Marriage is under attack like never before, and I'm not even talking about from the homosexual community. I'm simply talking about marriage inside the church is under attack. The devil knows that if he can get Christian marriages off course and get couples distracted by petty arguments and fights that he can veer them off course from their main objective. The main objective for a Christian couple is to model Jesus Christ to the lost world around them, and to others in their circle of influence. Jesus created marriage as a picture of his love for the church. So our marriages should reflect a bigger message!
What are some ways that we as Christians can stay focused on that bigger message?
1. Be aware of the attacks as they come.
Be sober-minded; be watchful. Your adversary the devil prowls around like a roaring lion, seeking someone to devour. 1 Peter 5:8
A solider is going to always keep on alert. He will never let his guard down. Why? Because he knows the second he does, that the enemy will pounce. There is no difference in the Christian world. Our enemy is always looking for weakness so that he can pounce and devour. Stay alert! Be on guard! Especially in your marriage.
2. Be on mission together.
Only let your manner of life be worthy of the gospel of Christ, so that whether I come and see you or am absent, I may hear of you that you are standing firm in one spirit, with one mind striving side by side for the faith of the gospel, Phil 1:27
We need husbands and wives who have a gospel-centered mind-set together! They need to be both be of 'one mind striving side by side for the faith of the gospel.' Couples who are viewing their calling as a couple who belong to Jesus fight MUCH less and argue less because they are both focused on the mission of getting the gospel of Jesus Christ out to the world. You see, they don't' have time to focus on each other flaws because they are busy being on a gospel-centered mission.
3. Be committed to local church together.
24 And let us consider how to stir up one another to love and good works, 25 not neglecting to meet together, as is the habit of some, but encouraging one another, and all the more as you see the Day drawing near. Hebrews 10:24-25
Historically, if you look at couples that have strong ties to a local church and are committed to a particular church their marriages are stronger. They are apart of a community that brings real community and accountability as well as fellowship with other believers who are on the same mission. Couples who are not very committed to a biblical community, their relationship lacks depth and actual meaning. And sadly what happens many times is that each person in the marriage starts to put their energy and focus on things that really don't matter in terms of eternity. Which will in tern bring a lot of frustration in the marriage.
Now I know and understand that we are all humans and that sometimes we sin and mess up. But this is where GRACE has to be active in our lives. We need to be willing to give and accept grace from each other as husband and wives. When we fail to be quick to ask for forgiveness and be quick to give forgiveness out. In other words, keep short accounts of each other's flaws and wrongdoings (just like Jesus does for you and I.)
When we start to live this way we let the world know that the Gospel is alive and active in our daily lives and marriages.