Today is Good Friday, the day we remember Jesus’ death on the cross. If the crucifixion had been the end of the road, it would have been a sad story. Jesus would have died a martyr, a good man, even a prophet. But he would still be dead. Thank God Sunday was coming.
The scriptures do not focus on the pain of the crucifixion nearly as much as they do the shame. Jesus bore our shame on the cross to lead us to the resurrection. In him, we can leave behind the shame and live in reconciliation.
So what does that have to do with marriage? It begs the question, “What do you need to ‘put to death’ to love your spouse like you should?” What secret shame, destructive behavior, or selfish attitude or action needs to be eradicated so that you and your mate can live in transparent authenticity with each other?
Obviously, we’re fallen people living in a fallen world, so we’re going to mess up. And the reality is most of us mess up frequently. But when you or your spouse mess up, do you condemn and destroy or do you live in a different way? Just think what a covenant marriage defined by love, service, unity, submission, humility, healing, and forgiveness would look like. What would such a union say to your own family or to your community? A marriage centered on the cross and the empty tomb will bring a couple closer together. It will also point the world toward Christ and bring all creation closer to its final redemption. Such a marriage is a reflection of the image of God.
“Sacred Scripture begins with the creation of man and woman in the image and likeness of God and concludes with a vision of ‘the wedding-feast of the Lamb.’” (Catechism of the Catholic Church, part ii, sec. ii, ch. iii, art. vii.1602) The “bookends” of Scripture present two unique views of marriage: marriage as it was experienced at creation and marriage as the divine analogy of the final reconciliation of creation back to God.
As you observe the final days of Holy Week this year, let it be a strong reminder to let Christ’s death and resurrection direct the way you live out your faith in your marriage.
Marriage Enrichment Weekend
Fall Creek Falls State Park
August 31-September 2, 2012
Call 615-631-2511 to reserve a spot or for more info