Whether you are single or married, divorced or widowed, God encourages you when it comes to your view of married life. First, consider this:
- Singles can have too much or too little desire for marriage.
- The divorced can feel that without marriage they now have one less problem.
- The widowed often lack satisfaction and fulfillment because it was tied too heavily to their spouse in place of Christ.
So where is the encouragement? Jesus says about marriage, “What God has joined together, let no one separate” (Matthew 19:6).
Can you picture God putting a puzzle together?
Do you see him fumbling with the pieces, confused where exactly they fit in place? Do you see him losing a few pieces of the puzzle that slide off the table without him noticing? They bounce under the sofa so that when he thinks he’s done with the puzzle there are a few gaps and he doesn’t know how to fill them? Do you see him walking away in frustration and saying, “I’ll never figure this out!”?
No, not God. Puzzles don’t overwhelm him and neither does marriage. Although the Bible calls marriage “a profound mystery” (Ephesians 5:32).
But we are the ones mystified, not God. Marriage is a mystery because our natural, worldly understanding of marriage prevents us from appreciating it or enjoying it. Like a puzzle, the more we work on our view of marriage, the more it clarifies for us. And the more it clarifies, the more we see God in it.
- As a single, why do you want or not want to get married? God’s design for marriage relieves pressure that others in this world, including yourself, unnecessarily pile on.
- If you have an ex and a former marriage, how can you live more peacefully with the hurts and disappointments? God’s design for marriage resolves broken relationships at the cross of Jesus Christ.
- Losing a spouse to death is a trauma nobody wants to face, but when you do, a clear understanding of marriage will free you and fill you.
- And being married, well, it is work, it is meant to take things away from you, and you are not married to the person who stood next to you and danced with you and said “I will” on your wedding day—because people change over the years (and, yes, in some ways people don’t change even in ways they should).
So the Bible pictures God as the one putting the marriage puzzle together—even a difficult marriage that a struggling husband and wife can’t seem to put together just right or put back together after it has broken into pieces.
And what God puts together he promises to keep together. Every marriage is a design of God that he is committed to bless and keep and strengthen.
So whether you are single or married, encourage young people to choose a spouse carefully. Pray for your married friends. Show extra support to the victims of a broken home. If you are married, look to God for strength to cement your marriage bond and he will make it a more intimate and more undivided union.
PRAYER: Dear God, you know the solution to the mystery of marriage. I ask that my view of marriage align more closely with your design for it, that my faith grows to appreciate it in ways that free me, fulfill me and give me hope for the future. Amen.
FURTHER MEDITATION: Read Ephesians 5:21-33. What does marriage have to do with Jesus Christ?