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  • Writer's picturePeter Clayton

Ephesians 5:31

Therefore a man shall leave his father and mother and hold fast to his wife, and the two shall become one flesh.

Paul quotes from Genesis Chapter 2 as the foundation for his understanding of the unique relationship between husband and wife. He also affirms Marriage as illustrative of the relationship between Christ and His Church.

Things don’t always work out according to our expectations and aspirations sadly; we know that only too well from within our own family. We are always aware of the grace, mercy and renewing power of our God, not least in challenging circumstances.

Last week I went to a pharmacy to collect some drugs. The pharmacist recognized my name and identified herself as someone who’s Marriage I had conducted about 25 years ago. It was immensely encouraging that she was able to affirm a fundamental bit of truth that I had explained during their Marriage preparation. I had pointed out that I would not be asking them whether they DO love one another, but whether they WILL love one another. Their answer would be “I WILL”. Clearly this had stuck, and it worked!

The Marriage relationship is a covenant, not an arrangement or anything of the sort, hence it is founded on promises and a commitment of the will. Of course feelings matter, as does passion and every expression of our relationships in Marriage. But a fundamental commitment of the will is of primary importance. Get this right, together with our common relationship with Christ and our openness to God’s grace, and we lay solid foundations. (RS)

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