Sacred Marriage by Gary Thomas
Whether you are just married, or have been married 30 years I feel there is something in this book for you. In Sacred Marriage, Gary Thomas questions our perspective of marriage in our lives, asking “What if God didn’t design marriage to be “easier”? What if God had an end in mind that went beyond our happiness, our comfort, and our desire to be infatuated and happy, as if the world were a perfect place? What if God designed marriage to make us holy more than to make us happy?”
Sacred Marriage covers many topics, ranging from: our motives for marriage, how to have a God-centered marriage, how to deal with contempt and the sin in our lives, to honoring and respecting your spouse and much more. The experience and wisdom he shares in this book is an amazing tool to have and has provided me with a renewed perspective on how to better handle difficult situations that can occur in a growing marriage.
He reminds us that even though your “spouse might be difficult to love at times,…that’s what marriage is for — to teach us how to love.” I think this is a great reminder, because honestly if we are unwilling to be sacrificial for our spouses and learn to love them through the difficult times, how are we going to respond to those we may love that are not our spouse? This brings us to how do we “view God – as a master or a husband?” I believe he is trying to teach us that by viewing our relationship with God as our husband, by treating our spouse with that same selfless, God-centered love, our marriage will honour and please God.
Here are a couple of my favourites quotes from the book:
“If my marriage contradicts my message, I have sabotaged the goal of my life, which is to be pleasing to Christ and to faithfully fulfill the ministry of reconciliation, proclaiming to the world the good news that we can be reconciled to God through Jesus Christ.”
If a young man pledged to give me 10 percent of his income, weekly praise, and even wrote songs about me but the rest of the time I knew he was making one of my daughters miserable through abuse or neglect, I’d have nothing to say to him except, “Hey, start treating my daughter better, and then we can talk. If you truly respect me, you’ll start treating her much better.”