By Rob Thorpe
I married the woman of my dreams, and she will make me happy. Happiness is the goal of marriage, right?
One of the lies that undermines and destroys marriages is a lie we have all heard, and many have believed. God wants me to be happy, and so He brought me together with this woman to accomplish that goal. We hide our true intentions behind the veil of “getting married to make our wife happy,” but deep down our honest expectation is that she will make ME happy … isn’t it?
God clearly spoke, “It is not good for man to be alone.” But He did not follow that statement with, “I will make a helper, suitable for him who will make him happy all the days of his life.”
Don’t get me wrong, God wants us to be filled with joy, and enjoy an abundant life. Jesus said He came for that. Our true joy and fulfillment, however, does not come from our wife, or our financial success, or even our ministry success.
It comes from our personal, daily relationship with Christ Himself.
Psalm 4:7 – You have put more joy in my heart than they have when their grain and wine abound.
Psalm 16:11 – You make known to me the path of life; in your presence there is fullness of joy; at your right hand are pleasures forevermore.
Joy (happiness) comes from God. The 2nd fruit of the Spirit is “joy.” God never intended for our wives to be our primary source of joy and happiness in this life. He is our source. He has given us ALL things to enjoy. When we get our eyes off of Him, and put our expectations on our wife, we will be disappointed (as will she). She is sinful. You are sinful. We will let each other down.
There is One who will never disappoint, or let us down. Only by seeking His presence each and every day will we ever find true happiness and fulfillment in our marriage. He created marriage, and He knows exactly what we need to make it a smashing success. We need more than just saying a prayer in Sunday school as a kid. We need Him. We need to know Him, personally, and walk with Him daily.
The ultimate purpose of marriage is not our happiness – but His glory. If we make that the daily pursuit, our marriage and our life will overflow with true happiness.
I Corinthians 10:31 – Whatever you do, in word or deed, do all for the glory of God.
Rob Thorpe is the author of two popular books directed at husbands;Husband – A User’s Guide, and ReNEWed – A 30-Day Devotional Challenge for Husbands, and is the founder and director of Square1 Ministries and C.R.E.W.
Rob is a frequent speaker at Iron Sharpens Iron Men’s Conferences nationwide, has appeared on VTN and has written numerous articles for marriage-related blogs and magazines. He is host to the Internet’s largest husband-specific blog (http://square1ministries.com/blog) and is followed by thousands on Twitter (http://twitter.com/husbandmentor ). His third book, CHOICES, is due to be released in the summer of 2012.
Married since 1975, Rob and his wife Billie live in Little Rock, Arkansas, and have three sons, three daughters (in-law) and 5 grandchildren.