(written for the future bride of my nephew on August 4, 2018)
I have heard people caringly ask brides before the wedding day, “How do you know he’s the One?” Our culture tells us, if you find “the One,” then you can most certainly avoid broken vows and crushed dreams.
One of the Bible’s most romantic love stories is the account of Isaac and Rebekah, found in Genesis 24. If there were ever a situation in which God clearly said, “This is ‘the One’ you should marry!,” it was this couple. It was truly a match made in heaven. Fast-forward about 30 years. These star-crossed lovers are now parents of twin boys who despise each other. Isaac loves Esau, and Rebekah loves Jacob. We find this husband and wife in a web of manipulation, anger, and deceit. Finding “the One” certainly didn’t guarantee them a life-long, stress-free love affair. Selfishness and bitterness compromised their unconditional love, even though they were ordained by God to fall in love and marry.
So, Kayla, instead of focusing on the single question, “How do I know Sean is ‘the One’?”, I want you to consider these three questions, not just now but throughout your marriage to Sean:
Question #1. Am I in God’s will? Unfortunately, God does not reveal our entire life plan to us all at once. So instead of spinning your wheels trying to figure out what you don’t know, seek the truth about what God HAS revealed in His will for your life. As you grow in love through your marriage to Sean, God will continue to give you some very clear guidelines, such as 2 John 1:6 promises, “And this is love: that we walk in obedience to his commands.”
Question #2. Am I seeking wisdom? God leads through the wisdom of His word and those He has put in your life, so just ask for what you need. Solomon tells us in Proverbs that a wise person is open to feedback. As James 1:5 promises, “If any of you lacks wisdom, you should ask God, who gives generously to all without finding fault, and it will be given to you.”
Question #3. Am I realistic about marriage? The truth is, Kayla, … marital happiness isn’t solely based on finding ‘the One’, even though we know Sean is your one and only love based on the way he looks at you and only you. A strong marriage will depend largely on the work you both are willing to do in your marriage. Any couple that is willing to grow, to love, and to communicate through challenges can have a dynamic relationship. As 2 Peter 1:3 promises, “His divine power has given us everything we need for a godly life through our knowledge of him who called us by his own glory and goodness.”
Kayla, I want you to expect that marriage will be a tremendous gift, and one that will require unconditional love, lots of work and lasting commitment. Expect that along the way your concept of love will be refined. Expect that by leaning on the Lord, you will have everything you need to be a great wife to Sean.
A good marriage is not something you find, instead it’s something you make with the love and support from God, your family and your church community.
God, thank you for the gift of marriage and for the companionship that Kayla and Sean have found in each other. I pray that you will walk beside them and strengthen them for this life journey together. Let them daily remember the words from Ephesians 4:2, “Be completely humble and gentle; be patient, bearing with one another in love.” In Jesus’ name we pray, amen.