Today is the last do of the Just Write! campaign hosted by Mary Kathryn Tyson at Beauty of Ashes. The idea was to prompt us stuck creatives with a single word. MK would give us a one word prompt (much like Gypsy Mamas five minute Friday) and were to write for 5 unedited minutes. What has come out of this brain has been interesting. For the last day of this campaign, I am going to use MK’s prompt but write for as long as I like.
No one said coming together for a purpose was easy. People coming together in a church, a friendship, a project, or a marriage requires some sense of “we” and less sense of “me”. A sense of “we” means that one must put down one’s own ideas about how things should be. Growing together is a messy business because we all want our way. We want our ideas and needs to be higher than other’s ideas and needs. We want to be first and noticed and to get the credit. This is because people are inherently selfish.
One of Jesus’ great commands was to “love one another as I have loved you” (John 13:34). Jesus is the perfect example of what it means to be in unity with another person. He shares the responsibilities of the Godhead with the Holy Spirit and the Father. He did not put what he wanted first in his ministry and said “Very truly I tell you, the Son can do nothing by himself; he can do only what he sees his Father doing, because whatever the Father does the Son also does.” (John 5:19). Jesus did what was best for the team and for the recipients of his ministry.
Marriage is really no different. Two people coming together for the purpose of becoming one requires a lot of effort. Whether or not a marriage can survive this process depends on the attitudes of each person going into the relationship. Some people think of marriage as a agreement to live as separate entities with separate lives. While others think of marriage as being completely enmeshed in the other person. Either model produces unnecessary pain and suffering. And the pain becomes the focal point out which all interactions occur. Marriages tend to polarize when people become stuck in their views of the person. People forget why they got together in the first place. This is because marriage and partnership involves grafting and blending.
God intends for marriage to be a grafting process that blends together to separate and unique individuals. Jesus says that when we accept him as our savior, we are grafted into the vine that is God. Grafting involves cutting from one tree a cultivar, and cutting the host tree for a place to put the cultivar. This sounds a bit unpleasant. The beginning of a marriage, that is after the honeymoon, can be messy when one is confronted with all the realities of this other person. Yet, there is hope.
When a portion of one fruit tree is grafted into another fruit tree, a new species or variety of fruit is produced. The fruit of a well blended marriage is beautiful to behold. There is something special about a couple that weathered the worst of the grafting process. They look at each other with true friendship and love in their eyes. Their children exemplify the love that exists between. And most importantly, God is glorified.
Lord, make my marriage a beautiful