Last week My Love and I read another chapter in the book Sacred Marriage together. I had just started studying about love the day before and was surprisingly not in a chipper mood when he brought out the book. Something always happens when we take that time to communicate though. We actually communicate.
The concept behind the book is that a Christian marriage is the one thing most like the relationship between Christ and the church. I have read that many times in Ephesians but for some reason this book finally spelled it out for us both very clearly. If our marriage is supposed to most reflect God's love for the Body of Christ, we aren't taking it very seriously. Marriage seems to be the first place where the world tells us it is OK to demand our own way. God says to love selflessly and we listen to the lie that we can find God's love in another person. From that breeds expectations and resentment. Wouldn't it be amazing if the world could look at any Christian marriage and ask what is it about that couple that is different? You guessed it. It would look like a pair that BOTH died to self. And when our heads are both bowed low, what does the world see? GOD! That would be ideal. But clearly that isn't always easy or the case.
In all seriousness, sometimes it can be easier to show love to the slow moving cashier than to the person who is the other half of your whole. It didn't take long after studying love that God asked me to start loving more at home. You may be thinking, "But you don't know my situation. My wife/husband doesn't surrender his life to the Lord". Then wouldn't being an example of God's love to the world be most appropriately acted out in your marriage? Did Christ expect anything from the church before dying for them?
That is my personal challenge this week. To die to self more completely in my marriage. That doesn't mean become a door mat. It just means loving without conditions. Sounds directly opposed to the way the world chooses to love. I'm seeing a trend here.