Tuesday, February 14, 2012

Dear Lindsay

This Saturday marks an important moment in DFH history. The first among us is getting married!

I wrote out this devotion for one of Lindsay's bridal showers and I thought it had some ideas worth sharing! A lot of them come from "The Meaning of Marriage" by Tim Keller. Hope you enjoy it!

In general, our culture has a terrible view of marriage. It's seen as outdated, boring, disposable and often not worth the effort to save.  We are surrounded by peers who cannot fathom the idea of a relationship where living together is not a precursor to marriage. Our society has more examples than it could ever need of couples who couldn't make the relationship work because they could not put the "we" above the "me", but this isn't the example of marriage we are meant to have.

God has a better plan for marriage. A better way. A better example.

In Ephesians, Paul tells wives to submit to their husbands and tells husbands to love their wives as Christ loved the church. In God's example of marriage, we are called, not to selfishness, but to sacrifice.  We are not to live for ourselves but for the other.

I know you have all heard this verse many times, but try to think about the words.
Love is patient, kind, it does not envy or boast, it is not proud, rude or self-seeking.

None of these words are about preservation of self, not of them are about making us feel better.

If this is real love, how many celebrity marriages can you think of that show this example of love, how many movies portray this kind of sacrifice and grace.  They don't. You know why? Because, Satan hates marriage, because it is an example of Jesus' relationship with the church.  He wants us to keep thinking that the root of marriage is all about self.  But Christ didn't come down to earth for himself, Christ came and laid down his life, so that we might have life… what a great example of selflessness, what a tremendous example of grace.

Lindsay, this Saturday is a marking point, another step in the journey that you and Steve have already started on, a chance to see, live and experience the wonders of marriage that God has prepared for the two of you.  You will have disagreements, you will have bad days, you will going through trying times, but you will also have the amazing privilege of being an example to others of the grace we have been given through Jesus.

Marriage isn't supposed to be about us. It's meant to be part of our testimony to those around us. Lindsay, through your relationship with Steve, I pray that you are each able to show grace, as Christ showers his grace upon the church, not only for the sake of each other, but also, so that others might now the grace of Jesus through you.

1 comment:

  1. Thank you for this! I memorized 1 Corinthians 13:4-7 as a young girl, and I think everyone should use that, and the Fruit of the Spirit to monitor relationships before marriage, and use as a standard after marriage. Those are what we aim for. Selflessness and patience will come to you when you have a spirit-filled marriage. Love and respect will flow naturally.

    Gratefulness is a biggie, too. I think that gratitude is the best cure for a selfish spirit.

    Love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, self-control. Etch these words onto your heart and pull them out during times of tiredness, conflict, or impatience. These are the key to a lasting marriage, and they come from a spirit-filled relationship with the Lord.

    Bless you, Lindsay and Steve, and bless you, Andalasia ladies!