Recent statistics have revealed, once again, that the divorce rate of the church is dangerously similar to that of the unbelieving world. After being confronted with this fact and questioned as to the reason this is so, Dr. Richard Land replied, "It's because, for too long, the church has been quoting the bible by the mile and living it by the inch!" Agreed.
Why is this so? Why is the church no different in the success rate of it's marriages? Want the painful (but true) answer? Here it is: the church has forgotten how to honor marriage.
The Greek word for honor here is timios--which means "most precious."
The most precious relationship a man and woman could ever have between one another is the one-flesh union of marriage. And, it is worth fighting for. Even when things get difficult. Even if it turns out to be a little different than what you initially imagined it to be. Even if. Even if. Fill in the blank.
On several occasions growing up, I have heard the expression "nothing worthwhile comes easily." The older I get and the more I learn about myself, I find this statement to be incredibly, increasingly true!
Marriage is not simply an event. Marriage is not a one-lane street of self-indulgence and satisfaction. Marriage is a commitment of honor! It is most precious! It is the uniting of two individuals, which were completely independent before, into a one-flesh, precious union. A union of sacrifice. A union of selflessness. A union of forgiveness. A union of making mistakes and learning from them.
Billy Graham, when asked the secret to his marriage, once said, "The secret to marriage is for two people to be very good forgivers!" Marriage is worth the forgiveness it takes to make it work. Don't give up on marriage! Don't give up on the most precious relationship you could ever have with another human being!
Let's make marriage precious "by the mile" once again! For the witness of the church! To exalt Christ! To the Glory of God!