It’s Sunday! There is a buzz that keeps getting stronger and stronger. First the women reported that the tomb was empty. Then, Peter and John confirmed it. Two men coming from Emmaus said it was far more than an empty tomb. They claimed they walked and talked with Jesus—that he is alive! Then, to their overwhelming surprise, Jesus is standing in the middle of the disciples, showing them that he is not a ghost, not an apparition, not a figment of wishful thinking. He has real flesh and blood, and he is as alive as any of them. And then, then it comes to them at last. Their version of Messiah involved earthly political powers, overthrowing a foreign government, ascending to positions of authority. But Jesus was giving them something far greater, far more powerful. He was inviting them into the resurrection life, into a new way of living that supersedes everything else. He was giving them peace, joy, and hope beyond understanding. He was calling them back to God’s purpose for their lives. At last, Easter Sunday had arrived! At last, new life can begin!
Easter is a continually call to embrace the new life we have in Christ. We remember that we are called to different kind of life—the resurrection life—that is radically different from the old life we put to death.
So what does that have to do with marriage? If marriage is a Kingdom calling (which I believe it is), we must continually ask the question, “How are you bringing ‘new life’ into your marriage on an ongoing basis so that the world can see Christ in you as a couple?”
I don’t know where you are in your marriage right now, but if your relationship is characterized by your selfish desires, demands, and expectations of your spouse (and all of us are that way at one time or another), then it’s time to put those things to death so that you can start moving toward a “new life” with your mate. That new life in your marriage will be characterized by
- selflessly serving your mate
- loving in action as well as word
- forgiveness without any strings attached
- embracing a renewed trust
- a shared hope that can only come through Christ
We live in a world marred by darkness. The ongoing Easter call is for us, by the power of God, to continually drive out the world's darkness that tries to seep into our marriages, and replace it with the light of Christ. Often times, the first step to a “new life” in your marriage is being honest with yourself and your spouse about the things you need to change. Once you do that, you open up yourself and your marriage for God to do powerful things through you—at last!