Therefore let those who suffer according to God’s will entrust their souls to a faithful Creator while doing good.1 Peter 4:19 ESV
I think sometimes when we ponder marriage, particularly before the I do’s are said, many of us only envision the blissful moments ahead. We look at the man or woman we’ve chosen as the one and we can’t imagine the hardships or the struggles in front of us. We believe our love is enough to carry us through anything. Sadly, shortly after the gifts are opened and the honeymoon bags are unpacked, we discover just how challenging it can be to live with another broken person day after day. Add a pandemic that forces more time together with increased stress, and our marriages are being put to the test. Eventually, every marriage is going to struggle; eventually, every one of us are going to suffer.
It is critical to our marriages that we have a correct theology of suffering. We need to be ready for what’s coming by understanding God’s plan for us in the suffering. God tells us over and over in Scripture that we will suffer—it should be no surprise that things are challenging. Learning how to suffer well for Christ is how we find peace in our marriage.
There is such comfort for me in the reminder that we have entrusted our souls to a Creator who is faithful and who is good. Because we are God’s children, we can know our lives are never, ever out of control. It may seem chaotic at times, and there may be things happening that we can’t stop, but we can be sure we have a God who is sovereign over it all. Our God sees our marriage, He sees our heartache, He sees our challenges, and He reminds us if we suffer according to His will, everything will work out for good. Take heart. He has a plan.
Our stories have already been included in the greater redemption story of this world. God has a plan that is bigger than just us. He has promised to fix everything that sin has broken in this world, to reign over death, to establish a new heaven and earth, and to live there with us for all of eternity. We are part of that story. Your marriage is part of that story. We can trust that His sovereign hand is over our lives, and that He is working all things for the good of the greater plan. His story began before the world was created—we were included in His story long before we were formed. Our lives have meaning, purpose, and direction because we are part of a greater story. It doesn’t mean we will always understand what is happening, or know why we have to endure certain trials, but we can be confident that our story is part of His story…and His story is one of redemption and restoration.
Paul Tripp reminds us of this truth: “The inertia of redemption carries your story along. The goal of redemption guarantees your destiny. The future grace of eternity secures for you all the grace you will ever need in between.”
We can know that every relationship and every situation is ruled over by Christ. There is nothing that He doesn’t know or see happening in our lives. The best part is that we can know He rules over all of it for the good of the unstoppable redemption story. He rules over all of it for our own good, all so that His grace can finish the work in our hearts. Know that He is using this challenge in your marriage and in your heart to bring about His story in your life.
Press on ~ you are loved 💗