Marriage on The ROCK

Posted: February 26, 2012 in Love, Marriage
Tags: , , , , , , ,

“My marriage is on the rocks!” That’s one of the first statements I hear from the many couples I counsel who are having marital problems. Or they may say that they’re going through a rocky period in their relationship. Whatever the terminology, the point is that things have gone from bad to worse, and they can’t even remember what good felt like. It’s at this point that I remind them that instead of throwing rocks at each other we must work together to build our marriage on The ROCK. This is no easy task, but whoever said that marriage would be easy?

There could be no better example of marriage than the first one. Adam and Eve had the perfect relationship. They were LITERALLY made for each other. They had a mansion with no mortgage (and it came with a beautiful Garden). Adam had a great job and because they had no bills, Eve was able to stay at home and take care of the house. They didn’t have any kids yet, but they had tons of pets to keep them company, and perhaps best of all, they had no nosey in-laws trying to get in their business :-).

Despite all of this, one day trouble came knocking at their door. Their marriage faced its first real test. It doesn’t matter how great your marriage is, one day it will be tested. Adam lost his cushy job in management and had to start working in the field (literally), Eve got pregnant and had to deal with the pain of childbirth (not to mention the mood swings of pregnancy), and they got evicted from their beautiful home. Talk about a test! And to make matters worse, when Adam had a chance to stand up and take responsibility for his mistakes, he blamed everything on Eve!

Most marriages would not have survived all this turmoil. In fact, many don’t survive much less than this. Yet, Adam and Eve stayed together and built quite a little family (they’re called The Human Race – ever heard of ’em?). I wonder what kept them together? How did their marriage survive? Adam could have asked God to put him to sleep and make him another wife, after he all he did have a few “spare ribs” (BADUM-CHING – LOL). Eve could have left and moved back in with her mother…oh wait, she couldn’t…but she could have decided she didn’t want to stay with a man who blamed her for everything and decided to go her separate way, effectively ending the human race. The entire world was riding on their marriage! Thankfully for you and me, they decided to stick it out and stay together.

The secret, I believe, is that from the beginning, Adam and Eve were not alone in their marriage. Their marriage was built on The ROCK. No, I’m not talking about that wrestler-turned-actor who’s always inviting people to smell whatever he’s cooking. I’m talking about “The ROCK of Ages.” The only reason Adam and Eve’s marriage survived is that their marriage was not only built on their relationship with each other, but also on their relationship with God. When the world is counting on your marriage to survive, you better have more than your mutual love because as one singer so eloquently put it, “Love don’t pay the rent.”

Adam and Eve had The ROCK to run to when their marriage was on the rocks. The first thing The ROCK did is He covered them. Genesis 3:21 says, “Also for Adam and his wife the Lord God made tunics of skin, and clothed them” (NKJV). They were naked and ashamed, and God clothed them. He covered their nakedness, their hurt, their anger, and their pain. Perhaps the reason our relationships are so rocky is because we’ve got uncovered wounds. Any health professional will tell you that if you have a wound, you’ve got to cover it before it gets infected. Many of us are walking around in our marriages with uncovered wounds that have become infected with the spirit of bitterness. Now the infection has spread to all parts of our marriage, and what started out as a fairy tale has now become a horror show.

If that’s the story of your marriage, the good news is that if you don’t like what you are seeing, you have the power to change the channel. Don’t settle for a marriage on the rocks when you can have a marriage on The ROCK. Of course this begins by putting God first in your life and in your marriage, but there are also a few practical steps we can take to make our marriage ROCK.

1. Repent to your spouse for all you’ve done wrong.

Repent of the wrong you have done to your spouse in the past. You cannot move forward in your marriage if you don’t deal with the stuff in your past. Otherwise, it will keep popping up at the most inopportune time, and a discussion about who left the dirty dishes in the sink last night will turn into a full-blown argument over all the dirty things you’ve done over the years. I’m not saying that you should go back and cut open every old scar, but I am suggesting that you should recognize that there are scars and acknowledge your part in putting them there. This is one area we should NOT take our cue from Adam and Eve. When turmoil hit, they both shifted the blame and failed to take responsibility for their actions. Repent for your past so you can move on to your future. This is something that BOTH parties should do. Even though one person may have done the most wrong, no spouse is blameless. Focus on what YOU have done wrong and repent for that.

2. Overcome the spirit of bitterness.

We overcome bitterness through forgiveness. Repentance and forgiveness are not an “If/Then” proposition.  One is not a pre-condition for the other. They are both unconditional expressions of unconditional love. If you want to put your marriage on the ROCK you must remove all conditions. In other words, you cannot say, “I will only forgive my spouse after they repent.” You are called to forgive your spouse whether or not they repent and ask for forgiveness. The first statement Jesus made from the cross in Luke 23:34 was “Father forgive them.” They never asked for forgiveness. In fact, He forgave them while they were still crucifying Him! Marriage is not a give and  take; it is a GIVE and FORGIVE. You give your best…and forgive your spouse’s worst.

3. Consider your spouse’s needs.

As you move forward with your marriage on The ROCK, your spouse’s needs must become your priority. That means you must be mindful of him or her before you do anything. Most “rocky” relationships are the result of selfishness on the part of one or both spouses. Marriage is the process of two becoming one. You cannot become one if you’re always looking out for number one. Marriage is a sacrifice…that’s why it begins at an altar! Consider your spouse’s needs, and do everything in your power to meet them.

4. Keep repeating steps 1-3.

Building your marriage on The ROCK is a process. It doesn’t happen overnight…it happens over time. You have to constantly work on improving your marriage. It’s like the bottle of shampoo that comes with the instructions: Wash, Rinse, Repeat. You can’t just do it one time and think your work is done. As a matter of fact, your work has just begun. You have a lot of work to do to build your marriage on The ROCK. The good news is you have a lot of time to do it. After all, marriage is meant to last a lifetime!

Advertisements
Comments
  1. Wow! How insightful (and hopefully not inciteful)! Well written, and a refreshing new perspective into Adam and Eve’s story. Thank you for sacrificing some zzzzzz’s to bless us!

  2. This is great! Wow! How insightful (and hopefully not inciteful)! Well written, and a refreshing new perspective into Adam and Eve’s story. Thank you for sacrificing some zzzzzz’s to bless us!

  3. Luke11 says:

    Good stuff champ!! Gret read!

  4. Excellent! And LOL @ “spare rib!”

    This blog ROCKS! 😀

  5. Simple Servant says:

    Very powerful message Pastor! I am definitely passing this rich understanding of how to make it work pass the difficult times, to both my married folks as they look forward to many more happy years of marriage and to my single folks, as they prepare for what’s to come after the wedding is over. Indeed a message that everyone can eat from and leave with a full stomach! Rock on preacher, Rock on! LOL

  6. Simple Servant says:

    Very powerful message Pastor! I am definitely passing this rich understanding of how to make it work pass the difficult times, to both my married folks as they look forward to many more happy years of marriage and to my single folks, as they prepare for what’s to come after the wedding is over. Indeed a message that everyone can eat from and leave with a full stomach! Rock on preacher, Rock on! LOL –Min.Kathy Marseille

  7. Lay Lay says:

    nice article

  8. Phenomenal post and tremendous wisdom.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s