16 March 2018
The strongest rope is a three-fold rope.
"Two are better than one". We learn this principle from Solomon. But, the truth is that two together, stay together, through love. Solomon further said that when two are together and the one falls, the other can help him up. His wisdom further states that when two lie down together, they keep each other warm. When two are attacked, together they can drive off the attacker.
But, Solomon’s last example has a different angle – "A cord of three strands is not quickly torn apart."(Ecc 4:12). In this case, the strength supplied is not by two standing together, but by three coming together in unity in Christ.
There is a strength that can be found when three people are bound together – a man, a woman and God Himself. The relationship between a man and a woman can never succeed when they go at it alone. But, the moment when God is added to the relationship, it introduces a whole new dimension.
The three-fold cord is a pattern of marriage introduced to us in Genesis. And to this day it gives hope to believers who are united through their faith in Christ.
Marriage is the most wonderful but toughest ministry anyone could ever undertake. It just cannot be done without God being in the center. Marriage requires "mature and selfless love”. Mature love is a three-stranded cord which stretches beyond your own abilities and selfish needs.
Whenever there is tension in a marriage – and the three-fold cord is not present – it will quickly become a situation filled with selfishness. But, bound by the three-fold cord we can apply the oil of the Holy Spirit to the ‘tension’ and see God’s love and wisdom at work. Together, we can then focus on God’s perfect plan for us as a unit. Tension does not always mean that something is seriously wrong. It can indicate that something is happening! Your position, in unity, will determine how you face it and what the outcome of the problem will be.
It is a given that two people pledging to marry, surrounded by the challenges and brokenness of life, will experience tension from time to time. This is normal, but the key is, remaining within the three-cord strand. As soon as you feel tension, ask Holy Spirit to show you the bigger picture.
I my 30 years of marriage, I have learned that all the challenges of marriage are nothing other than wonderful opportunities to learn how to grow. To learn more of yourself and your spouse, to die in self, to grow closer to God and in our understanding of Him. But, the lesson I have learned above everything else was getting to know God through the eyes of my gentle husband.
God uses marriage to teach us about His love.
1 Cor 13:4 Love endures long and is patient and kind; love never is envious nor boils over with jealousy, is not boastful or vainglorious, does not display itself haughtily.
In the beginning years of our marriage, I was determined that it was Tinus’s responsibility tomake me happy. Then later I sought my happiness from the things of the world, trying to fill the gaps created by the brokenness inside of me.
But, today after having died much to self – I can look through eyes of "mature love". Today I understand that if you invest your happiness into temporary things, your happiness will be temporary.
True happiness comes from God. Everyday, I see how God uses being married to build holiness inside of us.
If you want to become more like Jesus Christ, there is no better way than to get married! Pitythat most couples do not even consider this when they consider getting married. When you enrol in the practical school of marriage, you will find that you are being transformed 24/7, 7 days a week!
God knew what He was doing – because marriage calls us to a new and selfless life. But,what a wonderful experience when you can look back and see how God has transformed you both. Binding you more securely with His three-stranded cord of love.
A happy and successful marriage is one that is tied securely with His three-fold cord. It is you, your spouse and God! Only then can we start moving in the direction and destiny that God planned for us as a couple.
We have a Couple’s retreat 20-22 April at Wortelgat, near Hermanus. If you feel His nudging, come! Don't miss it. I believe God is in the business of transformation!
It is never too late – don't give up hope.
God’s plan for us is to taste the sweetness of marriage.
There is always hope.
Love to you all
Retah and family