A divided house cannot stand.

Mark 3:25 “And if a house be divided against itself, that house cannot stand.”

The usual suspects, Pharisees and the like, had accused Jesus of having a demon and casting out demons by the prince of demons, Beelzebub. Jesus turned this group and said that if Satan casted out Satan, then his kingdom was divided and would not last. He went to say that a house divided would not last and stand and nor could a kingdom divided against itself stand. For any entity to be strong there has to be unity at its core.

This verse smacked me right square between the eyes today because my wife and I have been at odds with one another for some time. I am not going to lie about it. Most people attempt to have a good marriage, but things do creep up from time to time that can cause and do cause a rift between married folk. I am of no exception. In fact, the issues at hand have caused us grief, anger, mistrust, and other problems. The one thing that we can and do agree on is that God must be the center of our marriage and that unity must come.

I have found that being right all the time, being the decision maker all the time, and being the instigator do not for a happy marriage make. I am learning that I must humble myself not only before God but also to my wife, not in worship or adoration, but to the level of submitting ourselves one to another as Paul wrote. Because of my actions, prayers have been hindered. Animosity had its reign for a short time. Anger lurked at every corner waiting to grab hold of me! Paul taught we are to put away anger and malice, but it is not that easy. I know!!!!

Despite it all, I am willing to do whatever it takes to make us work! If it involves counseling, so be it. If it involves my not doing something or wanting something in order to bring love, joy, and peace, etc. in our home, so be it. If it involves (which it does) self-sacrifice and selfless service, so be it. No one will ever see eye-to-eye in this life including married people, but we must still extend the love and grace of God to the one closest to us (if married) — our spouse!! Love is more than a feeling. Love is doing what Jesus did and expects us to do — give our lives for the other person!

Babe, for you I would lay down my life! I am sorry for the way I have acted for some time. Please know that I desire love and peace in our home as much as you. Life just would not be the same without you! I love you!

Father, You said to pray believing for what we ask, and we would receive it. I don’t ask amiss because it is Your will that our marriage be strong and have love, joy, peace, etc. at its core. Please forgive me for my rude behavior and attitudes at times. I relent of the anger I once harbored in my soul against my wife. Help me to be a man of God in whom the fruit of Your Spirit grows. We are known by the fruit we produce. My fruit has been rotten at times. I don’t want to be bad fruit tree that is unproductive, cut down, allowed to wither and then thrown into the fire. Help me to love my wife at all cost save You. You are my first love, but she is second only to You! Grant us unity in our home that we may be able to stand strong together in service to You and Your people and to those needing You. In Jesus’ name, Amen.