Matthew 7:13 – 14 “Enter through the narrow gate. For wide is the gate and broad is the road that leads to destruction, and many enter through it. But small is the gate and narrow the road that leads to life, and only a few find it.”
This verse has been on my heart so much lately. I was thinking about it in terms of marriage. The divorce rates in this country are widely publicized as more than 50% of all marriages in America end up in divorce, but yet the wedding industry is booming. 1/2 of marriage fail the first time, yet many people put in a request for a wife swap or a do-over only to meet a more grim statistic of 67% failing. Still yet some people invest in the “third time’s the charm” way of thinking only to find out that 73% of third marriages fail. Luck won’t make marriages last.
People keep on doing marriage the same old way and getting the same crazy results. Then enters Matthew 7:13 – 14 There is a little unconventional less traveled road, then there is the big old interstate freeway. The little road is small, and not traveled often, so it is unpaved the bumps in the road are less visible, it may even look a little boring to the naked eye. The wide road is lit up, well paved, has a beautiful suspension bridge, signs all over that nobody pays attention to because there are so many. there are cool detours along the way, shops and stores to commemorate your time on the big road. All the attention is there because that is where everybody drives, everybody goes, everyone that’s anyone travels the big road.
There there is you. Standing at the cross section noticing the flow of traffic and the pull and lure to the big top circus of a wedding, when the narrow road is choosing a marriage. The signs are all flashing for saying yes to the dress, choosing caterers, location location location. The narrow road is asking you to think about what scriptures will govern your marriage forever. The broad road has stars, celebrities, reality shows, and even opportunities to win a few superficial prizes. The narrow road is simple and holds a path, that may be rocky, but leads to eternity.
When considering the joys of marriage – the broad way to prepare for marriage is to fantasize over being a bride, people swooning over you as you walk down the aisle. What they don’t tell you is that day comes and goes, then what are you left with. A wedding is an event. A marriage is a lifetime. You wonder why so many marriages fail? Its because couples hop on the big road, with everyone else. Instead of preparing on the narrow road, like not many do.
Prepare by praying (alone and together)
Submitting to wise counsel
Respecting the “no” of your counselors
Studying the Word to find out what it means to be married
Commit to times of fasting as a couple
Fellowship with a community of believers that invest in healthy marriages
Hold to a godly standard in the relationship
Focus on Christ’s purpose for bringing you together, and refuse to be distracted by the wedding.
Sounds strange? The narrow road usually does. – Choose forever!
There are never relationship counselors at bridal shows or divorce lawyers. No one wants to think of the problems that may occur, but it is so fun to look at the cakes, the djs, the lighting. None of which can heal a broken marriage or restore trust that has been shattered.
What is your marriage made of? What are your expectations for marriage? Are they rooted in the temporary things or are they anchored in eternity?
Leave a comment. What do you think is the best way to prepare for marriage?