10 May 2012 ~ 0 Comments

Taking Another Look at Marriage

This brief article is at the request of Dustin Dozier, our Student Pastor, for a writing project he is doing.

Rethink Marriage

To consider this assignment (writing something on “rethink marriage”) I first looked at the definition of rethink. I knew the “re” part meant to do again. When I looked up “think” in my Webster’s, I saw a definition that is longer than this post will probably be. But I did find some key words that might help. Words and phrases like these are significant as we apply them to marriage:

–  to reflect on; to ponder;

–  to have as an anticipation, to anticipate

–  imagine

–  envision

Let’s take all of these and do them again. We will call that rethinking.

We live in a day and time when the thinking of marriage has eroded. It has shifted. The world without the Creator of this institution has gradually but significantly moved the pondering, the imagination and the vision of marriage, causing even us as Christ followers to “settle” for a lesser image of marriage.

Let’s take a real pet peeve of mine, for example. Do the advanced research on the amazon site and you will not find “Marriage” as a subject. Imagine that! “Relationships” is about as close as you get, but you’ve gotta dig even deeper within that section to find marriage.

It’s time to re-ponder. It’s time to re-imagine. It’s time to rethink marriage.

Here are some examples of where the do-overs in our minds need to happen:

Current Think – Marriage is a ball and chain. It ties you down.

Rethink – Marriage is a bond that builds security in the team formed by it.

Current Think – Marriage is something to be endured. You bear the marriage relationship. Even as they consider whom you should marry, people think of who they believe they can live with the rest of your life. A survival mentality.

Rethink – Marriage is a gift from the Lord. He knew when He created it that “Two are better than one.” (Ecclesiastes 4:9) We should throw the survival thinking out the window and look at the blessings of sharing life together. Don’t marry the person you think you can live with the rest of your life. Marry the person you can’t live without!

Current Think – Marriage is merely a step toward mediocrity. Everyone is doing it so I guess we will, too.

Rethink – One of my favorite songwriters is Carly Simon. But wow, she really missed it with her offering of “That’s the Way I’ve Always Heard It Should Be”. Beautiful music (I love playing it on the piano) but the lyrics are horrific. The song reflects the very sentiment of “Why not? You’ll not treat me right and we’ll have a so-so, ‘vanilla’ marriage. Nothing special at all, but sure, let’s get married.” Mediocrity is inevitable!

How sad! What a defeatist attitude!

Marriage is challenging, sure. It is work, and often hard work but well worth the labor! Yet the difficulties and challenges keep the spice in the journey. It makes the life together an adventure. Anything but boring or mediocre!

Genesis 2:25 talks of the very first man and woman being “naked and unashamed”. That’s total openness. Total trust. Total security. A total team. That’s how God designed marriage to be, far from the ball and chain thinking. Nowhere near the survival mentality. Nothing close to mediocrity. This extraordinary marriage (sorry, shameless plug – couldn’t resist!) is what Jesus was referring to in John 10:10 when He said, “I have come that they may have life and have it to the full”.

Do not settle for the world’s thoughts and images of marriage. Reset your thoughts on just what this whole marriage thing is. The Creator of marriage gave us His Word to remind us what His intent for marriage was and is. (See above.) Go there from time to time when you find your own thinking on marriage drifting. Go back to the truth.

So when you look at your mate that you’ve been married to for a while – maybe a long while – rethink marriage. Rethink and thank God for the challenge and the spicy adventure He has given to you.

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