Editors note: This is a brand new series designed to help you love the Lord with all of your heart, mind and strength so you can love your neighbor (Matthew 22:39-40). The first post in this series was by Brian Hedges who wrote on Love and Spiritual Transformation. In the second post, Matthew Sims wrote on God So Loved. The third post in the series is by Matthew Fretwell who wrote on sharing love. The fourth post was written by Dave Jenkins on How To Love and Care for your Wife. The fifth post in this series was written by Dave Jenkins on Valentines Day, Love and the Gospel. The sixth post was written by Mike Boling writes on Love is Patient, Love is Kind. Today, Dave Jenkins writes on Love and Marriage: Seven Years of Love, Bless and Trials.

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Today marks seven years I’ve been married to my wife. Over the past month I’ve been reflecting on what my wife has meant to me and what I could share with you in this post. As I’ve done that I’ve come to the conclusion that my wife is not only a very godly and intelligent woman, she is also one of the sweetest people I know. If you were to ask those around me who know my wife what they think about her, they would describe her the same way I’ve described her. Whether at work, church, or in our family, people often tell me how blessed I am to have such a wonderful wife. I tell them, “Yes, I am” and I’m thankful for her because the Lord has used her to change my life.

In my opinion, Love is something that not many people fully comprehend. People often view love as something they feel. Yes, love is a feeling and a very powerful one, but love as just a feeling will not sustain a marriage. When you get in a fight with your spouse, you will not feel love for them but rather anger. We could go through a long list of feelings experienced in marriage but the thing is only by understanding the source of love in Jesus can we as Christians ever hope to sustain a healthy and happy marriage. There has been a definite rise in marriages being under attack as well as the very foundation of what marriage is as defined by Scripture being assaulted with society declaring marriage to be whatever one deems appropriate.  God defines marriage as between one man and one woman, not between one man and one man or one woman and one woman. Marriage according to God and as defined by His Word is between one man and one woman for the rest of their lives. This husband and wife covenant before God means two join together to become one flesh with Jesus as their head, the husband leading the wife as an undershepherd of Jesus in the home, and the wife submitting to her husband as unto the Lord.

Love according to our world is often viewed as opposite of what I’ve described. The Bible however, paints a picture of love as one originating from God, providing the foundation for why Christians can love Him and one another (Matthew 22:38-40). The only reason Christians can love God, their spouses and others, is because of the finished work of Jesus Christ. It is only because that love is being poured out (Romans 5:5) in increasing measure that we can understand some of the heights and depths of God’s love (Ephesians 3:16-19).

One of the primary reasons why many people struggle inside and outside the Church with loving their spouses and giving up on marriage is because they never understood the foundation of love in Jesus Christ. Without His love there is no hope for a sustaining marriage. Even when my wife and I have disagreements, we still love each other. We come together quickly after taking a break to pray alone to talk about what happened. Rather than holding onto grudges and being bitter, couples that love God can confront challenges in their marriages by the grace of God.

Seven years ago I married the most amazing woman I’ve ever known. She married me at a time in my life when I was struggling academically and personally. She told me she wouldn’t let me slack off in school. I often tell other people that without her I wouldn’t be the man that I am today without her. I recently told her that anything I achieve by the grace of God in this life is because of her love and support. I also told her she shared in my successes in school because she helped edit my papers; therefore, without her love and support I doubt I would have graduated with the grades I received.

Today, as I reflect on seven years of marriage, I’m thankful for Jesus. Without Him I wouldn’t have lasted seven years. Through many trials, tribulations, and struggles, God continues to weave a tapestry of His love and grace in my marriage to my lovely wife Sarah. Without His love drawing me and wooing me, I would be lost not only eternally, but also in life in general. I’m so thankful today for the gift of my beautiful and godly wife Sarah.

Men, if you’ve married a godly woman who loves Jesus and His church, then rejoice in God! You have found a true treasure and a gift from God. A godly wife is a true treasure and blessing from our God and King.  As I’ve learned that truth over the past seven years, I’ve also come to appreciate more especially in recent days, the wisdom, insight, and understanding my wife has about God’s Word. While I haven’t always appreciated her insight and understanding as I should have in the past, I do now and am deeply blessed that outside of my gift of salvation, God gave me such a wonderful loving wife in Sarah. So, today, my dear Sarah, sweetheart, I love you because of the love of Jesus. I love you and am thankful for the gift of you. I look forward to many more years together with Jesus as our Captain and Shepherd leading us ever towards Himself by His grace and for His glory.