Choosing To Stay Married—And In Love

Read: Proverbs 5:18

May your fountain be blessed, and may you rejoice in the wife of your youth.

Mystery author Agatha Christie, who was married to an archeologist, once said, “An archaeologist is the best husband a woman can have; the older she gets, the more interested he is in her.” Solomon said essentially the same thing in Proverb 5:18: “Enjoy the wife you married as a young man.” (The Message)

But how many times have you seen it the other way?  You see a middle-aged man with a beautiful young woman, and you realize that he’s a guy who came to a point in his life, perhaps a mid-life crisis, where he dumped his faithful, but aging wife, for a bombshell secretary.  Or the wife who has been married for 30 years and suddenly announces to her confounded and clueless husband, “I’m leaving you.  I’m not happy and haven’t been for a long time.  I don’t love you, and as a matter of fact, I don’t think I ever really did love you.  So we’re through!”

Too many people have come to see the experience of marriage as unendurable, like the German poet Heinrich Heine, who bequeathed his entire estate to his widow on the condition she remarry, “so,” in his words, “at least one other man will regret my death.” That’s a far too common view of the most sacred and satisfying union of all, marriage.

What we need is a renewed view of marriage—a Biblical view. You see, God’s plan isn’t for marriage to be something that has to be endured over time; he has designed it so that love and satisfaction will increasingly flourish between you and your spouse as you grow old. That new and higher view will require you, for one, to see through one of Satan’s ugliest deceptions, the myth of the greener grass, which fosters the lie that you cannot be satisfied with the spouse of your youth. For another, God’s view also requires you to choose satisfaction and decide to love instead of leaving it the changing tides of your emotion at the moment.  Finally, God’s view means that despite the intervening years, the graying (or loss) of our hair, and the reconfiguring of our body weight, you must understand that your spouse is still that same person you fell in love with and married.

A New York executive search firm, in a study of 1365 corporate vice presidents, discovered that 87% were still married to their one and only spouse and that 92% were raised in two-parent families. The evidence is overwhelming that the family is the strength and foundation of society.  (Zig Ziglar in Homemade, March 1989)

Strengthen your family ties and nurture your marriage over the course
of your life, and you will enhance your opportunity
to find happiness and be successful.

Your Assignment, Should You Choose To Accept It:

Make a list of five character qualities that attracted you to your spouse.  This week, find an opportunity to express to your spouse your appreciation for those qualities—one at a time, and in a natural and genuine way.

Please note: I reserve the right to delete comments that are offensive or off-topic.

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