Friday, March 1, 2013

Marital Advice

I am out of town today with my wife. But before leaving, I spent some time flipping through some old books on marriage that I have read or referenced in the past. As I was doing it, I came across this helpful reminder from Dave Harvey in his book, When Sinners Say, 'I Do.'
"So here is my conclusion: I am a better husband and father, and a happier man, when I recognize myself as the worst of sinners. That status just seems more obvious to me with the passing of each week. But then again, you're the worst of sinners too. So is your spouse. At least it's not lonely here at the bottom. Do you fear that you'll be too hard on yourself? If so, just remember that to Paul, his 'worst of sinners' view was a sign of clear-eyed self-assessment and a robust awareness of the holiness of God. Remember also who we are in Christ despite our sin: we are treasured children of the Father, who loved us enough to send his only Son to suffer the punishment for our sins, even those sins we have yet to commit. And remember that God is at work in you, conforming you into a genuine, from the inside out, example of Christ. A sober assessment of our sinful condition doesn't hinder that work, it celebrates it! The question that used to boggle my mind, 'If I love my wife, why do I find it so easy to treat her like I don't?' has a universal answer. We are all the worst of sinners, so anything we do that isn't sin is simply the grace of God at work" (43).

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