Twenty Five Years: A testimony to God’s goodness.
Adam and Eve. Man and Woman. Husband and Wife. It was God’s idea. (See Genesis 1-3) In an age of broken vows and collapsing social structures, does God’s plan for marriage and family still work?
Twenty five years ago Linda and I walked down the aisle in Rosedale Chapel. In the years since, God has blessed us far beyond our expectations. From our time-tested vantage point, God’s plan for lifelong marriage between one Man and one Woman is supremely satisfying. It works, and works well! We are unworthy, grateful participants in His plan, so privileged to proclaim His goodness. Following are some principles we have found to be important in maintaining a satisfying marriage:
- Commitment to God’s way first. God’s definition of a “committed relationship” is one man and one woman for life. According to the teachings of Jesus and the apostles, breaking the marriage vows and marrying someone else while the first partner is still living, constitutes adultery. Starting with this premise, divorce has never been an option for us. After June 10, 1989, Linda and I knew we had to make it work. There were no other options. In this way, obedience to God’s plan brings unshakeable commitment to the marriage partner.
- Sacrificial Love. This kind of love serves the marriage partner for their good—following Christ’sLiving this way is a never-ending quest with many opportunities daily.
- Understanding God’s order. Marriage roles are clearly defined in the Bible in several places, most notably in 1 Corinthians 11, and Ephesians 5. In God’s order, the husband/father is to be the leader and head of the home, always exercising his authority with the love of Christ. The wife/mother follows the leadership of the husband in an attitude of deference and respect. There is no thought of one partner being superior to theWe simply seek to follow God’s design for the marriage roles, and it has worked well for us.
- Security and trust. A commitment to each other that flows out of commitment to God, sacrificial love, and acceptance of proper roles (see 1-3 above) brings a comfortable security that breedsYou don’t have to worry that some crisis or personal failure will result in the marriage splitting up because you both know that your commitment to this marriage is based on a higher commitment to God and His way. This is a security that is extremely restful and satisfying.
- Growing intimacy. In a long term environment of security and trust, intimacy can flourish on all levels of the personality; spirit, soul andThis is a mutual intimacy that takes years to nurture and is a priceless treasure that leads to total mutual acceptance. No one-night stands or casual relationships can do this.
- Communication. It’s a wonderful thing to have a partner you can talk with about anything. No secrets, nothing hidden from each other. Unspoken communication is as comfortable as verbal communication. Marriage is a great place to learn the art of heart communication.
- Satisfying physical relationships. Surveys show that married couples enjoy a much more satisfying physical relationship than do singles or co-habiting couples. (Chapter 6, The Case for Marriage, Linda Waite & Maggie Gallagher) With life-long devotion to one partner, there are endless discoveries and the intimacies of marriage can be enjoyed without shame or regret---or STD’s.
- Children as the welcome Fruit of Marriage. In the first 14 years, God gave us six precious babies. Our desire has been to bring them up in His ways and give each one back to Him. They have been our highest joy and blessing, and we’ve had so many fun times together.
We view the changes that are happening in our society with great sadness. We plead with people everywhere to return to God’s design for marriage, family and parenting. After twenty five years we can declare with all certainty: His plan still works!