Today marks 48 years of marriage for my parents,
JL and Belinda Weaver. 48 years! I remember thinking it was a really big deal when we celebrated their 25th year. Here we are 23 years later, and I still think it is a really big deal.
My parents got married during the month of love, but their years together have not been all candy and roses. There have been hard times, illnesses, fights, ministry-difficulties, parenting woes, you name it. My parents meant their vows (as well as they could) when they took them and I believe they mean them even more today. That’s how a marriage is supposed to work—You take the vows and then you keep the vows. You learn to mean them more as the years go by.
But it’s not always that simple. Marriage is a covenant relationship established by God where a man and a woman come together and they lay their own self-interests aside for the sake of the other. Both parties have to lay themselves down. I have seen the instances where only one person is keeping the vows. It’s painful and usually leads to an unfortunate end. Without that mutual submission, the marriage is less covenant and more like a contract. That is not keeping the vows and it certainly doesn’t honor God.
I’m grateful for parents who have modeled a marriage that lasts. It is not easy, but it’s worth it. It challenges me to look at how I’m keeping up my side of my marriage. Maybe you’ve blown it or walked through an unfortunate ending—I’m glad God loves us and uses us in spite of our failings.
So here’s to more marriages that last. But not just last for the sake of lasting. Here’s to marriages where our sacrificial love and commitment to each other grows deeper with every passing year. Here’s to growing closer to Jesus together. Here’s to meaning your vows more today than you did yesterday!
“Therefore a man shall leave his father and mother and hold fast to his wife, and the two shall become one flesh.” This mystery is profound, and I am saying that it refers to Christ and the church. However, let each one of you love his wife as himself, and let the wife see that she respects her husband. (Ephesians 5:31-33)