Find a Savior Who Looks at You Like He’d Die For You

5661613189_65be533432_bLife has a way of breaking down your categories. You leave home and discover that Christians aren’t always decent people, nor atheists villains. You get a job and find out that some of the people out there with the foulest mouths and quickest tempers also have the very biggest hearts. You go through an election cycle. I’ll say no more about that. Whatever the case, our black-and-white definitions of things and people are constantly being broken down by life. It’s really a huge favor, if you think about it.

Same thing with marriage.

I’ve longed to be married for quite a while. I have many friends who can say the same. The world around me, too, seems convinced that this is the answer. You can tell by what they say, what they post, what they pursue. They just don’t talk about anything else. “Find a man who looks at you like…”

And so on.

(To be clear, I am not looking for a man. I threw that picture up because I know the single ladies are reading.)

Yet my views on marriage – what it’s like, how well I’ll perform, what it will do for me, whether that last part is even something I should be focused on – have evolved over the years.

For one thing, I’ve…

No, wait. Stick with me. I know you sense another “It’s not all about marriage” post coming and you don’t want to hear it. But I won’t be long. This is important.

I’ve been privileged to watch my friends get married, and you just can’t be friends with such people for long without learning a few unpleasant truths about matrimony. Even when your friends are the very best people. (Seriously, you are all missing out by not having friends like mine. But I digress.)

For another thing, I’ve had people tell me straight up: marriage isn’t what you think it will be.

Some of those figures have been older Christian women, “second mom” figures of a sort, who are willing to let slip a few disappointing moments here and there in order to break down my categories.

They don’t rag on their husbands, of course. They know that’s not right. We’re talking upright, well-known, successful women – Proverbs 31 across the board – who are quite content with the mate God chose for them and would not have chosen differently. And I doubt I’ve heard anything close to the worst moments of those marriages. (Indeed, some of the husbands involved have been quite willing to share worse.)

And yet they are disappointed. Or were at one point.

Because of child bereavement that walls a couple off from each other.

Or life-draining pornography addictions, discovered just weeks after the wedding, that cut an infant marriage off at the knees.

Or parties where one partner finds herself alone and misunderstood surrounded by friends, and nothing the husband says seems to help.

Or the incessant, suffocating busyness.

Every married couple, I have read, has asked at least once in their life, “Why did I even bother getting married?”, and that until you do, you don’t truly see the role of matrimony. The look of delight doesn’t stay on Elon’s face – or on the face of the one in love. Rockets and romance crash.

But it does stay on the face of Jesus.

Husbands, love your wives, just as Christ also loved the church and gave Himself up for her, so that He might sanctify her, having cleansed her by the washing of water with the word, that He might present to Himself the church in all her glory, having no spot or wrinkle or any such thing; but that she would be holy and blameless. (Ephesians 5:25-27)

It’s been said that our human relationships are mere reflections of God’s multi-faceted love for us. Throughout Scripture, we see his parental love in the delight of new parents as they hold their newborn; we hear of “a friend who sticks closer than a brother” (Proverbs 18:24); we see God as the benevolent master who treats his servants, us, with far greater dignity and care than we deserve.

But when we are called his bridegroom, does that not suggest his delight in his redeemed? Does not a groom’s face light with enjoyment as his bride-to-be pads down the aisle?

But God proves His own love for us in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us! (Romans 5:8)

Despite our sin, despite our status as enemies of God, he came for us and rescued us. It’s something that no spouse or human relationship will ever be able to do.

Some of us singles really are committed to the idea that romance will fix things – and that only romance will. Or at least be a vast improvement over what we have. It will disappoint us. At some point, it really will. So says every one who has ever done it. We might be wise to listen.

But as the years pass, I do become more convinced of the fierce, determined, attentive, passionate love of God for me. It is not a cliche. It is not a consolation prize. It does not hinge on something so volatile and unreliable as Brandon’s performance, but on his unchanging nature. It is not because I deserve it, but better – because it’s simply who he is.

And I become convinced of the assurance that it will never leave, never lessen, never cease being patient or kind, never take a day off or suffer hormonal withdrawal, never be cowed or darkened by tragedy…but always remain, always believe, always support, and always love.

Get yourself a Savior who does that.

13 thoughts on “Find a Savior Who Looks at You Like He’d Die For You

  1. Here’s advice from one of those Proverbs 31 women. I’ve been married to my high school sweetheart and best friend for 54 years. He’s the first and only man I’ve ever been intimate with. We’ve gone through some amazing highs and lows in those years. Marriage is a gift from God and requires a lot of hard work. There will be problems, but the vow you take on your wedding day is something you always hold true to. I have a 50 year old son who is not yet married. He would like to be, but the woman he’s chosen was divorced and is still unsure about marriage. I pray that someday they will meet at God’s altar and exchange their everlasting love to one another, but only God can make that happen. God is getting that perfect partner ready for you, Brandon. She will be just right for you and I know you will be right for her. Your day will come

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  2. The thing people often forget is that if you aren’t happy single you’re not going to be happy in a relationship. And true joy and contentment are found in Christ alone. When we long for loving relationship and even meaningful friendships, aren’t we really trying to fill the emptiness in our lives that can only be filled by God? Our human relationships will improve if we have a stronger relationship with God.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Love the meme. It made me chuckle. I am so grateful that God always extends His love…no matter what. I appreciate that you have married friends to show you what marriage really looks like (even the God fearing, God ordained ones.) It is truly composed of two broken people figuring out life together.

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  4. Marriage is something God uses to teach us to die to self. One old pastor called it “God’s heavenly sandpaper.” It sounds to me like you are on the right path to having a successful marriage someday. God bless.

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    • Heh. Funny thing is, I don’t have the luxury of marrying young while I’m ignorant of my flaws. Time and people interactions have already robbed me of so many delusions about how qualified I am to be a husband that I’ve been seriously second-guessing my readiness, something I’ve never done before. It’ll have to be God’s grace that gets me into that, and sustains me there.

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  5. This has been something I’ve been mulling over lately, so thank you for putting it into words! I was very much the teenage girl who thought marriage would fix all my loneliness and make me satisfied, but I know that’s not true. I’m coming to the realization that I’m not truly ready for a relationship until I find my satisfaction in Christ. Not that it’s something I’ll ever do perfectly, but if I run to anything else for my happiness, then even good things can become my god. So yes, how much better is Jesus’ love than anything else!

    Liked by 1 person

  6. Great post, and at least when that person comes along you will enter the relation with the right mind set. Because of sin there is no perfect marriage, it’s something that needs to be worked at. It’s hard work, but it also can bring much joy to your life when you have an understanding partner, one who is willing to compromise. If the partner is also walking with God, that is a big plus, because you have that in common and can have many beautiful discussions together.

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