I love being a minister, and there are few things more exciting than the privilege of performing weddings. Unfortunately there are few responsibilities of ministry that are more frightening. It is for that reason that I have two rules in place.
1. I don’t marry anyone I haven’t counseled and I reserve the right to refuse when the counseling is over.
2. I will NEVER, EVER marry anyone with a prenuptial agreement.
You can call me conceited, judgmental, whatever you want, I don’t care. You don’t have to stand before God and answer for why you married those people, I do. The pre-nup thing hasn’t come up for me yet, but this much I know. If you don’t have the trust and the love of the other party and you don’t value that more than your stuff, it probably isn’t going to work. You’re entering a life-time commitment with an exit strategy in place.
So far this doesn’t look too much like a praise but it is. You see today my wife Dawn and I are married 23 years and for us it’s 23 years on our way to eternity. We do have an exit strategy, one of us in a box and the other in mourning. I know that sounds a little morbid, but that ’til death do us part thing, God meant that. I love my wife and I plan on loving her until they close the box on me and with God’s help I will keep that commitment.
I know this sounds a little harsh, and I know this might offend some of my readers and I certainly don’t mean it to. We live in a broken world and sometimes things break, even marriages. If you’ve been through a divorce this is not a slam on you. We love you and pray God’s blessing upon you. I write this for the other married folks, maybe those who are teetering on the edge in hopes of pulling them back. It’s for the ones who have not yet chosen a mate, in hopes that something written here will help you choose well.
When Dawn and I first started dating and even into our marriage everything seemed perfect and wonderful. We were young and in love. Then life started to happen and things got tough. We experienced losses, struggles, tough jobs, financiall struggles, kids, schedules, conflicts and there were times in all of that when we might have felt like throwing up our hands and saying this is just too hard. Praise God, that’s not what happened, instead we pulled together and pulled each other through. There were times where it was very hard, but at the end of the day we’ve faced the last 23 years side by side and there is no one but Jesus I would rather have by my side to face anything.
Marriage isn’t easy and I am convinced it is targeted by Satan like almost nothing else, after all the marriage relationship is a “type” for Christ’s relationship with the church. It’s a symbol of the love of the one who told His people, “never will I leave you, never will I forsake you.” Trials give us a choice, we can let them tear us apart or we can allow them to forge a bond that nothing but death can break. Dawn and I have chosen the latter, and with God’s help we’re sticking to it. What’s your choice?
I want to close by saying I love you Dawn, Happy Anniversary.
Bible Reading Guide
An important part of following God is knowing what He wants and a great way to know what He wants is to read His Word. Follow this plan and you will finish reading the Bible in a year.
Joshua 11-12; Mark 8; Psalm 127
You can also download your own chart here.