What Kind of Marriage Do You Have?

A card with the words "Will you marry me"Marriage was God’s idea. “Therefore shall a man leave his father and his mother, and shall cleave unto his wife: and they shall be one flesh,” He decreed (Genesis 2:24). Over the years as a pastor and preacher, I have seen time and again that marriage can be either a blessing or a curse. It all depends on the kind of marriage you have. I am of the conviction that every marriage falls into one of three categories as follows:

One plus one is less than two. This is the kind of marriage in which the yield of being a couple is less than the sum of what each partner had before marriage. This happens when  marriage partners fail to work together. At least one partner is not pulling his or her load, or is actually working against the efforts of the other. In this kind of marriage, each person may get less accomplished than he or she did while living single. One person can feel as though he or she is pulling the entire load. Such a marriage can be a living hell. It is not unusual to hear one partner utter the words, “I can do bad by myself,” or  “I was better off before marriage.”

One plus one is equal to two. In this kind of marriage, the yield of being a couple is the same as the sum of what each partner enjoyed before wedlock.  Of course, this is all subjective. But isn’t that what really matters, how the partners in a marriage feel about their own marriage? When a man and woman get married, it is reasonable to expect that their union will add to the quality of life that each enjoyed while living single. But in this category they don’t sense that effect. Of course, this kind of marriage is much better than the previous one discussed, but it’s not where God wants it to be.

One plus one is greater than two. In this kind of marriage, the yield of the union exceeds the sum of what each partner experienced beforehand. Marriage should make each partner in a marriage better than he or she could possibly be alone. Note—I did not say marriage should make one partner better but both of them. It’s not one at the expense of the other, but there should be a synergy in marriage that catapults both partners to another level. This is the kind of marriage that God wants us to enjoy.

So what kind of marriage do you have? The good news is that one’s marriage does not have to stay in one of the less desirable categories mentioned above. Marriage is what we make it. Marital success is not a given for any of us. It requires much work. But marriage was God’s idea, and He is ready, willing, and able to partner with us for success in our marriage.

Copyright © 2014 by Frank King. All rights reserved.