Wednesday, February 23, 2011

If I Had It To Do Over Again

You don't.

Everybody would say they would be better off. "If I knew then what I know now..."

In a real sense no one ever gets a second chance. We have only one life to live. We may get second or third "opportunities" but only one life. Many of us live with regrets of our past that seem to choke our ability to live life today or even be hopeful for tomorrow. Everything we go through is another chapter in the growth of our life. They are all connected.

As Christians we believe that nothing in life is "coincidental." All things are part of God's mysterious plan for this world and for our lives in particular. He is not in the business of second chances but in giving new life. His desire is to bring new life through his Son and to make us look more like Jesus.

This is especially true in our marriages. Sure, we could be better husbands or wives if we had it to do over again.

We don't.

The primary purpose of our marriages is not to finally get it right but to look more and more like Jesus. Every season of our lives is another opportunity to grow more in the grace and knowledge of Christ. That happens on a daily basis. The past has it's regrets and the future it's unknowns but today we have all we need to honor Christ. To build a stronger foundation of life and love which will give us greater confidence.

The beauty comes in knowing that God has been working all along in every season of lour lives - whether we have seen it or not. Because of the death and resurrection of his Son we can be confident and have true hope for the future.

"And I am sure of this, that he who began a good work in you will bring it to completion at the day of Jesus Christ." Philippians 1:6

Look again at what he has done and press on not so much to start over but to carry on that work he has begun in you and will complete.

Monday, February 14, 2011


Here comes spring!

It's been a long winter and any signs of spring are warmly welcomed. I do like some parts of the winter season. The beauty of a snow covered tree. A crisp starry filled night and all that the Christmas time brings are unique to the winter season.

But...after awhile I find myself yearning for a new season. Signs of new life and warmth to replace the chill and lifeless feelings. Each season has those unique attractions but change can be good.

Our marriages take on a similar image. We go through seasons of change. Those early years are filled with enthusiasm and idealism. A perpetual honeymoon. But then you yearn for more than just having fun but to grow in mutual faith and partnership in life. Children may come, jobs may change and your lives take on a new dimension. Change is not always bad and in God's providence it is all part of his sanctifying work in our lives. Our confidence should not be in our surroundings but in the God who surrounds us. To know that no matter what the season or change he is still unchanging and is still working.

If you have the privilege of knowing a couple who are married at least 50 years and love Jesus, ask them about being married in those seasons of life and change. Listen to them. Hear more than practical advice but hear the love that has actually grown and become more the foundation of life. The more they live the more they want to grow.

Should that not be our heart's cry as Christians? The more we grow in our seasons of life with Jesus the more we want to be with him. Jesus wants us to be increasingly excited about our partners in life and grow in that love but he also wants us to be even more excited about our "marriage"to him.

Our spouse will not always be with us but Jesus will.

"For everything there is a season, and a time for every matter under heaven." Ecclesiastes 3:1

He truly is the one constant in every season. The more we are grounded in him the more we will be like him. The more things around us may change the more there will be something that stays the same. "Jesus Christ is the same yesterday and today and forever." Hebrews 13:8

Think about it. The more we are grounded in the changeless love of Jesus the more we will grow in every season of change. May you be one of those couples married 50 years who not only talk about it but truly show the love of Jesus.