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Pastor Bob Sorensen brought the second message on Bible Marriages on Abraham and Sarah. All marriages go through certain stages beginning with the “Honeymoon stage” through to the “Golden Years” but in between somewhere in the middle years some problems that have not been addressed properly may lead to a crisis that threaten the marriage.
The problem might be a tendency on the part of either spouse to take the other for granted. It is a dangerous thing to think that you don’t need to give special attention to your spouse. Don’t assume too much. Show that you value the contribution of your spouse.
It is the middle years when physical problems are most likely to begin. With the process of aging may come loss of hearing, energy, and the waist line and the onset of arthritis and other ailments. The problem that Abram and Sarai faced was that Sarai was barren. Barren women were often seen as inferior. It was very important that a wife should bear a son. Abram had been told that he was to be the father of a great nation. How was this to be if he had no son. It was accepted in that culture for a wife to give her hand maid to her husband to provide an heir. Sarai took matters into her own hands and gave Hagar to Abram to obtain a son. When Hagar conceived she began to despise Sarai. What looked like a solution to Sarai’s problem, had developed into a greater problem.
There was a relational problem. Bringing another woman into the picture just added to the problem. The problem had not been that they had no son. The actual problem was that Abram and Sarai had doubted God. The birth of a child will not solve a relational problem. Failure to communicate, jealousies, favoritism, may divide a couple. Failure to wait on the Lord brought other problems. It was a lack of faith. Abram and Sarai failed to wait on the Lord. If God promises, He will deliver.
Marriages may be strained by emotional problems. He blames her, she blames him. Pride, selfishness, anger, unforgiveness may split a home. Seeking their own solution to the problem of getting an heir resulted in much bitterness. Things were never the same again in that home.
There is no instant prescription for a marriage in crisis. It may be necessary to seek godly council. The solution may be found with much prayer and searching out of God’s way and laying aside of bitterness. It is better to plan before a problem begins. A good marriage is based on more than luck or even love. God has a plan. The partners in a good marriage must learn to wait on the Lord.
The Biblical plan for a good marriage puts the husband in the position of leader. A good leader/husband does not overlook the psychological and emotional needs of his wife. With such a good leader/husband the wife accepts and rejoices in her position, confident in his concern for her. They both endeavor to find what makes the other “tick” and will also try to keep a neat and well groomed appearance for the other.
There will be a different perspective in the middle years. Expectations change with aging but romance need not die. A couple can develop a deeper relationship based in common interests and in a ministry together. Just taking time to be together, to communicate, can lead to a deeper relationship. The middle years of the marriage can be the most rewarding yet.