“Marriage is one of the closest ties that can bind any two humans together.”
“God has not only revealed my faults through this relationship, but His love has been magnified”
“The purpose for which God brings us into relationships with one another is that through it we might learn of Him.”
The Strange Blessing of Earthly Ties
by: Rochelle Mekowulu
Since sin entered the world and distorted mans view of Him, God has been hard at work to clear His name. He seeks through innumerable ways to reveal His true character. A character filled with love so incomprehensible that words fail to adequately describe it. So sublime that eternity is too short to fully grasp it. Because of the dullness of our minds to understand such an infinite concept, God in His wisdom has used earthly relationships as active parables to teach us of His love.
Marriage is one of the closest ties that can bind any two humans together. According to Ephesians 5, this great mystery of two becoming one is a representation of Christ and the Church. Now I’m not married but for over a year, I’ve been involved in a courtship, and though I am only seeing through a glass darkly, I am beginning to understand why this is so. I’ve always thought that it would be so easy to get to heaven if I didn’t have to deal with people. Why? Because sometimes when we rub up against others the friction that results is not pleasant. It reveals things in your character that you did not know existed or it magnifies things you thought you had overcome. It’s as though your sternum is cracked open and the beast that resides in it comes to life. Whether we acknowledge it or not there is a beast in us called self, and to slay it is the goal of the gospel of Christ.
Throughout this time of courtship, I’ve seen my sinfulness. I’ve seen traits in my character that sicken even me. Being in such close union with someone reveals much about whom you really are, the selfish way, the hidden pride, the stubborn attitude, the scars of the past, it all comes to light. And God would have it so because were it not so, we would believe we were ready for heaven even while headed to hell.
God has not only revealed my faults through this relationship, but His love has been magnified. Love as revealed in the Bible is not a sentimental, butterflies in the stomach, googly eyed thing. Rather it’s a principle and a choice that one makes. Love is being able to see past someone’s faults, inadequacies, and issues and still choose to love him or her. Still choose to move forward even though it might be easier to look for the exit. At times over the course of the year, when my own faults have disgusted me, I’ve thought, “mhmm, I wonder if he will stick around?” And then when he does, I’ve said, “mhmm, I wonder why does he stick around?”
In those moments I’ve come to appreciate my Heavenly Father even more. It was He who found me naked and broken and looked passed my sinfulness and chose to love me. I didn’t make it easy for God to love me. If the truth were told, I still don’t make it easy for Him to love me. But the love that He has for me is not circumstantial – it’s unconditional. It’s who He is. No, He’s not pleased when I fall and yes, it wounds His heart, but if I confess and repent, He is faithful to forgive. Through this courtship, I’ve seen the longsuffering of God. His compassion and tender mercies has been magnified in my eyes.
The purpose for which God brings us into relationships with one another is that through it we might learn of Him. Will this courtship result in a marriage? That’s up to my Heavenly Father. But God forbid that it doesn’t, I believe it would still have accomplished its purpose.
“God has bound our hearts to Him by unnumbered tokens in heaven and in earth. Through the things of nature, and the deepest and tenderest earthly ties that human hearts can know, He has sought to reveal Himself to us. Yet these but imperfectly represent His love.”(1)
1.Ellen G. White, Steps to Christ (Mountain View, California: Pacific Press Pub. Assn., 1892), 11