Five surgeons are discussing who makes the best patients to operate on: The first surgeon says, "I like to see accountants on my operating table because when you open them up, everything inside is numbered."
The second responds, "Yeah, but you should try electricians! Everything inside them is color coded."
The third surgeon says, "No, I really think file clerks are the best, everything inside them is in alphabetical order."
The fourth surgeon chimes in with, "You know, I like construction workers. Those guys always understand when you have a few parts left over at the end and when the job takes longer than you said it would."
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WHEN TWO BECOME ONE
Some marriages may be made in heaven, but most of the details have to be worked out here on earth. Unfortunately, many couples enter marriage with little or no thought about how such a relationship is designed to work.
"I only married to get away from home, to get a house of my own and be independent," admitted a young woman named Jane. "My parents tried to talk me out of it, but you always think you know better."
Jane thought she was breaking from her parents. In reality, her marriage was only a contest to prove she knew best. She failed to develop a close bond with her husband, however, and "after six months I knew it was a mistake--even before my baby was born." Shortly afterward her marriage dissolved.
The names change, the circumstances vary, but the tragedy remains the same: Far too many marriages eventually end in divorce. A well-known Christian leader made this observation: "All of my counseling in marriage and family problems can be categorized on the basis of three situations: failure to truly leave the parents, failure to cleave to the one partner, or failure to develop a unified relationship."
Leave. Cleave. Unify. Moses, the Lord Jesus Christ, and later the apostle Paul all used these same three concepts to describe how God designed marriage to work. "For this reason a man will leave his father and mother and be united to his wife, and the two will become one flesh" (Mark 10:7-8).
Marriage involves leaving one's parents and clinging to our spouse. It is a total, intimate, exclusive union between a husband and his wife. But that's not all!
Christian marriage is really a triangle: a man, a woman, and Christ. My wife, Pat, committed her life to Christ at the age of eight. I was twelve when I made the same decision. When we joined our lives together, we did so in the presence of the Lord. He is the third party in our marriage. He is the One who keeps us together and draws us closer to each other as we seek to draw closer to Him.
God has designed man and woman to complement each other in the marital relationship--spiritually, intellectually, emotionally, volitionally, socially, and physically. Intimacy starts with spiritual oneness in Christ and eventually knits a couple together in every area of life. This takes time and commitment. But the rewards of such intimacy and oneness are fantastic!
"But, Luis," you say, "my spouse and I aren't experiencing that oneness in our marriage. In fact, sometimes I feel we don't even know each other. Often we disagree with each other or just go our separate ways. We're definitely not serving the Lord together. What should we do?"
When marital problems surface, don't run away from God. Instead, as God's servant, run to Him. Come to Christ. Lay the problem at His feet with your spouse.
Gather your spouse in your arms by your bedside. Open up your Bible, kneel together, read a passage, and talk about what it says. See what God's Word has to say about your situation. Then share your prayer requests and, together, talk to God about them. By doing this you will learn more about your spouse, and God will show you how two can become one--and grow yet closer every day.
Faith and love are apt to be spasmodic in the best of minds. Men and women live on the brink of mysteries and harmonies into which they never enter and with their hand on the doorlatch they die outside. GK Chesterton