In marriage, two people live together for many years. Unfortunately, experience has shown that there are many different ways in which married couples live together. While some marriages seem like a foretaste of heaven, others experience a daily hell. On the one hand, marriage can be filled with deep joy, love, and satisfaction, but on the other hand, misery, hardship, and despair. Let us roughly categorize marriages into four different groups.
There are marriages where spouses live in opposition to each other. These are quiet – or sometimes even noisy – theaters of war. Here, there is constant struggle. Love has died. This is where couples live inconsiderately and selfishly, hurting each other. In such relationships, there is always violence, at least psychologically and emotionally. There is always “thick air.” In such marriages, it is hopeless until the two become new people through repentance and salvation. The hopeful message is that such marriages can be reconciled through the grace of God.
There are marriages where couples drift apart. The danger zone in such marriages is great. The rift deepens, estrangement increases, and the rupture point draws near. Everything that the day, job, life, and difficulties bring should draw us not apart from one another but towards one other! If each spouse seeks this, things will go better.
There are marriages where couples live together. That sounds beautiful. These “harmonious” marriages are like two rails that together form the track: they always run parallel. In joy and sorrow, at work and at home, in both society and the world: always nicely side-by-side. It is worth a lot if this togetherness is outwardly shown! But even this is not the ideal marriage. It needs much, much more!
Then there are marriages where the spouses live for each other. That should be the goal and foundation of every Christian marriage. To achieve this, both must make sacrifices. “For each other” means: to see, to do, to fulfill everything from the perspective of “the other.” That means: to love the other, to support them, to help them, to bring them joy, to like seeing them happy. It means to take “the low road,” not to insist on being “right,” to do without, to be silent, to be able to forgive. Above all, it means helping the other get to heaven.
When I mentioned these groups of marriage in a service some time ago, I was approached by a couple afterward: “We have lived through and suffered through the first three groups in our marriage, but now we have arrived at the fourth!”
Whatever your marriage may be, dear reader, believe this: “For with God nothing will be impossible!” He can help you shape your marriage so that it is not a burden but a pleasure and a joy.