Multi-Part Audio Message
Today’s audio message is broken up into several parts to make listening easier. Since the message is longer than my average posts, I wanted to make this listening experience more enjoyable as well as feasible—taking into consideration that some of you may be listening to it in the car, between appointments, etc. Please also note that this audio message contains content that is not reflected in the written message below. Please listen and enjoy!
Audio Message 1 of 3
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Audio Message 3 of 3
“Let your fountain be blessed, and take pleasure in the wife of your youth. A loving doe, a graceful fawn — let her breasts always satisfy you; be lost in her love forever. Why, my son, would you be infatuated with a forbidden woman or embrace the breast of a stranger? For a man’s ways are before the Lord’s eyes, and He considers all his paths. A wicked man’s iniquities entrap him; he is entangled in the ropes of his own sin. He will die because there is no discipline, and be lost because of his great stupidity.”
Proverbs 5:18-23 HCSB
I read in a devotional published by the International English Service Jakarta, one of their contributors thoughts about Solomon’s views on marriage, that I was moved to share. The writer said:
Solomon tells us to remain faithful to our spouses. He says that the sexual relationship with our spouse, even after 30 or 40 years, is better than a relationship with someone outside of our marriage. Why? No guilt or shame, for one thing.
God blesses the marriage bed and tells us to keep it pure. And while sex is only one part of marriage, it is a very important part. Sharing that intimacy with someone else can only destroy your marriage….
The more we are faithful, the less we will be tempted. Run towards God, run towards your spouse. Flee everything that draws you away from either of them.
Someone near and dear to my heart expressed their opinions about marriage and why so many of us struggle in this sacred relationship, and why some of us fail and end up in divorce. He said that it is due to our failure to realize what marriage truly is in and through God’s eyes.
It’s more than our blunder of limiting it to rings and weddings, it is our inability to fully comprehend how God sees us and the expectations that He has for us to come together and love each other fully as He loves us; to protect and care for each other as we would our own bodies, as our most beloved and valued.
It is our relationship with Him through another. In their eyes we should see God. We should see them as God sees them.
Our failings in this union are clear indications that we don’t fully understand what it means to be a husband and wife, that men don’t understand what it means to be a wife—as they don’t see themselves in the role as wife—they don’t see the value and importance of that role and they can’t see themselves as spiritual ‘wives’ of Jesus.
If all men saw themselves as spiritual ‘wives’ of Jesus then they would see and appreciate women differently. Women have been reduced to chattel, the property of man to use and discard at his discretion—and that ignorance or blatant stupidity on the part of some men only reinforces the fact that many men don’t realize and know how God sees His daughters.
Daily, God attempts to remind us that what we do to His children we do to Him—whether love or hate, respect or disrespect—and the consequences of our actions will always steer towards and land upon us.
Our infidelity in our relationship is a direct reflection upon our commitment and faithfulness to God. How we treat each other shows our character and how we value God or not. To reinforce this statement let’s focus on one truth—if we are God’s creations, His reflections, made in His image and likeness—then is it not true that the way that we treat and handle what He created is a clear indication and statement about how we feel about Him, what we think about the things He created? Or “the lack of what we believe about ourself,” as my beloved shared with me today. “If you don’t see yourself as a King or Queen then you won’t behave that way and won’t expect to be treated accordingly….What you believe dictates your choices and decisions, and those actions reflect your character” he concluded.
Let’s look at it this way….
If you built and furnished a house and I come inside with mud, dog feces, motor oil, and sewage on my hands, shoes and clothes and I walked all throughout your home dragging my feet and leaving streaks and droppings of this mess all over your floors—and then I sat and laid across all of your furniture, including every bed in your home, smearing these substances all over the upholstery and linen—what would you think about me? What do my actions tell you about me and how I see myself? What would you think and how would you feel about your home?
Now imagine that after doing this I began to break your windows, mirrors, and light fixtures, destroy your walls and doors with a sledge hammer, and then went on a full rampage inside your home.
What would you think about me? What do my actions say about me? What do my actions say about how I view and value you and your home?
Think about it—I know how long it took you to build and furnish the house. I know the financial and emotional investment that went into making this your home. You told me all of this multiple times. I know what this house means to you. I know the future that you have planned for this house and your life in it. I know the legacy that you envision and the role this house plays in the legacy.
But I’ve chosen to destroy the house. What am I telling you?
Does it not feel like a direct attack upon you? Does it not feel as though that sledgehammer is hitting your body, not just the doors and walls?
So when we emotionally, verbally, physically, sexually, financially misuse and abuse one of God’s children what are we saying to Him? When we say our marriage vows and declare that we will love, honor, value, respect, and be faithful to this one person—yet do the opposite—what message are we clearly sending to God?
Is our casualness and disrespect of the union called marriage not a direct statement to God?
Marrying over and over as though we’re entering a drawing for the lottery tells God what exactly?
Maybe if people saw marriage as less transactional and more spiritual then we would have fewer toxic relationships and even fewer divorces. If people truly understood the expectations and responsibilities of marriage and their role within it then they wouldn’t casually or blindly sign up to participate like it’s karaoke night at the local bar or restaurant.
Maybe if we saw God in the eyes of our significant other, heard God when they spoke, felt God when their hands touch us—maybe we would reconsider being part of a relationship when we know that we (or they) aren’t mature enough to handle the commitment that is required. If we lived this way then we would respect and love God enough to admit that we’re not ready for a relationship that can lead to marriage. We would also refuse to marry a person that we know isn’t ready for the commitment required as a spouse. We would look within them and see that God is still molding them but they just aren’t where He and you need them to be.
Maybe if we saw God in everyone we would be more cautious in our ways and disciplined throughout our days, we wouldn’t be quick to marry and even quicker to divorce, and we definitely wouldn’t jump on the marriage merry-go-round where we jump from one horse to the next—-thinking that somehow it is the horse that makes the difference—when it’s about us, how we view and value the horse and ourselves, and how we associate that horse to it’s Creator.
What kind of relationship do you want to have with God? What do you want your actions to express to Him each day? Based on how you live your life and treat others, what are you expecting to receive from God in exchange for what you give?
Ponder this and then share your thoughts and feelings in the comment section below or via email at: firstname.lastname@example.org
Father help me to see You in each of Your children. Help me to speak and act towards Your children as I would to You, to Your Son Jesus. Touch my heart Father to be mindful that what I do and say to Your children, I do and say to You.
Let me feel the burden of knowing that the decisions that I make directly speak to You and express how I see and value You and our relationship.
Hold my tongue so that my spoken words are intentional and thoughtful, and even through disappointment that what I say is spoken from love not hate, love not envy, love not jealousy, love not indifference.
Father, steer me from actions that can lead to harm of self and of others, and from actions that would in any way disrespect You. I humbly pray for the discernment, strength, courage, and conviction to live my life as You desire so that I can be all that You need for me to be. In Jesus’ name I pray to You today and every day. Amen.