He created marriage to be a picture of Him. Marriage is about your holiness.”. Don’t believe me? Grace, Marriage does not guarantee happiness. Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Where Have All the Gray-Haired Ladies Gone. Prior to this role, he served in leadership for Every Man's Battle for 13 years. N either of us "needed" to get married. Happiness is in the Lord, but without holiness, no man shall see the Lord. St. Augustine wrote, "Complete abstinence is easier than perfect moderation." Conversely, when I seek to harm my husband, that harm is inflicted upon me. God uses marriage to produce holiness in us, not necessarily happiness. We can fail to experience happiness in marriage because we belong to our self-centeredness more than to our spouses. During this period, Paul taught me his "three-day rule." It is just a childish dream and nothing else. I don't like to get out of my comfort zone, but seeing Halee exercise courage over the years gave me the courage to quit my job in the middle of the recession. Yet there we were, barefoot on a sandy beach outside Santa Barbara, making our vows to the sound of rushing waves crashing on the shore. Of course, our marriages are fallen. But when we married, I noticed that my honesty was more divisive than it was beneficial to our marriage. Marriage Investing in us Faith and marriage Gratitude. Sign Up For Our Newsletter Reviewed in the United Kingdom on August 31, 2017. The truth didn't always have to be painful. The bride and groom represent God and his church….whom he says is the Bride of Christ. Paul Scott is a registered therapist specializing in drug, alcohol, and sexual addition. Marriage Isn’t for Everyone. Marriage the Way it Was Intended Ultimately my belief about homosexuality (being that it is not the way God created us, and a sin to act on those desires) is rooted in the way that God created marriage. Linda: A good marriage is one of the life-factors most strongly associated and consistently associated with happiness. He was a diligent worker, but he didn't feel compelled to put in excessively long hours. God designed marriage as holiness and happiness. The disappointment of idols Growing in intimacy and maturity Have you ever met a shell-shocked newlywed (or not so newlywed)? We bring things that do not belong, such as bitterness and anger. Not knowing this is the root cause of an identity crisis. So we must take heed that we do not fall into the same I (Halee) have never been good at moderation; I always seem to operate in extremes, whether in work or play. 1. In 1930, Pope Pius XI proposed that the primary purpose for Christian marriage was not procreation or sacrament, but to serve as a context for moral development. Thank you so much for sharing your wisdom, may God bless you to continue to grow in Him, you have much to share – people need this! I dare you to do The Love Dare for 40 days and see what happens. The damsel doesn’t want to clean up the prince’s dirty clothes off the floor – she wants him to meet her needs and keep her happy, regardless of her own selfishness. We are not to skip the first element. After all, if the purpose of marriage is holiness, these annoying situations provide us with ample opportunity to practice Christlikeness as we […]. Both of us were independent and for the most part, content in our singleness. Holiness gives us new desires and brings old desires into line with one another. We can fail to experience happiness in marriage because we belong to our self-centeredness more than to our spouses. When I surrendered my rights—like cutting short a night out with friends to take care of Halee when I knew she'd had a long day at school or work—I became more diligent, motivated, and sensitive to others' needs. A person saying this has either not stopped to think through the situation or is willfully disregarding the heart of the faithful spouse. It wasn't enough to run three miles when my daily goal was five. The root of all problems is a theological problem. CT's weekly newsletter highlighting the voices of women writers. Enter your email address to follow this blog and receive notifications of new posts by email. So often I am dwelling on how my husband does not meet my needs. Temperance. Our culture shapes our thinking and conduct regarding marriage to an incredible degree. while I sweated it out for an A+. Once again, this points toward holiness, not happiness. Thanks for sharing these words. When you apply this statement to a married couple, things take a new light. When he cleaned the house, he didn't always dust or mop or polish the leather couches. It was a difficult transition, especially in the beginning. Still other groups have emphasized the spiritual goals of marriage. Lewis called courage "the form of every virtue at the testing point." Change ), You are commenting using your Facebook account. Holiness within marriage is essential for us to maintain an active prayer life. or "How can our marriage make us each more like Christ?" Undefiled and honored, the covenant of marriage safeguards a core of pleasure. We report on news and give our opinion on topics such as church, family, sexuality, discipleship, pop culture, and more! The writer of Hebrews also seems to point toward holiness in marriage. In this 40-minute session from the 2015 Marriage Ministry Conference, Gary Thomas, author of "Sacred Marriage," and Ted Cunningham, well-known author and founding pastor of Woodland Hills Family Church, debate whether happiness or holiness is more important in marriage. This passage from Ephesians on marriage … There might be times we are unhappy with our marriage or our spouse. or "How can I cope in this marriage?" Before I move on to the next stage of my transformation journey, I’d like to share more of what I have learned about living marriage God’s way. Marriage is about HOLINESS, not Happiness, Grace’s Story: My “Love Dare” Experience | God's Way Actually Works, Did I Marry the Right Person? Being married actually helps with the sanctification process because I have numerous opportunities to pay forward the unconditional love that God has given me. I was curious about how this came to pass since the families live so far apart. ❤. Marriage yokes us to an imperfect person who … let’s face it … is selfish, just as we, at our cores, are also selfish. I am utterly convinced God designed marriage to help us grow in holiness. God desires the biggest romance ever with us. And that day, we washed each other's feet in the surf to symbolize our commitment to serve each other to that end. | God's Way Actually Works, Foundational Attribute of a Strong Marriage: Forgiveness | God's Way Actually Works. She went on to brave 16 hours of labor to bring our daughter into the world. The Scotts live in Holland, Michigan, with their two daughters, Ellie and Viv. Temperance is the ability to practice moderation in action, thought, or feeling. Courage. But eventually, I did quit and moved into the work that God had called me to. Courage isn't the absence of fear as much as it is the willingness to move forward despite fear. Because the Holy Spirit is in you while you are one with your spouse, your choice to align yourself with God will change your marriage, regardless of your spouse’s attitude. On our way to the airport after the service, I asked Dr. Williams about another friend, P. S. Thomas and his family. She applied (and was hired) for jobs I thought she needed more experience for. Then I realized that was a LIE! Sign Up For Our Weekly Newsletter Grace is a wife, mother, and regular person with an irregular life. Often translated "wisdom," the word prudence comes from the word providence, which means "to see ahead." This is a … Then again, being single isn’t for everyone either. A marriage that’s not based on personal happiness, but holiness. CT's weekly newsletter to help women grow their marriage and family relationships through biblical principles. Recommended Read more. Marriage Is for Holiness, Not Just Happiness. And preceding any possibility of finding true happy-holiness is the profound reality that our sins must be permanently and forever removed before a holy God. Change ), You are commenting using your Google account. What's inside this article. She divides her life into two segments – before and after March 2013, when she made the commitment to tithe the first hour of her day to one-on-one time with God no matter what. Christianity Today strengthens the church by richly communicating the breadth of the true, good, and beautiful gospel. It wasn't long into our marriage when I discovered Paul didn't share this "value." Of course, our marriages are fallen. But what do these opportunities look like in everyday life? Because we are yoked together, I am more aware of my husband’s shortcomings than anyone else in the world (just as he is with mine), which puts me in a unique position to pray for him so God can intervene in places that nobody else sees. Beautiful message! This companionship has an aspect of happiness designed into it, but it is the classical definition of happiness (in this case a prospering in one’s relationships) and not the modern version of feeling good about oneself or one’s circumstances in life – marital or otherwise. He spoke thoughtfully, ensuring that his words contributed to the well-being of others. Just because something is used for our perfection does not mean it is why God created it! In the cornucopia of Christian marriage self-help books, the guiding questions seem to be along the lines of "What can I get out of this?" It was designed for companionship. Holiness in marriage is a very practical thing. If it is, you’re going to be disappointed.) To marry for personal happiness (or love) was considered a selfish act that disregarded the needs of the broader community. Marriage provides a daily context for spiritual growth because it gives us opportunities to put away sinful tendencies and practice more virtuous behaviors. It is very insightful. ( Log Out /  [Graphic: Cover of Gary Thomas’ book, Sacred Marriage.]. Believe it or not, this difference in our approaches to things was one of the biggest sources of conflict in our marriage. It was designed for companionship. (For that matter, the goal of your life shouldn’t be happiness either. God led me to Gary Thomas’ writings and the epiphany that happiness is not the point of marriage, which is the lie that society tells us. This isn’t to say that my beloved doesn’t make me happy. Early in life I'd seen how damaging it was to bury emotions, so in an effort to avoid that mistake, I made the equal and opposite error of expressing myself without a great deal of forethought. His “holiness not happiness” blog post may seem unreasonable to those whose lives do not revolve around faith. I really appreciate it! Marriage isn’t for everyone. Report abuse. The trouble—even for contemporary Christians—is that we often approach marital issues in an individualistic way. But more often than not, his temperate approach was the better way, and even if it doesn't always come naturally, I've learned to practice moderation in various areas of my life. You can pray all you want in an unhappy marriage; but prayer will be blocked solid if you’re in an unholy marriage. Paul dreamed of living alone on a boat off the coast of Newport Beach, California; Halee had plans to travel the world teaching English overseas. He does. © Grace Daniels 2017. Marriage Is for Holiness, Not Just Happiness. (2) Happiness is not the goal of marriage. It's not that God doesn't want our marriages to bring us deep satisfaction and happiness, it's just that marriage is bursting with opportunities for deeper spiritual growth—opportunities we may be missing if we're not asking all the right questions. The answer, as shown above, is that marriage was not designed for holiness. This one life decision invited God’s healing power into her life, transforming her from the inside out. Change ), You are commenting using your Twitter account. It’s written by a guy named Gary Thomas. The pastor said these wise words: “If the person you are married to is ‘bad’ enough that Jesus had to die for his or her sins, then your spouse is going to annoy you from time to time.” Oh, the truth in those words … and it works both ways! Dr. Halee Gray Scott is an author, independent scholar, and researcher. Read more articles that highlight writing by Christian women at ChristianityToday.com/Women. Therefore, because you are one, God only needs one of you to submit to His authority (to actually do what He says to do) to heal your marriage. How important it is to be Holy rather than happy, or should I say that holiness can bring happiness! ( Log Out /  I was able to "see ahead" and discern what words would best build up the other person. The Catholic church believes marriage is a sacrament because the relationship between husband and wife represents the union of Christ to his bride, believers. Charity is agape love, unconditional, self-sacrificing love. As Paul said, not getting married can be the best thing for someone’s relationship to God: I believe marriage exists to make us holy – to make us much better versions of ourselves that we may not have been without marriage. So I pushed those feelings down. Even satan is a theologian (a faulty and wrong theologian). I fear that many couples within the Church have bought into society’s views of marriage, which may account for why the divorce rate among Christians is as high as it is (although see this article that notes a correlation between regular church attendance and a lower divorce rate). When we took the same course in graduate school, he was content with an A- (or even a B+!) Because of his daily influence, I've learned how to be more tactful in the way I say things. For example, guys sometimes think they have a "right" to their own space or their own time (like a night out with the guys), but I (Paul) realized that the perceived "rights" I had were really selfish aspects of my character that God wanted to change through our marriage. But not only are holiness and happiness (or blessedness) joined in the Psalms; they get linked together in the Proverbs, and very tightly by Jesus in his Beatitudes (Matthew 5:2–12). A mistake many people make in marriage is fighting for their "rights" when charity—or love—requires that we lay down our "rights" for God or for the sake of others. Mrs. K J Bell. How our marriage has made us better people, What a bicycle built for two did to our marriage, Embracing age in a youth-obsessed culture. rather than "What are we forging together?" How exactly can marriage make us more holy? I know people don't like to hear this but it isn't. It wasn't until the 12th century that the troubadours (a group of traveling poets) introduced the concept of courtly love as we know it today. Holiness within marriage is essential for us to maintain an active prayer life. She has been leading Bible studies through her local church for over a decade and is passionate about encouraging others to pursue a close, deep, personal, and intimate relationship with God. So in one sense, to pit this twisted type of “happiness” against holiness is biblically right; it is in opposition to pursuing the things of God. A married person who considers holiness and Christlikeness as the ultimate objective of marriage approaches the relationship with a completely different mindset than one who believes marriage is all about personal happiness. Theo related that … God has shown my through Gary Thomas’ writings and Alex Kendrick’s and Stephen Kendrick’s book, The Love Dare, that marriage works best when I allow God to transform me into Christ’s image as I put my husband’s needs ahead of my own. She is currently writing a book to help Christian women leaders thrive in ministry. It’s a solemn sacred institution that is managed by it’s founder, God. ( Log Out /  Thanks for sharing! Charity is the highest, the most important of the three theological virtues (faith, hope, charity). Our actions become habits and habits, like grooves on a well-worn path, become our character. I was afraid, wondering how I would be able to provide for my family. In other words both marriage and sex have a purpose which is much larger than individual happiness. When we think of holiness only in terms of “spiritual” things like reading our Bibles or praying, we make two mistakes. 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