All of us are fallen, and all of us are very hard to live with – CS Lewis
Everyone has their natural born idiosyncrasies and foibles.
But these pet peeves become heightened exponentially when you throw two people in a full-time living situation.
When I was in college my personal mentor once told me that dating was a lot like the job interviewing process: Much of what you see is a front, and you better really like what you see, because it definitely not going to look or act better after you’re married.
I’m always amazed with some young couples who lead an unhealthy and tumultuous dating relationship and yet continue to glibly march towards a marriage covenant: As if marriage is going to magically dissipate all the issues between them. Rather, it is probably going to exacerbate them.
Marriage is when men and women put on their big boy and girl pants and panties and resolve to do work in their relationship. Mix in some massive bills/debt and precious little kids pooping, crying, and bouncing around and this marriage thing is probably the hardest endeavor a human can undertake in their lifetime.
Marriage isn’t necessarily about keeping some teenage infatuation “loving feeling” going, it’s about keeping a sworn covenant to the death for the glory of God. The marriage covenant has ancient, even eternal, origins. This is a covenant that reflects the unbroken commitment Jesus (The Bridegroom) has for His church (bride) (Ephesians 5). This undying commitment came “before the foundations of the world.” Which makes it all the more tragic when modern marriages break apart at the seams: Families are broken AND the reflected image of Christ and His church has been effectively spat upon.
I’m not going to get into the issue too deep here, but: When heterosexual unions are broken and maimed for “differences” in taste like they are in America, homosexual union supporters rightly shake their head in disgust. Let’s be honest and repentant about our negligence and failures in this matter. As Alistair Begg has said, “Until the church learns how to cry, it loses any right to shout.”
Even though my wife, Jessica, is my beautiful best friend I fall short of the biblical standard for husbands. Yes I fall short, but I try my best not to fall stagnant. So I do get on my wife’s nerves when I don’t correctly fold and hangup my used towels, and she gets underneath my skin when she leaves the toilet seat down : ). We’re working on it. But we both have a higher vision than ourselves in this covenant, and it spurns us toward expressing mercy and grace when neither party is deserving of it.
Marriage isn’t meant to look like “the Notebook” or a Kardashian reality show. In marriage, we have the weighty opportunity to display Christ and His unconditional love for the church. If we’re married or plan on getting married at some point, let’s put on our working boots and big boy pants and fight, pray, and forgive in order to honor that goal.