“Two are better than one…”
That’s the conclusion of the wisest man who ever lived – King Solomon in Ecclesiastes 4:9.
However, when it comes to marriage and the “two becoming one,” there are many who would disagree.
Marriage is an unnecessary and extraneous step in a relationship, critics argue. It’s more of a hindrance than a help. It’s a shackle not a treasure.
After thirty-four years of marriage, I say the critics are wrong.
Though marriage isn’t always easy, as John and I’ve embraced the miraculous yet difficult task of becoming one, we are discovering the sweet gift of marriage God always intended.
For it isn’t good for a man to be alone. Or a woman, for that matter.
Doing Life Together
Years ago, I found this poem as I was writing my wedding gift book, With This Ring: Promises to Keep. It spoke deeply to me as a 36-year-old wife and mother. But after thirty-four years of marriage, it’s becoming more real and precious as John and I daily experience the sweet truth of the words penned by Michael C. Blumenthal.
You are holding up a ceiling
with both arms. It is very heavy,
but you must hold it up, or else
it will fall down on you. Your arms
are tired, terribly tired,
and, as the day goes on, it feels
as if either your arms or the ceiling
will soon collapse.
something wonderful happens:
a man or a woman,
walks into the room
and holds their arms up
to the ceiling beside you.
So you finally get
to take down your arms.
You feel the relief of respite,
the blood flowing back
to your fingers and arms
And when your partner’s arms tire,
you hold up your own
to relieve him again.
And it can go on like this
for many years
without the house falling.
To My Forever Love
During this week of Valentine’s Day, I’ve been thinking a lot about the wonderful gift of my husband.
I’m sorry to say that early in our marriage, I was oblivious to the beauty of who John is. I spent far more time trying to change my husband than enjoying the treasure I’d been given.
Yet through it all, John kept loving me – even at my worst. Accepting me even as I was rejecting him. Choosing to love me over and over, despite my unloveliness.
Gratefully, God refused to my insistent request that He change my husband and chose to work on me instead. Challenging my critical attitude and awful pride – a toxic combination that would have destroyed our love had I been married to a lesser man.
The faithfulness of God, and the commitment we’d made at the altar, held us together during that rough patch. Proving once again the words of King Solomon:
Though one may be overpowered,
two can defend themselves.
A cord of three strands is not quickly broken.
If you’ve said “I do” and pledged your love to another, don’t miss the gift God has entrusted to you. Don’t pull back in judgment and disappointment. Step forward and embrace the gift. Allow God to change your heart and teach you how to love.
If you’ve never been married, or have gone through the heartbreak of widowhood or divorce ..never forget, you are betrothed to the Lover of Your Soul.
Jesus is already standing beside you, helping you bear the load. You are not alone. Don’t be discouraged. Don’t be dismayed. Instead, take a deep breath and link arms with Him.
For two are definitely better than one.
I’d love to hear from you…what part of marriage means the most to you?