Marriage: Loaded Words
I picked up the book from the shelf and started to read. I had read it before. Years ago. But, I wanted to come back to it. It was a book about marriage–having a successful marriage–despite the spiritual differences a couple might have.
But, this time, as I read, I became tense, immediately. What was it that bothered me? It was well written–certainly. Easy to read. But it was something else. I couldn’t put my finger on it. So, I put the book down.
This morning, I picked up the book again and started to read. This time, I knew the source of my tension: the author’s choice of words.
Loaded words. Words that seem harmless, but which carry negative emotions. Words, especially used in the context of marriage, that have a powerful message: you may not make it.
Surviving your marriage.
Managing your marriage.
The challenge of marriage.
Wow. How did I miss this the first time? Or, maybe, those words resonated with me the first time I read them–there were times when I wondered if I would ‘survive’ my marriage. And, certainly, marriage can be challenging. The first time I read this, maybe that is all I was looking for.
This time, the word ‘survival’ stirs up images of struggle, barely making it. Hopelessness. Maybe just ‘accepting’ marriage or ‘settling’ for it.
But, the gift of marriage is more than something to survive.
It is something that God beautifully created. Something that we long for–that we dream about when we are young. We yearn for the companionship and intimacy–beautiful intimacy–that marriage provides. That is the marriage God wants.
So, I close the book. I fold my hands. And, I turn to God to write the script.
Seek forgiveness, grace, and beauty.
Live fully and thankfully.