A Wife Loved Like The Church

The “Only Ifs” of Marriage

Posted on: May 9, 2012

When Jonathan and I got married, we did not have very good examples of long lasting marriages. During our first year of marriage, God brought some exceptional families into our lives, who showed us what marriages looked like – both in good and bad times. They showed us how God desires to take two fallen, broken people, and allow them to grow – together –  to look more like Him.

Even with those examples, I still clung to a lot of “only ifs” in my commitment to Jonathan. I’ll stay married to him “only if he remains faithful”. I’ll continue to submit to him “only if he puts me first”. I’ll continue to love him “only if he earns my love”. This list went on. Yet, in the last year, God has been showing me there are no “only ifs” in marriage. There is only EVEN IF. I will stay married to him even if he is unfaithful. I will continue to submit to him even if he doesn’t put me first. I will continue to love him even if I don’t feel he has earned my love.

Those are hard commitments to live out. But marriage is hard. Marriage takes work, takes effort, takes putting your wants, your desires, your dreams on the back burner. Because marriage isn’t about you. Marriage is about God. Marriage is established as a way to show the world a more complete view of Christ and His church. And when you enter a marriage, you make a commitment to not just your spouse, but to God. Even when your spouse fails {because they will fail} you are still committed to God in your marriage.

Floating around the internet is this wonderful story of Ian and Larissa. I ask you to take the 9 minutes to watch it ::

If you are interested in taking a look at the book Larissa mentions, This Momentary Marriage, you can get a free PDF copy HERE.

*I realize there are lots of complicated reasons for divorce and it’s not a black-and-white, cut-and-dry situation. And I am certainly not judging people who have been divorced. I’m just calling out, saying, in a society that claims marriage is for our betterment and pleasure only, perhaps we’ve missed the whole point. 

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13 Responses to "The “Only Ifs” of Marriage"

So beautiful said, Sarah — I agree wholeheartedly. I’m so sorry that you didn’t have good examples of marriage, I can see how that would change your view on everything. I love the way you said “even if” — so true. Sounds so much better than “divorice is not an option” although that is true as well :).

Thanks. I agree, saying “even if” doe sound better than “divorce isn’t an option” although it’s the same. 😉

I totally agree! I like how you put it into words. As always thanks for sharing!

Thanks Jessica!

something to spice things up…take a look at the 30 Day Encourage Your Husband challenge on http://www.reviveourhearts.com I’m working my way through it right now.

Thanks for sharing the link, Ann! I’m looking forward to working through it too!

Sarah, your words are beautiful and you’re so right! What a blessing that God gave you good examples throughout adulthood in your early years of marriage. I always try to remember that though our early years were tough they got us to where we are. I should probably not watch this video right now (being so hormonal) but I am and it’s beautiful thanks for sharing that also!

So true about the early years! Even in our mistakes, God wants to use that time to heal us, make our marriages stronger, and use us to edify others. Praise Him for that!

soooo good!!

Thank you! 🙂

Thank you for this. So eye opening.

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