Tag Archives: Marriage

Doing it Daily – All Over Again

There’s this beautiful song by Train called “Marry Me.”  Perhaps you’ve heard it.  Although it was released in 2009, it was 2013 before I heard it for the first time.

I love the line, “Marry me, today and every day.”  We get married (hopefully just once), and we have that one wedding where we make promises to each other in front of an officiant, God, family, and friends.  There’s music, there are flowers, there’s cake, maybe dancing, and it’s a glorious affair with people looking tres belle and tres beau.  Afterwards comes the honeymoon, a delightful period of romance and spending time together as husband and wife in a great location.

But what happens after the couple comes home, unpacks, and gets back to the day-to-day business of being a married couple every single day in the real world – a world without the flowers, the music, the cake, the honeymoon?  Unlike the pink-edged cream rose I have growing in front of my house, marriages don’t thrive on neglect.  They need daily attention and devotion, as do spouses.

This has to be intentional, though.  We can’t give our marriages our attention today and come back to it in a week-and-a-half.  My husband and I have a routine.  I don’t mind drinking day-old coffee.  Sure, I prefer it fresh, but I’d rather not waste it.  On Saturdays, I pour myself the day-old cup and make fresh for him; on Sundays, he gives himself the old cup and makes fresh for me.  This weekend, though, he did something different for me.  I woke up yesterday and poured the old coffee into my cup before making the fresh pot.  When I went back to the kitchen a little while later, my coffee was missing.  The cup was still there, but it was empty.  My husband had poured the day-old coffee into his cup.  He did that this morning, too.  It’s a tiny little act of service (my love language), but it made a huge impact.  Likewise, each day, I tell him something great I’ve observed about him or something perhaps that the girls have remarked on.  The key isn’t about being flashy or loud in the affirmations, it’s simply about being consistent.  As a result of these little acts – just small little things – we have grown closer and we have become more solid as a couple.

Discipleship requires just as much intentional daily attention.  Jesus says in Luke that if we’re going to follow him, we must take up our crosses daily and follow him.  As this call to the spiritual discipline of evangelism fell on my ears, as we read the corporate prayer of confession in church this morning, it hit me that I really don’t do as much as I’m supposed to.  I don’t  enter into a time of confession of my sins on a daily basis.  I also take the Gospel for granted.  I know it.  I’ve read it (multiple times), studied it, taught it, and preached it.  In fact, because I know it so well, the story isn’t fresh and new, this Good News more something I might meet with the excitement of my tax refund showing up than with joy that rivals fireworks, because, people, this is GOOD NEWS!  The BEST news!  It’s not exclusive, judgemental, or condemning.  This gift is for EVERYone, and I’ll open my arms wide and share it with absolutely everyone.

God loves us, has loved us from the beginning of time.  In fact, God loves us so much that God became incarnate in Jesus Christ and came down to earth to suffer the just punishment for our sins.  And when we accept this free gift of grace, we have eternal life.  No, it’s not physical immortality; our flesh will still age and die.  It’s spiritual immortality – our souls uniting with God in Heaven.  This is the good news.

And each and every day, I need to remember this good news, remember how it’s impacted my life, remember what it has called me to do with it, remember to share it.  Every day, I need to be intentional about devoting myself anew to the Lord, just as I do my husband, and publicly sharing my love for God, just as I publicly share my love for my husband.

Share your story.  Share the good news this week – how God has worked in your life.

 

Why I’m Voting Against

North Carolina State Line: Warren County

North Carolina State Line: Warren County (Photo credit: taberandrew)

I’m going to dare to tackle a very controversial issue – that of North Carolina’s Amendment One.  This amendment would deny rights to unmarried couples of all orientations that married people currently have.    These rights include:  The freedom to speak to a partner’s health care wishes; the right of both partners to maintain guardianship over their children; and the right of domestic partners to seek legal protection in the case of abuse.

Who are these people who should enjoy these rights?  The defeat of this amendment would grant these rights to pretty much all unmarried people living in domestic partnerships currently and going forward.  If Amendment One were to pass, then here are some of the “social advances” we can anticipate:

  • Children born to unmarried partners could be removed from their parents and placed into foster care, further burdening a system inundated with children.
  • Abused partners in domestic partnerships would have no protection under the laws of the state.
  • Senior citizens who are living together in order to protect their full pension and Social Security benefits would risk losing part of their benefits.
  • Unwed partners would be unable to speak for each other’s health care wishes.

There have been a lot of conservative Christians coming out and speaking for Amendment One, but I am unsure how anyone can call themselves a Christ-follower and support the sheer lack of compassion inherent in this bill.  Have we become so horrendously legalistic that we have to have a law that says we don’t care about the welfare and rights of a large percentage of the state’s population?

Those who are ignorant of exactly what this law entails argue that Amendment One “protects marriage” by not allowing homosexuals to marry.  That’s not even an issue in this law.  In North Carolina, it is already illegal for homosexuals to marry, and the defeat of Amendment One would not overrule that law.  What the defeat would do is grant domestic abuse protection for those in these unions.  The defeat of the bill would enable one partner to speak on their loved one’s behalf in the event of a medical situation, and it would protect their families if there are children in the home.

In the months since Amendment One passed through our state’s General Assembly, I’ve heard some of the most ridiculous statements:

“If Amendment One doesn’t pass, then gays would be able to get married.”  I’ve already addressed that one.

“If Amendment One fails, then gays having rights would threaten the faith of this great state.”  Huh?  One, there is no “state faith“; two, if a mere law can present a threat to your faith, then you’ve got some serious issues already that have nothing to do with the rights of others.

“Gays getting married are a threat to the institution of marriage.”  Am I the only one who thinks this is one of the stupidest statements ever?  As I’ve previously stated, homosexual marriage is already illegal in North Carolina.  Can someone please explain to me how two people who love each other and are committed to each other can threaten that love and commitment for everyone else?  This sort of goes back to what I said about gay marriage being a threat to the faith of North Carolinians.  If two people living together and loving each other present a threat to your marriage, then your marriage has very serious issues already that no law would impact.  However, since this bill isn’t about gay marriage at all, this point is moot.

I encourage all those who strive to live and love as Jesus would to VOTE AGAINST Amendment One.  Jesus told us to love everyone and to judge no one.  The defeat of Amendment One would show Christ’s love and compassion to so many North Carolina citizens, from the very young to the very old.  It would also show the compassion and love of Jesus to the vulnerable and the sick, those very people to whom Jesus said we should show his love.