At the time this article is being published, we have just kicked off our counseling training classes on the topic of marriage. We have looked and marveled at God’s good design for marriage, and will spend more time doing so in the weeks to come.
My preparation for these classes has been a refreshing reminder of the beauty of marriage. But as a sinner with a bent toward wandering, it is far too easy for me to marvel at the beauty of God’s good design one moment, then fail to live it out the next.
This human tendency is what led the recently married Nancy DeMoss Wolgemuth (formerly Nancy Leigh DeMoss) to write an article titled “Serpents, Seeds, and a Savior: Reflections of a Newlywed.” In it she shares her thoughts from a recent study through Genesis 2 and 3, where she found herself jolted by the sudden transition from one chapter to the next. After the beautiful uniting of Adam and Eve in Genesis 2, there is a fierce and unwelcome entrance in chapter 3 of the serpent who seeks to ruin their marital harmony. If you have the time, I would highly recommend reading the entire article. Here is a snippet though…
I landed in this passage seven weeks to the day after my marriage to Robert Wolgemuth. We are still very much newlyweds. Very much in love. Still amazed at what God has brought to pass. Still in awe of the gift God has given us in each other. Still enthralled by and exploring the wonder of what it is to be “one flesh.”
And already aware of the presence of the serpent in our marriage. An intruder who knows better than most what God intends for our marriage to be — one who despises the One who joined us together and hates the Story our marriage is meant to tell.
This villain, disguised in a cloak of light, posturing as a voice of reason and rightness, comes to me in unguarded moments. He comes to us in the sweet garden of our newfound love and plants in the soil of my mind seeds of doubt about things God has revealed to be true; conjures up fears that my Creator may not have my best interests at heart; beckons me to exalt my will over God’s, to imagine that my way is superior to his, and to strike out independently of my God and my groom.
All the marriage training classes in the world cannot make us immune to the influence of the serpent in our marriages. His words pervade not only the world around us, but also our very own hearts. In order to embrace God’s design for marriage we have to recognize and reject what is not God’s design.
The serpent’s schemes cannot succeed toward those who day by day, moment by moment hold fast to faith in their loving God and Savior. We have a Husband who loves us so dearly that He gave Himself for us, and the doubting seeds of the serpent dry up and fail in the light of His goodness and grace.
Source: Desiring God
While God is faithful to change hearts and minds in the lives of His children, we also understand that change is a process, and often times far from simplistic or quick. Habits of life and thinking tend to change over time as the Holy Spirit works in hearts. This process of change is called “progressive sanctification.” It can be helpful and sometimes necessary to seek help from other Christians who can faithfully lead and walk with us, providing biblical encouragement and instruction along the way for the implementation of God-honoring, Christ-centered change. If you are struggling with life’s challenges, we would encourage you to seek help from your pastor, a godly friend, or a biblical counselor who is committed to seeking answers from God’s Word. To find a biblical counselor you can contact us or visit biblicalcounseling.com to find a counselor in your area.
Born and raised in the Dallas area, Ryan loves calling Texas his home. He met his wife Jessica at Grace Bible Fellowship Church, where he serves on staff and is a counselor for Grace Biblical Counseling Ministries. Since 2013 he has been a member of the Association of Certified Biblical Counselors, and in May 2015 he graduated from Moody Bible Institute with a B.S. in Ministry Leadership.