time reflect upon the esteem, veneration and appreciation you have towards God. It is these elements that encompass family. Love is described in the scripture as believing, hoping for, and enduring all things, for love can never end. Hence, keeping love alive for the other is an essential responsibility. Where you lose respect, so love will slowly ebb away; respect for yourself, for your spouse, and even for God. Considering how God loves us continually, warts and all, might provide some insight into how we might love.
QUESTION: In what other ways can marriage reflect the relationship between Christ and the Church?
PRAYER: Lord, your love to us is faithful, enduring, patient and kind. Help me love with this kind of love.