The Epoxy of God's Love
I broke a plate this week. Not just any plate; it was a large decorative plate that my husband and I received for a wedding gift. It was handmade and has our wedding date on it. Normally when a dish breaks; I will carefully clean up the pieces and off to the trash it goes. But this one I just couldn't bring myself to throw away. Out of all of our wedding gifts; it was the one that both my husband and I instantly loved and it has been displayed in our home for 11 years now.
It is shattered enough that to glue it back together would be a little obvious. Yet; I left it broken and shattered on the counter just to see if my husband might be able to epoxy it back together.
The household was busy when he arrived home and I didn't have a chance to mention it to him before he saw it. I knew instantly that he had when I heard him sadly say, "Oh no!" It was a tender expression filled with the understanding that we have three relatively small children who could have easily broken it while trying to "help out." After explaining that I was the one who had broken it; we both just stood there staring at these pieces of porcelain that have held such meaning to us both over the years.
The couple that had given it to us as a gift had long since been divorced. The husband had attempted to re-discover his youth with his secretary.
My husband proceeded to tell me that a couple that we have known for years was also heading for divorce. I was in shock. This was one of those couples that you automatically said both of their names when you talking about them.
It was a reminder to me that we need to be intentional about pursuing our spouses! There is no place in marriage where you no longer have to invest of yourself. You don't pass the 10 year mark, the 15 year mark, the 20 year mark, or in this couple's case; the 35 year mark, where you no longer have to keep guard over your heart and mind.
Those things are easier to do if our hearts and minds are fixed on Christ. But I believe it is fair to say that there are also times; seasons if you will, where we ebb and flow in our marriages and spiritually as well. We are on fire - growing, learning and passionate about living for God; and then gradually find ourselves having to awaken again to the things of God. Begin reading our Bible (either in a fresh meaningful way or at all), praying, and drawing near to God once again. It is often in those spiritually drowsy moments when our guard begins to drop and we allow ourselves to entertain temptation.
We are all tempted. But it is when we allow ourselves to entertain temptation that we end up either having to battle our way out mentally (and spiritually) or we fall.
We decided right then and there to fix the plate. It will probably be obvious that it has been glued; but it is also now symbolic to us both that we are going to fail at points in our marriage. There will be moments when something that I do or say will shatter my husband and vice-versa. But we are committed to picking up the pieces and asking God to epoxy us back together again through His love. Yes, maybe our marriage will be forever changed through those instances. Perhaps that "original beauty" will have been altered; but it is my prayer that our marriage will continue to grow more and more beautiful and meaningful - God epoxy and all.
"Submit yourselves, then, to God. Resist the devil, and he will flee from you. Come near to God and he will come near to you. Wash your hands, you sinners, and purify your hearts, you double-minded. Grieve, mourn and wail. Change your laughter to mourning and your joy to gloom. Humble yourselves before the Lord, and he will lift you up." James 4:7-10 (NIV)
I pray that we will rest in your healing and redemptive love for us. Please protect our hearts, minds, and marriages in the name of Jesus Christ.
Is your marriage in need of the healing blood of Jesus (the epoxy of God’s love?)
How can you pursue your spouse today?
Do you need to awaken again to the things of God?
Shanda lives near Washington D.C. with her wonderful husband of 11 years and their three precious children. She can be found at her personal blogspot; ateachableheart