Sacred Marriage

by Gary Thomas

What if God designed marriage to make us holy, more than to make us happy?

In this day and age it seems many marry to try and complete that happiness circle. Getting a great job and having a career, getting a home and nice car, marrying the man or woman of your dreams (and soon maybe kids).  Newlyweds are SO in love, oblivious to any faults their new spouse may have and life is good.

Soon though, the  honeymoon period  ends, and then what?

Marriage is hard, and takes work and unfortunately all too often people just give up. The world tells us  that if you don’t get along with your spouse, then you “owe” it to yourself to divorce and find someone with whom you are more compatible. With this view of marriage, there is no real sense of partnership!!  If marriage is going  great, then keep with it, but if it gets to be too much, then it’s time to bail.

 In his book Sacred Marriage, Gary Thomas discusses how we should REALLY be looking at marriage. It is not a book about how to improve or save your marriage, but rather building up ones relationship with Christ. It will make you look at the plank in your own eye and not in your spouses.

Marriage, like everything in life, is a spiritual discipline.  A means by which God draws us closer to Himself. Every aspect of marriage—the good, bad, or indifferent—is a way for us to learn more about the nature of God and his relationship with us.

 The way we love our spouse, the way we argue with our spouse, the way we forgive and intimately interact with our spouse are all means God uses to change us, mold us, make us more like Him.

In Sacred Marriage, compatibility is a non-issue. Any two people in a marriage are incompatible in the sense that they have two different personalities, no two people are exactly alike, and newsflash, no matter whom you marry there will always arise issues.  The challenge of marriage, any marriage, is finding a way to appreciate the similarities and respect and accept the differences.

 Our marriage is our witness to the world!!! We can preach all we want, but if we don’t offer forgiveness to the one we choose to love, that our words are empty. If we love our spouse, even when, especially when they don’t act how we’d like,(and I’m NOT talking about infidelity, abuse etc…that is for another discussion) there is no more powerful witness to the impact of God’s love on our life.

I really HIGHLY recommend this book for newly engaged couples, newlyweds, and couples whom have been married for years! It helped me to gain a better understanding of marriage when I first read it 5 years ago!

 We all desperately need to know that God’s intentions for our marriages are so much grander than merely providing an enjoyable companion. God offers us something far greater: holiness, not just happiness. He offers us a marriage, through all its struggles and pain, which can teach us how the deepest longings of our hearts can finally be satisfied in the embrace of Christ, and bring ultimate glory to him!