Growing Closer Together In Christ
April 21, 2020
When we look at God’ design for man kind and for society we begin to see that the foundation is the family unit. If we then take a look at the foundation of the family, we will quickly see that the one human relationship at the center of it all is the marriage relationship between a man and women as husband and wife. Because of this reality it should come as no surprise that this relationship has been a focal point of attack by the enemy.
All we have to do is look around at the world we live in and we will see the areas in which the Biblical relationship is being attacked. A majority of marriages, even in the Body of Christ, now end in divorce. Whether it be due to an addiction, infidelity, fighting, disagreements, or too much time spent on hobbies, education, career, more couples are getting divorced in these times than ever before in our modern society. Whenever a marriage relationship finds itself in difficult circumstances there you will also find the world, the enemy, whispering into the ears of those involved that there is an easier way out. And, that the grass is greener on the other side. Is this what God’s will for marriage, for the family, and for society is though?
When we begin to open God’s Word and study what the Lord has to say about marriage we will begin to see that the marriage relationship is not simply the foundational building block of human relationships, it is actually one of the most important and impactful ways in which God has chosen to reveal Himself to mankind. In Ephesians chapter 5 we see Paul use the relationship between husband and wife as an example of the relationship between Christ and His Church. I believe that we would all say that the desire of Christ to for us to grow closer to Him and become intimate with Him. Thus, the desire of the Lord for husband and wife is that they constantly be growing closer to one another. To constantly be learning about each other and seeking more of each other. How many marriages are truly like this today? How can we foster greater intimacy in our marriages and seek to truly be the example of Christ and His Church to the people who see us?
While there is a significant amount of content in the Bible concerning the marriage relationship from which we could draw, I have put together six activities which I believe a marriage relationship should be actively engaged in and pursuing.
Studying the Word of God
Husband and wife should be spending time daily reading the Word of God together and then discussing it. We should ask ourselves, what is the Holy Spirit saying to us? How can we apply what we have learned to our marriage, our family, and the other areas of our lives? Husband and wife should also be encouraging each other to spend time individually in the Word as well. This then provides an additional opportunity for sharing with each other as they can convey the what the Lord is speaking to them and teaching them in their own personal time.
Husband and wife should be spending time each day in prayer both together and also individually. This is an opportunity for them to share the things that they are worried about or that are bothering them with each other. This is an opportunity for them to share their heart, as one, with the Lord. They can lift of their children, their neighbors, their extended family, their work life, their government, and whatever else the Holy Spirit may place upon their hearts. This is also a vital way in which the Lord will speak His truth and direction back to the family as well.
There is no doubt that husband and wife should be attending church together and worshiping corporately together. But worship is not confined to Sunday mornings or other church gathering. Worship should be a part of our everyday life. Worshipping can happen everyday no matter where you are at or what you are doing. It may involve music, it may involve art, it may involve cleaning the house or working in the yard, but whenever give glory, honor, and praise to the Lord and recognize that He is the King of kings and the Lord of lords, we are worshipping. That the heart of worship and husband and wife should be seeking to share that heart with each other.
This activity may be very basic and straight forward however, in the world we live in today and the pace with which each day goes by, often times a husband and wife and go through an entire day and never have a real conversation. Each day, husband and wife should be communicating with each other and sharing the things that are taking place in their lives. They should be discussing the situations that they are facing, the fears that they have, the issues that are bothering them, and the plans that they have for the future. Without this constant and deep communication, they will begin to think individually and in time, they will begin to act as individuals rather than as one.
Spending Time With Each Other
There is nothing that can replace time spent with each other. As husband and wife spend time with each other they learn more and more about each other. In addition, they create memories that only they share. Spending time with each other and creating memories with each other brings a different level of intimacy into the marriage relationship. This process should never stop. No matter if a couple has been married six months or sixty years, they should always be seeking to spend as much time as possible with each, creating new memories along the way.
Working together may not seem as intuitive as the first five however, performing work together is exactly what God has called husband and wife to do. This is not referring to husband and wife working together at the same employer, but instead that they approach the work of life together, as one. They care for the family together and care for the home together. Husband and wife should also seek to serve the Lord and His people together as well. This may be leading a Bible study together, volunteering at a charity together, or going on a mission trip together. Whenever possible, husband and wife should be working along side each other for the Lord.
My desire is that as you have read through these areas you have, like me, taken time to examine your marriage and ask yourself if you are indeed doing these things together. This may be a time when you have the face a hard truth about your marriage and realize that you need to make some changes. Maybe it is the time to begin to pray together, or talk together, or seek the Lord together. Whatever it is that the Holy Spirit has revealed to you, on thing is for certain, nothing will change if you do not do what the Lord is asking you to do.