The Biblical Marriage Vow Makes It Possible To Be Intimate and Free To Be Yourself

By: Amanda Mattingly 0 Comments   11/30/2011

I have always been the kind of girl that keeps to herself. I was never really the type to start the first conversation or be outgoing.

As I was a very independent person, I never really dated much through high school and college.

This is not to say I thought there was anything wrong with dating, as I didn't, nor is that my opinion now. I simply was not the type that dated around much.

Having two semesters left in college, I remember calling my sister, Elise, one night to talk about my future plans. I have always wanted to go to Thailand, and I decided now was the time.

I talked to her about my plans to go overseas for about a year and work independently in an orphanage there. At the end of our conversation, I expressed my feelings that I did not think I would be one of those girls who met their husband in college.

As I contemplated this thought, I decided that I was okay with it. My sister kind of chuckled and told me that would be okay.

As God is one with a sense of humor, it would be the very next day that I met the man I would spend the rest of my life with. It was only 24 hours later that I called Elise back and said, "So remember that conversation we had yesterday? Well, I am not sure, but I think I may have met someone tonight."

One of the first things I noticed when we started dating was that I was completely myself around him. I did not feel like I had to act a certain way to get his approval; I could be myself and that was enough. I had never felt so free before. I had been used to feeling like I could not be my goofy self around some people, but I never felt that way with Tim.

Not too long after we started dating, Tim and I found ourselves standing before God and our families saying, “I do.”

In a marriage, both husband and wife have the freedom to be exactly who they are—who God specifically made them to be. Marriage is where you share your whole being with someone else, which includes the good, the bad, the quarks, the passions, and absolutely every part of your being. It is the ultimate friendship.

Song of Solomon 5:16 - “...This is my beloved, and this is my friend...” This part of Song of Solomon was printed on our wedding program, as entering into marriage means committing to an intimate friendship for a lifetime. Not only were Tim and I best friends, but now we were proceeding into our relationship as husband and wife, where it became so much more.

In an recent article published by Christian Post, Pastor and best-selling author Tim Keller and his wife Kathy discuss the concepts in their new book The Meaning of Marriage. One concept they talk about is how when two people are married, it unites the purposes and passions that God has placed in each individual.

“The determining factor when deciding whether to marry someone should be whether both people in the relationship want to help each other become what God has planned for them individually and together,” Keller’s said in Christian Post article.

God places a purpose and a passion in each person’s life. Then when two people enter into the covenant of marriage, that purpose and passion is something that continues to grow in each individual, but it also becomes shared between spouses.

As I have a deep passion, still, to go to Thailand as well as a passion for missions, it has now become something that Tim and I are figuring out together and how our two purposes are united as one under God’s ultimate plan for our lives. I can see, now, that God’s plan was not for me to go to Thailand independently, but for this to be a passion that Is here with my beloved husband and to be something that we work toward together—just as the passions God has placed in his life are something that we seek after together.

Matthew 19:6 - “So they are no longer two, but one. Therefore what God has joined together, let man not separate.” God unites man and wife to be one. He grows their passions and desires individually and guides husband and wife to unite them together for His purposes.

“A lot of people are afraid that a vow limits your freedom. That’s not true. You are really freer by making a vow and sticking with it than in a sense being the victim of your own desires, and impulses, and feelings,” Keller stated. “The marriage vow makes it possible for you to be intimate because you can be yourself. You know the other person isn’t going to walk, promising not to walk when things get tough.”

No matter how strong a marriage is, there will always be difficult times that arise. Marriage is not just about the romanticism that society makes it out to be. Yes, of course, deep romanticism exists within a marriage, but it is not the basis.

This comes from the foundation that is set forth by God. In a marriage, not everything will be perfect; there will still be hard times, sad times and days of frustration that come along with all of the good aspects of marriage. However, the joy and peace that comes from these circumstances (when you are in a marriage that is standing on the foundation of God's Word) is the confidence in knowing that you and your spouse will walk through it together, seeking after God's guidance in each and every circumstance.

“Love is patient, love is kind...it always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres. Love never fails,” 1 Corinthians 13:4, 7-8a.

The love that is described in this passage is the type of love that stems from a couple’s vows, made as a covenant before God. Marriage is a unique gift that God has a given us. It was established for unity, with God always to be at the very center of it.

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