Two become One
The unity candle in a marriage ceremony signifies two families, two individuals joining as one — for a lifetime. The importance of this union is often overlooked during the ceremony, but the reality remains beyond the wedding and honeymoon. No longer I, but we.
On Monday’s (Feb 2nd) Focus on the Family radio broadcast, Dr. Gary Smalley discussed with extreme clarity and practicality how to carry this beautiful and challenging reality into the everyday–and the long haul. He presented the need for grace (and honour) in marriage above all, which ultimately leads to increased unity between two very different people. The principles can be applied to other relationships as well, but seems we often ‘get’ or ‘do’ those better than our own marriages.
Grace needs to be applied daily to our marriage. In The Grace Awakening, Chuck Swindoll calls grace “the oil that lessens the friction in marriage.” This demonstration of grace should be mutual, extended by both parties to both parties, resulting in “mutual equality, mutual dignity, mutual humility, and mutual destiny.” While this may have been understood in days gone by, it seems more and more view marriage today as a matter of convenience and/or mood. When the benefits of the convenience or the mood wear out, so goes the marriage.
Grace brings lasting benefits into marriage, and the list below by Chuck Swindoll, is certainly not all-inclusive:
Grace loves and serves
gives and forgives,
keeps no record of wrong,
releases and affirms,
supports and encourages,
values the diginity of the other.
The Focus on the Family radio broadcast mentioned above presents very practical ways to show this kind of grace to one another. I’ve posted a summary at “Grace in Marriage-2“, but I still encourage all to listen, HERE for some well-rounded advise that all can use (even those of us married over 30 years!)