My friend, Carol, has been married for over 49 years. When asked what their secret is to keeping such a strong and happy marriage they reply, “God is first, then the spouse, the children, then ministry for her and work for him, then self in this order.” In contrast, many couples today prioritize their marriages as self is first, then work, children, spouse, and then maybe God at Christmas and Easter.
According to Goldie Hawn, who has been living with her partner Kurt Russell for 37 years, marriage kills commitment. “Marriage is an interesting sociological thing. If you need to be bound to someone, then it’s important to be married,” Hawn said while sitting front and center on the show’s panel. “If you have independence, if you have enough money and enough sense of independence and you like your independence, there is something psychological about not being married because it gives you the freedom to make decisions.” She also said if she had wed her partner of 37 years, Kurt Russell, she would been “long divorced” by now.
Did you marry your husband to be “bound” to him? If you are a believer in Jesus Christ, you sure did. What Hollywood fails to realize is that marriage was created and defined by God and this will never change. A man and a woman will become one flesh until death do they part. This is God’s definition no matter how much our culture tries to redefine it. When you become one flesh with your husband, you are bound for life through good times and bad times, sickness and health, poverty and plenty. God is first in your marriage and then your spouse.
“Marriage does take away your independence.” Ms. Hawn is right about this. When you get married, you are your husband’s help meet and live in submission to his leadership. “Blech,” says the world, “that sounds miserable!” (Yes, they use much worse expletives towards this teaching.) Interestingly, she does understand marriage as being bound and losing independence but wants some of the benefits (sex, security, and children) without the commitment.
I can’t tell you how their “relationship” is working behind closed doors, but they’ve been together a long time. Now, others will think this must be the solution since there are so many divorces all around them. It’s not the answer. Living together as an unmarried couple or marrying knowing there is always the option to divorce aren’t any different. But if you are a child of the Most High, we are different.
Yes, we are bound to our husband. We have taken his name, bore his children if blessed with them, and are growing old together through good times and hard times. We have willingly given up our independence and the freedom to make many of our decisions without our husband’s input. This is the way God designed marriage and it is good. It’s a sacrifice and denying ourselves, but this is how a believer in Jesus Christ should live their entire lives; marriage is no different. Self is last with a believer, just as Carol’s marriage has prioritized.
If you want a strong and godly marriage, put your priorities in the same order that Carol and her husband have put them. Hollywood’s priorities are upside down and destructive to the majority of marriages.
The wife is bound by the law as long as her husband liveth; but if her husband be dead, she is at liberty to be married to whom she will; only in the Lord.
1 Corinthians 7:39