It may be uncomfortable at first for some couples to begin to pray together, but I encourage you to push through. It may also be necessary to dig up the past to move forward. This is what my husband and I have needed to do. Some men and women must go back into their past and deal with issues to release feelings and emotions they have suppressed. I focus on men more here, because they are conditioned to internalize their feelings. They need to express the pain they feel and resolve it. A breakthrough is necessary.
So what is the biblical purpose of marriage? How should the ideal marriage appear? We will need to take a trip into the minds and behaviors of men and women to find this answer.
Why did God create this institution to begin with? “It is not good for man to be alone.” Is it just that simple?
Genesis 2:18-24 reveals that God’s work wasn’t finished until He formed the woman. It would have been no problem for God to have made her just like Adam, from the dust of the ground. Perhaps this is why men and women are so different, because one was made from the dirt while the other was made from bone and flesh. But together, when they are joined, they become one. A union is formed. And dotted all throughout the Scriptures, we read God takes this union seriously. In flesh. In spirit.
Three things need to be acted out in order to fulfill this union. The couple leave the authority of their parents and commit to one another; they agree to love each other above all else; they become one flesh by intimately consecrating their marriage. To have a healthy marriage, I need all three of these. Permanently. Marriage is to be forever.
Hebrews 13:4 reveals that marriage is honorable. It is through romance in a marriage that I can flee from being tempted. Song of Solomon shares intimately this idea. And Proverbs 18:22 promises that when a man finds a wife, he will obtain favor from God.
There is something key about this. One piece of advice I actually heeded was this one: to let the man chase me. If he wasn’t trying to get my attention, I would not long maintain it if I sought it. It is good for a woman’s self-worth for her to be pursued. This is the natural design.
This means not to call a man or make first contact. And I am not speaking about being pursued for sex. There is no foundation in this in any relationship. It is mandate that the woman protect the mind of the man she love by dressing in a modest fashion and not speaking perversely, not adding to the temptation that is naturally there. If a man loves a woman selflessly, he will protect her by keeping her from being defiled.
If this is broken before marriage, the foundation of the relationship is cracked. This is often revealed through the behaviors of the husband and wife. He will spend the rest of his days making it up to her by buying her things or giving into her way; she will bury her resentment and become angry and irrational. There will arise big arguments over small things. Only by recognizing this can a couple move forward and get the help they need. Usually, it starts with confession and asking for forgiveness. In reality, the man has broken the bond of trust by helping the woman to feel vulnerable. Lots of time is needed for healing and repairing this bridge. Trust needs to be reestablished. Premarital sex is like a loaded gun. It goes back to that old saying, “lust breeds hatred.”
Above is an excerpt, or book sample, from a chapter in my book What Every Woman Should Know, called Temporary Insanity. This text is meant to edify Christians in their marriages and to offer some simple steps to recovery. I in no way profess to be a marriage counsellor or expert. But I did wish to put out there the things I have learned in my studies, because it has helped me and I pray it will help you too. My next few posts will continue with sample from this chapter to give further insight.
Watch this space for Part 4.
Written by Jori Sams