GOODNESS GRACIOUS

By Tommy Rush

This coming Sunday is Valentine’s Day. The Weather Channel predicts it’s going to be one of the coldest days of the year. I’m not sure why I shared those two thoughts together, other than the fact that it brings to mind many years of marriage counseling. If you have been in a relationship for any length of time, you know relationships require a lot of goodness and grace.

Relationships are difficult, especially for men. Don’t make the mistake that one man made when his wife told him that she wanted him to take her somewhere on Valentine’s Day that she had never been before. So he took her to the kitchen. She took him to the guest bedroom.

I think we would all agree that having a good relationship requires honesty and hard work. Most people want the romance without the reality. Relationships often begin to struggle when husbands and wives start making unrealistic comparisons. It is a big mistake to think that the grass is always greener with someone else. If the grass is greener, it’s because someone has watered it, fertilized it and taken care of it. If no one appears to be taking care of it, there’s probably a septic tank somewhere!

This past December, Leigh and I celebrated our 40th Wedding Anniversary. She would be the first to tell you that marriage involves a lot of hard work and patience. She would also be quick to say that marriage requires a ton of grace and forgiveness. I’m definitely grateful for a wife who has loved me through the good, bad and ugly. Recently I asked her if she loved me just as much today as she did when we were married, even though I have put on several more pounds. She told me that she had married me for better or worse, richer or poorer and thick and thin.

Actually we need love the most, when we least deserve it. It’s easy to love when the sun is shining, when your spouse is in a good mood and there’s money in the bank. But love grows strong and deep when the day is cold, everyone’s in a bad mood, and the back account is depleted. You know love comes from God when you act like a total jerk and your spouse tells you “I love you” when they want to tell you to stick it in your ear.

I don’t know if you are struggling in your marriage today, but I want you to know that God has the power to heal and restore every heart. Maybe you feel that your marriage is dying or even dead. I’ve got some good news, Easter always follows Valentine’s Day. On Easter we celebrate the resurrection! Jesus Christ conquered death and the grave and if you will trust Him with your life, He promises to satisfy your deepest needs. Something, quite honestly no other individual could ever do. But once you and your spouse discover the greatest love of all and place your faith in the One who’s the giver of life, it won’t be long before you’re singing the Hallelujah Chorus together!


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