Weddings and awkward moments aren’t supposed to go together but when the groom faints and falls on the pastor, the top tier of the cake lands on the floor, or the bride falls into the water . . . it’s awkward!
. . . like at the wedding last week . . . I didn’t mean to create an awkward moment but, the groom was looking into my face with disbelief as if I had just pronounced some ancient curse over his marriage.
Did he just say what I think he said? Did he just say he hopes we have a normal Christian marriage? Normal? Who wants “normal”???
Everyone knows at weddings you’re supposed to say kind, hopeful, even smarmy things. What I was thinking didn’t fit neatly in those categories – but that didn’t keep me from putting my hands on the shoulders of the bride and groom, looking deeply into their eyses and sincerely saying, “I wish for you a Normal Christian Marriage”.
The new husband didn’t say anything but his reaction was etched in his face: Really? You hope we have a normal Christian marriage? Nice! Sounds more like a root canal without anesthetic than a blessing.
You can’t blame him. Who wants “normal” on their wedding day . . . on any day? Let’s be real – what you commonly see in many Christian marriages these days just isn’t that great. So, who wants that?
It was the bride (she knows me pretty well) who broke the awkward silence contorting her new husband’s face. “Don’t worry! He’s going somewhere with this.”
The fact is, I couldn’t think of a more awesome, beautiful, encouraging blessing to speak over the newly established oneness between this fine young man and this lovely woman during the evening something new and sacred was brought into being. The two had become one.
Surrounded with mediocre marriages, it’s understandable that we would confuse what is common with what is normal. As believers, we need to remember that our experience doesn’t dictate what is normal. God decides what is normal. And “normal” according to Him is totally amazing.
And, what is that? What is a normal Christian marriage?
Well, the story began long ago in a garden where a man and a woman lived in harmony, enjoying each other’s company, communing with God. There were no shadows, no secrets – not even any clothes – between them . . . only perfect unity, closeness, and fulfillment.
. . . the Garden of Eden – God’s idea of ‘normal’ . . .
The next time we see God’s full-throated expression of love between husband and wife is in the Song of Songs – enjoying each other’s body, romantic, uninhibited, singular devotion, and unwavering commitment.
. . . God’s idea of ‘normal’ . . .
And then we encounter God’s further revelation in the New Testament where He says that the husband will love his wife and will lay down his life for her as Jesus loved and gave himself for the Church – the husband treating his wife as Jesus Christ treats His Bride. The wife, reverences him and yields to her husband’s leadership – a position given by God and for which God will hold him accountable.
In this beautiful order, the husband and wife find a rich, fulfilling, loving, respect-filled, close, joyful, unity for life – a safe place to be one in every respect.
. . . God’s idea of a ‘normal Christian marriage’ . . .
The awkward moment was swept away by the approving smile spreading across the face of the new husband and his beautiful bride.
Yes, that’s what we want . . . a normal Christian Marriage!
Is that how you are living? Do you have – or do you desire – a normal Christian marriage? And, the present state of your marriage doesn’t matter. You can have an excellent marriage because of one, simple fact.
The truth of every marriage is that, no matter what the condition of your marriage today, if both of you will yield your hearts to God and commit to living out your marriage according to His instructions found in The Word, you will enjoy a marriage that is uncommon in this world, but completely normal according to the One who makes “normal” something the world can only marvel at.
Marriage won’t always be easy because we still have to put down our sinful inclinations but, marriage done God’s way is always successful, deeply fulfilling, and a whole lot of fun.
And that is why I wish for that young couple – and for you – a normal Christian Marriage. If you’re looking for help with next steps to your own amazing marriage, click the link below for a powerful, yet simple resource will immediately bring transformation to you and your spouse.
Matt is married to Lisa Jacobson; they are raising their eight children in the Pacific Northwest. Matthew is an author, speaker, blogger, and pastor of Tumalo Bible Fellowship. Matthew and Lisa are also the authors of the best-selling “his-and-her” marriage books, 100 Ways to Love Your Husband and 100 Ways to Love Your Wife.