Marriage is not Hawaii 5-0

Matthew 5:13 You are the salt of the earth, but if salt has lost its taste, how shall its saltiness be restored? It is no longer good for anything except to be thrown out and trampled under people's feet.
When I married Scott, I believed God had given me a fairy tale life. Scott had rescued me and my two daughters from financial ruin and fulfilled my life-long dream of becoming a stay-at-home mom. I had a passionate love relationship with my husband. Why then did I feel so miserable? Overwhelming unhappiness was exacerbated by incomparable guilt. I shouldn't feel like this. I should be grateful for the vast, undeserved blessings God had given me. But I wasn't. In fact I was depressed and distressed. Having been divorced, I had first-hand knowledge of where this kind of misery leads - desolation. Today's passage is Matthew 5. Matthew 5-7 is commonly referred to as the "Sermon on the Mount" and is in fact the longest recorded sermon delivered by Jesus. Each verse is rich with challenge and life-change. Among this treasure trove of Jesus' wisdom are these words, "You are the salt of the earth, but if salt has lost its taste, how shall its saltiness be restored?" (Verse 13) There was a time in my marriage when my salty had become bland. I had come into my marriage expecting a fairy tale that I have come to call Hawaii 5-0. I thought my marriage would be a paradise. I also anticipated it would be fair and equitable. Hawaii 5-0. My marriage was neither. Then I read this question of Jesus in Matthew 5:13 and rephrased it in my mind like this. If today were your first date with Scott and you treated him exactly as you did today, would he ever ask you out for a second? The answer was no. In an instant I knew that I had been focusing on the ways I thought he should change. How might my marriage be revitalized if I stopped lasering on him and started concentrating on once again becoming the fun, salty girl he had married. When I shifted my focus from him to me, a miracle took place. The paradise I was chasing began to bloom in the ordinary moments where I chose to meet his needs instead of mine. When I ceased keeping score and began to serve him expecting nothing in return my marriage became better than equitable. I stopped huffing and asking for help and he began to help me voluntarily. Jesus, You know all to well that I am still tempted to focus my eyes on Scott when You still have so much work to do in me. Thank you for the blessing of marriage. There's no such thing as a fairy tale but that doesn't mean life can't be one. Today I choose to cast aside my expectations of perfection and fairness and seek to serve instead of being served.

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