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Faithful

June 4, 2024
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“Husbands, love your wives, as Christ loved the church and gave himself up for her” (Ephesians 5:25, ESV).

 

She took her husband to the waiting room and returned to discuss hospice for him. He was unable to make his own decisions due to his neurological condition. She had stayed by him though two incredibly difficult years of progressive decline. As she was leaving, knowing she is a follower of Christ, I offered her the words of encouragement, “You have been an amazing wife through all of this. You have been faithful, strong, and courageous—everything the Bible would have asked of you.”

 

For some, God has a specific mission in life that does not include marriage. To follow that mission requires sacrifice, courage and constant focus on the One who leads. Those who are true to such a calling will surely receive their reward (Mark 10:28-30).

 

For most of us, God will plant our mission within a marriage relationship.

 

As husbands or wives, we are called to numerous things. Most of all we are called to God and called to be faithful to each other.

 

Faithfulness is not just sacrificial service in the hard times, though some do so in magnificent ways. Faithfulness is not just refusing to leave for a more appealing partner, though a number of Christians fail at that.

 

Faithfulness for most of our lives means holding hands and charging the world together.  Faithful means sacrificing our personal fulfillment so our spouses might be fulfilled. Faithful means discovering God’s mission for us as one, and then living it out together, whatever it costs. Faithful means seeking God together, praying together, enjoying the blessings of life together. Faithful includes raising children together if God so blesses, raising them to become “set aside” for God. Faithful means bearing each other’s burdens, even when they are far too heavy, knowing we can do all things through Christ who gives us strength (Philippians 4:13).

 

Christian marriage is not just two God-believing people trying hard to make it work. Christian marriage is a threesome, two united with each other and united with God, wrapped securely in His arms when the world would tear us apart, lifted by His shoulders when our world is too heavy to bear, joined by His love if life dilutes the emotions we knew when we first fell in love, focused on His life purpose rather than our own—and like the wife above, even serving faithfully as our cherished one fades away, confident in God’s love and knowing that heaven renews all things (1 Thessalonians 4:15-18).

 

In a unique way, faithfulness brings a joy that cannot come from parallel lives of individual fulfillment. I had seen faithfulness in my parents but did not know its profound depth and blessings on the day I married. Thank God, I have learned it well through 50 years with a faithful wife.

 

Dear God,

Thank you so much for a blessed marriage, help us hold onto you and remain faithful forever.

Amen

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