|My heart beat wildly as I realized what was happening. A beautiful ring sat nestled in a black box as Aaron asked me to become his wife. I couldn’t stop smiling. He took out the ring, and inscribed in the precious metal was a powerful verse that would set the foundation for our soon-to-be marriage:
“… a cord of three strands is not quickly broken. Ecc. 4:12”
We faced many hardships in the beginning years of our marriage. Our own selfishness would lead us into isolation, the place our enemy wanted us to stay. We were the most ineffective in our marriage when we made choices that kept us isolated from each other.
With our eyes focused inward on ourselves, we didn’t minister well toward each other, and we definitely weren’t acting as a ministry team to others. Those first few years of marriage were difficult, but God held us together and revealed areas of sin in our lives that needed repentance and transformation. We asked God to help us change so He’d be glorified through our lives and our marriage.
If we had continued our selfish ways, our marriage would have crumbled. Instead, we turned to God, and we trusted He had a purpose for our life together. We submitted to His will for us, prayed together, and gained hope for our future. This doesn’t mean everything became easy; rather, now whenever we face hardship, we know where to go for help, wisdom and strength.
After 12 years of marriage, we still cling to this truth-filled verse which reminds us that we’re stronger together: “Though one may be overpowered, two can defend themselves. A cord of three strands is not quickly broken” (Ecclesiastes 4:12).
In several areas of our marriage, we can see how being stronger together — most importantly, being bound together with God — has turned the extremely difficult into extraordinary victory.
This included overcoming an addiction to pornography, surviving postpartum several times, raising our children, building a business, building a home, and achieving a life-long dream of becoming published authors … plus the everyday logistics that come with all these decisions. We wouldn’t be able to call these things victories if we hadn’t worked together, with God at the center of our marriage.
Marriage is an incredible gift. There’s power and safety when we stand together, and yet, when we stand with God, there is infinitely more power!
When we’re united with each other and with God, we look out for one another, consider each other, defend each other, and work better with each other. Instead of fighting to be right or always trying to do things our own way, we aim to pursue peace and seek to bless each other.
A husband and wife who stand with God, standing on the truth of His Word, become a powerful tool in His hands to do the good works He prepared beforehand for us to do.
On days when it’s easy to feel filled with doubt, let’s remember God has a purpose for our marriages — more than just making each other happy. He intentionally created you and your spouse. As a couple, you have a beautiful opportunity to serve God as a team for His Kingdom purposes. If you believe your marriage doesn’t have a purpose, then you’ll act as though it has none. But the opposite is also true: If you believe God brought you together for His purpose, then you will chase that purpose!
And if you’re single or even if your marriage is hanging by a thread, your life still has purpose. The one and only place any of us can find true hope and lasting peace is in the Lord. Let’s encourage one another to hang in there!
Your marriage is a gift — not just to the two of you, but to be a blessing to this world. Rather than “you and me against the world,” God calls each couple to the rich and meaningful mission of “you and me for the world.” Because two people with God are stronger together!
Dear Lord, guide us as we chase boldly after Your purpose for our life together. May You use our marriage to fulfill Your will. In Jesus’ Name, Amen.