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How did they live happily ever after when happiness can be so fleeting and relative? Books have been written, movies have been made, songs, seminars and more have been created around this central idea of how to achieve happiness.
And for those who are married, the call to serve your spouse is even greater. After all, marriage was created by God, instituted by Him to reflect His own relationship not only between Christ and the Church, but also within the Trinity. Husbands are called to lay down their lives for their wives — just as Christ laid down his life for the Church. And wives are called to submit to their husbands — just as Christ submitted to the will of His Father, and just as the Church follows that Christlike example by submitting to Jesus.
Sacrificially submitting to and serving one another is hardly what our culture talks about when they refer to "happily ever after," but the proven by-product of such sacrifice is, in fact, happiness. It is the joy that comes from giving joy, from loving another person in a costly way.
However, Keller explains, the problem is that the "main barrier to the development of a servant heart in marriage is. Until God has the proper place in my life, I will always be complaining that my spouse is not loving me well enough, not respecting me enough, not supporting me enough.
But once you realize that God is the one who will be fulfilling your needs and God is the one to whom you look for sustenance, you will be better equipped to serve your spouse. But how is this practically seen in the day-to-day? According to Keller, this remaking is seen in the continual combination of three things: the power of truth, the power of love and the power of grace.
This can be a discouraging and even frightening concept. The sheen that we put on during our dating and newlywed years wears off and the truth of ourselves is plain to see — for both our spouse and ourselves. While some may be tempted to look for someone better after that sheen wears off, Christians know that person is their spouse.
While the power of truth seems like a good thing in theory, in practice it can often be hurtful — if truth is shared separate from love. One of the best ways to show your love to your spouse is to learn how they see and receive love. Then we can come to know and face who we are and grow. Truth and love are powerful when kept together, but keeping them together is what so many of us struggle with.
The solution, Keller notes, is found once again in Christ:. The solution is grace. Only if we are very good at forgiving and very good at repenting can truth and love be kept together. In a Focus on the Family broadcast entitled " Becoming the Family You Want to Be ," Gary Chapman explains that about three years into his marriage, he felt God convict him of demanding service from his wife instead of acting in service toward her.
And marriage has unique power to show us the grace of what God did for us in Jesus Christ. If you liked this article and would like to go deeper, we have some helpful resources below. Free advice on marriage, parenting and Christian living delivered straight to your inbox. Get Involved Pray for us Share your story Make a donation. Support Focus Help us reach families across Canada Reasons to give. We recommend. More from Focus. How to serve your spouse in truth, love and grace Written by Amy Van Veen. Themes covered Marriage Faith and marriage.
The sentiment "and they lived happily ever after" never seems to include the how. What Christian marriage looks like After all, marriage was created by God, instituted by Him to reflect His own relationship not only between Christ and the Church, but also within the Trinity.
Power of love While the power of truth seems like a good thing in theory, in practice it can often be hurtful — if truth is shared separate from love. Power of grace Truth and love are powerful when kept together, but keeping them together is what so many of us struggle with.
The solution, Keller notes, is found once again in Christ: "Truth without love ruins the oneness, and love without truth gives the illusion of unity but actually stops the journey and the growth. And the path to this kind of reflection of His glory is by reflecting His attitude of service. All rights reserved. Continue reading. We're here to help All services Our impact.How to serve your wife
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How to Serve Your Spouse