Not long ago I was driving down a familiar road, passing by the same houses I’ve seen a hundred times. However, on this day I noticed something different. Because of the sharp curve in the road, one particular property is always quite noticeable. Well manicured, the large Victorian home is normally overshadowed with beautifully aged trees.
This time, as I slowed to take the curve, I had to take a double look. One of the grand tree limbs that normally swayed over the property was on the ground across the lawn. It had to be 40 feet in length and 18 inches thick!
Tree limbs fall, there’s nothing unusual about that. What caught my eye was the reason for the fallen limb. You see, that grand old tree, that seemingly withstood the elements for years upon years, had a secret. Although the tree looked strong and healthy from a distance, there was something wrong. This limb had fallen because it was only a facade of strength on the outside.
The inside of the tree was hollow.
It was only the shell that appeared strong. Because the massive tree had no substance, the limb broke, hitting the ground, shattering into shards of wood everywhere. This once stately tree didn't look as grand now. It would never be the same again.
My mind immediately went to marriage. What happens if a marriage is hollow? What happens to that marriage when the winds begin to blow?
The winds will blow, never doubt that! And when they do, the relationship can’t bear the intensity of the storm on just the appearance of a good marriage. We might fool some, seeming to have it together, but when difficulty comes our way, just like the limb, our marriage breaks apart, shattering before everyone.
But we do not have to resemble that tree. We do not have to be a great looking, yet empty shell of a couple, appearing that we have it all together, knowing we are really hollow.
We have a choice. We can choose to invest in our marriage. We can choose to feed, nurture and enrich our relationship, resulting in a marriage of substance and strength.
Let’s start the wheels turning, considering several relationship areas that might need to be fed.
The number one deficiency that will absolutely starve a marriage is the lack of putting God first in the relationship. This doesn’t mean attending church together or praying at the dinner table. It goes much deeper than this! We have two podcasts that will be beneficial to you and your spouse. Listen to Why Holiness and The Core in order to grasp the urgency of making God first.
Think about this. Is there any family member or friend that comes before your spouse? Is your job more important than quality time with one another?
Is there anything you are unwilling to surrender or change that is causing repeated arguments?
Do your kids see a different side of your marriage than outsiders see? Is there an appearance of bliss for the public that disappears behind closed doors?
Are there financial disagreements often between the two of you?
At times, do you feel you are moving in different directions, with different dreams and goals?
If you answered yes to any of the above scenarios, we encourage you to begin now strengthening those areas. Do not wait until the storm hits. Have conversations now. Learn to share your heart, respecting the other’s opinions and needs. If needed, reach out to a Godly couple further down the road than yourself. They can help.
“For this reason a man will leave his father and mother and be united to his wife, and the two will become one flesh.” Ephesians 5:31
God’s desire is for us all to have a Rock Solid marriage! It starts with Him, then working together as a team.
Seeking the Word,
Marriage by the Word
“Strengthen me according to Your Word.”