"And above all put on love, which is the bond of perfection. And let the peace of God rule in your hearts, to which also you were called to live in one body, and be ye thankful." Colossians 3:14-15
These verses have helped me in my marriage more than any other verses. I feel that the keys to marriage are in these verses. Yes, in other places, Paul rights about the roles of man and wife, but I don't feel that defining roles is the key to keeping a marriage together. Important, yes, but not the key.
What has brought me to writing this post is a recent explosion of our friends and family getting divorced. In about 5 weeks we have heard of 7 couples splitting up. It's crazy. And it makes me wonder: When we (my husband and I) are having a hard time in our marriage, is anyone going to be left to tell us: "Stick with it, it's worth it, don't give up!" Or will everyone say: "I just moved on to the next best thing... you need change... it's not worth the trouble." Anyways, this is what has brought me to sharing these verses with you all today.
Here are the points I pull out of these verses, that remind me, what love towards my husband should look like:
1) "Put on Love" notice it doesn't say: feel the love, feelings of love, be in love... it says: Put on Love. Put it on. Choose it. I can choose not to have it, or choose to have it.
2) Perfection comes from love. I am not going to have a perfect marriage, because it's made up of imperfect people, who forget to love. But the more we love, the more perfect our marriage will get.
3) "Let the Peace of God reign in your hearts" Sometimes, ok, alot of times, I let anger, or bitterness, or discontentment reign in my heart. But peace should. If we are not striving for peace and peacefullness, havoc will reign. I know from my own experience, days when I choose to be discontent are days that are full of havoc. I didn't put this together until I read these verses, but I can spot it right away now. If things aren't going smoothly - do a heart check - that could be the problem.
4) "And be ye thankful" This is the crux of it all. The big mama. There are 10 million things for which I can (and often do) complain about. However, equal and usually greater in number are things for which I can be thankful about are always infront of me if I choose to see them. Often, and I can be a part of this sometimes, I hear complaints about husbands. Usually silly things... garbage not being taken out, clothes in the living room. And sometimes much bigger things - very valid complaints. But what happens when we choose to praise our husbands, not only to them, but in our day to day conversations with other women? Or in our prayers being thankful for him... that he comes home to us at night... that he loves us... that he's a good dad... that he we are not widows like so many others... for the table he helped me clear... for the time he took the kids outside to play so I could have a half hour to myself... for the spattering of his items throughout the house - becuase they are there due to the fact that he's busy, running here and there to help others, to help me, to work hard.
I highly recommend reading One Thousand Gifts by Ann Voskamp to get a better handle on thankfullness. It was an amazing book.
So thats my soap box for today... because everytime we get the news of another marriage failing, my heart hurts, and I wonder... do they know these verses? These secret keys?