“THe scariest thing a woman ever offers is to believe that she is worth pursuing, to open her heart up to pursuit, to continue to open up her heart and offer the beauty she holds inside, all the while fearing it will not e enough. The scariest thing a man ever chooses is to offer his strength without knowing how things will turn out. To take the risk of playing the man before the outcome is decided. To offer his heart of strength while fearing it will not be enough. A lie is going to come to both of you, starting very soon, in subtle and not so subtle ways. It can’t be done. It’s too hard. We had unrealistic expectations. It isn’t worth it. The lie to you, Megan, will be, ‘You are nothing more thana disappointment.’ And the lie to you, daniel, will be, ‘You are not really man enough for this.’ And so, I have two words for you today. Words that I want you to keep close in your hearts as you go forward. You are. Megan, you are radiant, you shimmer, ou shine, you are a treasure of a woman, a gem, you are. Daniel, you are a man, you are strong, and you are valiant. You have what it takes. HOld this close to your hearts. It can be done. And it is worth it.” (LaW 5-6)

While that statement may have come during a wedding cerimony, it was just as relevant to those observing the occasion as those participating in it. Those of us who are worn out, who are worried about tomorrow, about the next fight, or the secret we just can’t find a way to let out. So much of the wisdom contained in a marriage ceremony cannot be appreciated until we have a few years of real “life”under our belts.

“Father, we believe in you. We believe you are God, the creator of life and love and the only one who makes it all possible. We come to you, more esparate than we know, to ask your Presence here, your favor upon David and Megan, to ask your deepest blessing upon their marriage. Give them courage. Give them a clear heart and mind and will for all that they have just not pledged. And give to us, their witnesses, eyes to see and ears to hear what you are saying to each of us, through this passion play. et hope arise. Let love prevail. In the name of jesus Christ, our Lord, Amen.” (LaW Page 6-7)

It can be done. And it is worth it.26

Words… Love War Disappointment Desire

“How did I forget? Why is it so easy to lose sight of what is most deeply true?” (p. 24)

Is marriage as good as it gets, or is it part of something “bigger?”

The Bible begins with a marriage, and ends with a marraige. In the first chapters of the first book, right after God creates the universe… bam… man and woman. A couple. Not a man standing alone.Gen 2:21 – 25 – The Message

Revelation 21:1-2,9 … the climax of life on earth, the moment we’ve all been waiting for… ends with a marriage.

“Marriage ushered in the age of man in ENEsis, and now marriage ushers in the Kingdom of God” (26)

Read a short fairy tail about love?… kingdom hanging in the blance, evil advancing… what are they trying to tell us?

Devil: “you can’t trust god’s heart.”

but love is more powerful than satan thought. God will not abandon his beloved… even though we have abondeoned him. He comes for us. He fights to win us back.

How much God loves us: Is 42:13, 43:4-7

“Love never fails? It seems like the most failure prone thing on earth.” (29)

“God is telling a love story and the setting is war. This alone would orient you for the rest of your life if you really believed it.” (29)

not being alone – we need each other – eccl 4:9-12

The heart of a man ongs for a battle to fight, an adventure to live, and a beauty to rescue. Just look at the movies men loves and the games boys play. The heart of a woman longs for someone to fight for her, to play an irreplaceable role in the great adventure, and to offer beauty. Just look at the movies women love and the games little girlst play.” Notice how perfectly the desires of our hearts fit toether. Our souls are made for oneness in the same way our bide

“When I look back to the early years of our marriage, I think we both though tthe story was like this: ‘love god, love each other, and it’ll all work out!’ it was an extraordinarily naive view of the world, though and extraordinarily popular one. WHy is it that nearly every love story turns from a scenic romance into a desparate struggle? It is because that is the Story we find ourselves in. We are created to live in a great and terifying story, and a great and terrifying story is precicely whate wehave.” (32)

God gives us marriage to illustrate his heart towards us: headling, redemption, love… courage, sacrifice, blood sweat and tears. god is fighting for the hearts of hsi people.

“God is a great lover, and he created marriage to play out on this earth a daily, living, breathing portrait of the intimacy he longs for with his people. Gulp. This is why it has such a central role. It is a kind of incarnation, a passion playabout the love and union between Jesus and his beloved.” 34

Look at the stories God writes. THey are almost always stories of desparate battles against insumrountable odds by the most unlikely heros. And nearly always… there’s the last minute rescue. Noah, David and Goliah, Esther.

Has your marriage gone from being a covenant to being a peace accord? an agreement where you’ve both conceded a good deal of desire in exchange for smoother daily operations?

“We must regain a vision for our marriage. We must recovger the truth of the story we are living and the role we have been given to play. THe recovery of our mariage from the precipice of divorce and the courage to push through all sorts of obstacles and find something beautiful – all of this has come to us as we have come to understand and embrace the nature of the story we are living in.”

close with 37 – 38… the importance of your role in your mate’s life.

why is marriage hard? because it’s opposed.