But God, I Want to be Married....
As long as I can remember, I have had the desire to be married. It's a pretty crazy thing to desire considering my parents weren't even married, so it's not like I had a beautiful example of what a God-ordained marriage would look like. I think it is natural to desire relationships, but the desire for deep intimate partnership is something that extends far beyond us. When I think of partnership in the Bible, I always come back to Adam and Eve. God shows us so much through their relationship and the Creation story. I have been diving deep into Genesis to really understand the function and intention of not only marriage, but God's design for men and women and how they are to work together. Let's talk about it.
Before God even created Adam and Eve, He was in relationship in what we know to be the Trinity (Father, Son, Holy Spirit). We see this in Genesis 1:26 when it says "Then God said, 'Let us make man in our image, after our likeness." This is something that for the longest time i just glossed over because it didn't seem super important to me, but as I look deeper into this chapter, I see that it is crucial information when it comes to understanding God's design for us. You see, because God was already in relationship, He didn't have a true need for us. He didn't create us out of necessity, He created us out of desire. He WANTED us. He wanted to be in relationship with us. When you begin to understand that on a deep level, it begins to change how you see God. Not as a harsh being who put us here to toil on the Earth, but as a loving Father who created us to be in relationship with Him. He loved us so much that He couldn't imagine being separated from us for all of eternity so He sent His one and only Son to die on our behalf. He desired a love with us that was our choice. He created us with the freedom to choose, not because He thought we would make only good decisions that glorified Him (I would argue that He knew we would likely fall short of making good decisions most of the time), but because His desire for us was to seek Him out and choose to be in relationship with Him out of our own desire and love for Him. This is important information to remember as we go deeper into the creation of Adam and Eve.
Before God created Adam, He made the Earth, the animals, night and day, the sea, vegetataion. Everything that we know of this Earth was created before Adam set foot on it. God prepared a place for Adam before bringing him and giving him purpose. God didn't just drop Adam onto barren land and say "Figure it out." He created Adam with the intention of giving Him a purpose. You see, before Adam had a person, he had a purpose. To work the earth, to be fruitful and multiply, to name the creatures. Working the Earth is not only hard physical labor, I believe God did this with so much intention. He was showing Adam how to nurture and care for things outside of himself. He was teaching him how to provide. Adam had to prepare not only the land for Eve, but himself. God didnt just drop Eve into nothing. He first skilled Adam on provision, intention, care, and relationships. Adam was walking in relationship with the Lord alone until God saw that he needed a companion to complete his work. I think when it comes to us, we can sometimes feel like "God, where is my person? Why am i walking alone when it feels like everyone around me is getting married?" It is not a punishment. God wants to walk alongside you alone. He has things to teach you before bringing another person into the mix. I love in Genesis 2:18 when it says, "It is not good for man to be alone; I will make him a helper fit for him." Fit for him. God made Eve with Adam in mind. He saw Adams strengths and weaknesses and made Eve to complement Adam. To be in relationship with him and bring something new to the table. I think it is also important to look at how Eve was formed. God could have easily scooped up some dust and created Eve like He did Adam, but He didn't. Genesis 2:21 describes how God put Adam to sleep and took one of His ribs to form Eve. This part excites me. In order for Adam to get Eve, God had to put Him to sleep. He had to become vulnerable. He had to lose something to gain something. God took one of his ribs. What is the significance of a rib? They protect your heart, help you breathe, help provide support. What is the significance of a WIFE. Support, protection over your heart, companionship. The rib was taken from his SIDE. His wife belongs at his SIDE. Your partner is not only an extension of God, they are an extension of YOU. You will complement each others purposes.
I love the concept of two becoming one. It shows you just how important it is to choose your person wisely and with so much discernment. In Genesis, God told Adam to not eat from the tree of knowledge of good and evil. He said this to Adam before Eve was even created. As a husband, you are the head. It is your job to be in direct communication and relationship with the Lord and lead your wife in a way that reflects that. So when Eve ate off the tree, who did God go to first? Adam. Because they were ONE, they were judged and punished together. You see why it is so important to be ONE with one who is going to lead you well. I think Ephesians sums this up so well. Ephesians 5:22-23 says "Wives, submit to your own husbands, as to the Lord. Fo the husband is the head of the wife even as Christ is the head of the Church." 5:25 "Husbands, love your wives, as Christ loved the church and gave himself up for her, that he might sanctify her, having cleansed her by the washing of water with the word." We see here God's directions for marriage. It tells wives to submit and husbands to love. Why? Wives submit out of not only devotion to their husband, but out of devotion to the Lord. If your husband is submitted to the Lord and leading you in light and love that comes directly from the Lord, it is a natural extension of your devotion to the Lord. Husbands are called to love. Not just any love. Love as Christ loved the church, in a sacrificial, unconditonal, you can't earn it kind of way. It is the most pure form of love there is. Because the husband is the head of the wife and directly submitted to the Lord, it is a natural extension of his love and devotion to the Lord to love and care for His wife in that way. It is also holding the husband accountable to his relationship with the Lord, because it is only by the strength and wisdom that you get from the Lord that you are able to love in a sacrifical way such as that.
I love the study of marriage because it takes away all the superficial stuff the world puts on it like the rings and the wedding and the fluff and gets down to the root and the intention of marriage. It is an honor to be in a God-ordained marriage and it should bring glory to Him. Your marriage should be a reflection of God's love and relationship with you. It should be a vessel you use to bring people to know the love of the Lord and how he intended for relationships to be. I know it can be hard to wait, trust me, I know. But it will be well worth it, of that, I am sure.
I love you.