Kathy Keller: "You don't marry one woman or one man--but many."
Tim and Kathy Keller were on the radio today talking about marriage and marital intimacy. Tim is the pastor of Redeemer Presbyterian church in Manhattan-- a city in constant change. I was struck by something Kathy said, and thought I’d share it with you here in honor of Valentine’s Day. She states,
“You don’t marry one woman or one man—but many. Time, children, illness, age—all create changes that demand creative, honest responses to rebuild something that might have been effortless at an earlier time.”
In other words, your spouse at 65 is not the same man or woman they were at 25 or 45.
Kathy’s right. Even in my own short marriage (10 years in October) my wife and I have had to adapt to career changes, temporary health issues, parenthood, and more. The longer you’re married, the more things you have to adapt to. Yet the prospect of constant change is frightening. How can we know that we’ll both change at the same rate and in the same direction?
In Psalm 127:1 we find the answer, “Unless the LORD builds the house, its builders labor in vain.” It applies directly to our home lives. Jobs change, finances change, health changes. In the midst of this change, our Heavenly Father never changes. He’s the one constant that we return to each day (if not each moment). When I and my spouse are built on God, then our life together shares the same foundation. This is true not only in marriage but in every friendship and relationship. Relationships that last are built on a common foundation. Only when God is the builder do our own labors succeed.
Maybe you’re recently married. Maybe you’ve been a widow for many years. Maybe you’re wondering how much longer you can stand to be married! Wherever you are, I hope you’ll consider the foundation of our Great Builder-- our Lord Jesus Christ, as you celebrate every friendship and relationship this Valentine’s Day.
For audio or transcript of the Keller’s Message, visit: http://tinyurl.com/2eccm4v
A version of this article appeared in the February edition of "The Tie That Binds" Effingham Presbyterian newsletter.