Better Than Häagen-Dazs
By Marilette Sanchez
“God, if You truly wanted us to be together, why would our careers clash like this?”
We were two weeks away from our wedding.
I thought finding my soulmate was supposed to be easy. Our lives and career goals should fit seamlessly together like a puzzle, right?
Even as a young girl, I vowed to never give up career aspirations for a man.
But fast forward a few years: My soon-to-be husband had been a full-time youth minister for two years. His missionary organization strongly encouraged married couples to join together.
After months of praying and seeking counsel, I was downright shocked when it seemed the Lord finally had a clear answer for me: “Follow your husband.”
As Christians, we’re called to a humility modeled after Christ’s self-emptying. Despite being God, Jesus humbled Himself to join humanity, even to the point of a humiliating death, for our sake.
For some reason, this seems easier to do with just about anyone other than our spouses. Personally, chick flicks and love songs conditioned me to believe that marriage was about finding someone who completes me effortlessly.
When I choose the action movie over the chick flick for date night, I am emptying myself. I empty myself when, as a mom of young kids, I press through exhaustion to initiate sex as a way to show my love for my husband. Or when I hold my tongue as I watch my husband eat the last scoop of ice cream.
Before marriage, I could never imagine giving up the Häagen-Dazs—much less my career—because I hadn’t understood the sacrifice a good relationship requires.
Does it take more effort to love sacrificially? Yes.
Is it more spiritually and emotionally satisfying? Most definitely.
The good stuff: [Christ], though he was in the form of God, did not count equality with God a thing to be grasped, but made himself nothing, taking the form of a servant, being born in the likeness of men. (Philippians 2:6-7)
Action points: Look back at the last conflict you had with your spouse. Could the root cause be that one (or both) of you refused to “empty” yourself? What were you grasping too tightly? What are one or two ways you can “empty” yourself in order to love your spouse well?
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