Is She Hot?

A young man came to my office to ask about weddings. He was in a big hurry to get married. He began telling me about the woman of his dreams whom he had recently met, and asked if I would officiate their wedding. First I congratulated him. Then I asked him a question. In fact, I asked him the most important question when choosing a bride: Is she HOT? I know it sounds carnal. We all know that beauty is only skin deep, but I had to know, because the answer to this question would affect the rest of his life.

Adam lived in a perfect world; the environment was perfect and the climate was perfect. The food was delicious and his work was interesting and challenging. He had a perfect relationship with God. The Garden of Eden was paradise. What more could a man want? HD TV? No. Adam needed someone to share it with. If you’ve ever seen a beautiful sunset, and wished that someone was there to share it with you, then you know what I’m talking about. Thankfully God was not finished with his creation.

And the LORD God said, “It is not good that man should be alone; I will make him a helper comparable to him.” (Gen 2:18) Can you imagine Adam praying PLEASE God, make her pretty. Because we all know how important it is that we marry someone who is attractive to us. Our first indication that Eve was HOT was when God saw everything He had made, and indeed it was very good.  (Gen 1:31)

AdamWe also know that she was HOT because there is something in the way Adam uses the word “now”. It is as if there should have been and exclamation point after the word “now” – as if to say FINALLY!

Adam did his best to find vocabulary to express his feelings (typical man). He said:

This is now bone of my bones” – She’s got bones that match my bones.

And flesh of my flesh” – She has beautiful flesh. (I want to touch her.     I want to hold her. I want to love her.)   (Gen. 2:23)

She’s not like all the others. She’s a perfect match for me. We’re a matched pair. She’s my mate!  A perfect fit!Adam and Eve

Do you remember the day you first laid eyes on your mate? The first conversation you had? Sometimes it’s love at first sight. Sometimes it’s a slow revelation. Your thoughts progress from “Could this be the one?” to “This could be the one!” to “I think I may be falling in love.” to “WO-MAN!  I AM in love!!!” The defining moment is exciting and scary and wonderful and perplexing all at the same time.

There is term that gold miners use: “He’s married the vein.” That’s when a prospector is no longer objectively evaluating the minerals to discover whether or not there is gold in the vein. He has crossed a threshold where now every mineral he finds, he interprets as proof of the presence of gold.

But being physically attracted is not the only important criteria for choosing a mate. You sometimes see announcements in the newspaper of couples celebrating 50 years of marriage, and they are often accompanied by a current photograph next to their wedding picture. Fifty years later, none of us will look the same. The apostle Peter emphasizes that it is the person you are inside that is important.

Wives…Do not let your adornment be merely outward—arranging the hair, wearing gold, or putting on fine apparel— rather let it be the hidden person of the heart, with the incorruptible beauty of a gentle and quiet spirit, which is very precious in the sight of God. (1 Peter 3:3-4)

Guys, the Lord wants you to have a HOT wife. But when choosing a wife, He wants you to put a premium on finding a wife that is HOT for the things of the Lord.

Look for a wife that loves Jesus more than she loves you. One who is passionate to live for Him even if you don’t hold up your end of the bargain. Then, if and when you fail, she will look to the Lord for direction as to how to respond to you. Don’t settle for a wife that is physically hot, but lukewarm towards the things of the Lord. Ladies, the same goes for you when choosing a husband.

Jesus said to the church of Laodicea, “I know your works, that you are neither cold nor hot. I could wish you were cold or hot. So then, because you are lukewarm, and neither cold nor hot I will vomit you out of My mouth. Rev 3:15-1

I don’t recommend that you write this verse on an anniversary card, but I do recommend writing the exhortation on the tablet of your heart to get hot and stay HOT for the things of the Lord. It will make you attractive when you’re young, and will keep you attractive until you celebrate fifty years together and beyond.

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The Wonder of Christmas

treeMany families have traditions associated with the holidays. Some celebrate on Christmas Eve, and the whole family gets together for dinner and presents. Some families invite all the relatives to celebrate Christmas morning, and stretch the celebration out all day.

When I’m doing pre-marriage counseling, I casually ask where the new couple will spend Thanksgiving.  The bride-to-be quickly answers, “At my parents’ house, of course.  It’s the only day of the year we get the whole family together.” I look at the groom and he has a troubled look on his face. With a little coaxing, he chokes out that his grandmother expects them to be at her table that same afternoon… and you don’t want to get on grandma’s “naughty list”.

Does the wonder of Christmas, turn into “I wonder who will be offended this Christmas”?

Most young couples face the challenge of family expectations early in their marriage. The bible says, Therefore a man shall leave his father and mother and be joined to his wife and they shall become one flesh. (Gen 2: 24) When a couple gets married, the relationship changes between themselves and their parents. But change doesn’t always come easily. All their lives children have been told to obey their parents. Now as married adults, a new authority structure is established. Young married couples sometimes have difficulty with this. But guess who else has difficulty? It seems that well-meaning parents and grandparents didn’t get the memo. They sometimes put tremendous pressure on their adult children to follow the “family script”.

Wise in-laws will invite their newlyweds to family events, and will be very understanding if they are unable to attend. Ask them when it works for them to get together, and then enjoy the holiday. Some families alternate holidays; some split Christmas Eve and Christmas day. MangerWise newlyweds will decide together what is important to them. There may be some new traditions they want to establish for their new family. They should do their best to communicate their plans graciously to the people who love them. That will take the wondering out of the holidays so everyone can enjoy the wonder of Christmas.

No Napkins

You’ve seen the famous picture. A golden candelabra stands on a long table draped with a white tablecloth. Fine china settings and crystal goblets line each side, and seem to run forever to a vanishing point over Jerusalem. Beyond the exquisite table and carved chairs, lay the dawn of a brand new day. Countless artists have attempted to capture the picture-perfect Marriage Feast.

We’ve all been to weddings. I am always amazed at the creativity and expense people go to for nuances of symbolism. They work to exhaustion so that everything will be perfect. The bride wearing a white dress arrives in a carriage drawn by a white horse. Two doves are released. A unity candle is lit.

Ministers carefully craft wedding ceremonies, in the hope that a better description of marriage will help young couples have better marriages. Eager grooms and starry-eyed brides invite family and friends to witness as they make promises, only to find out later that they didn’t have a clue what they were promising.

Marriage Feast in Heaven I’ve noticed there is something conspicuously missing in the famous painting of the Marriage Feast (besides the food, of course). It seems they forgot to include napkins. An oversight? I hardly think so. One of the things that will make heaven, heaven is that we won’t need napkins. In heaven we will all be perfect. No spills, no reaching for the butter and having your elbow hit a glass of milk.  No nice cabernet all over the tablecloth and on your spouse’s lap. No exclamations coming out of your mouth before you realize it.

Someday everything will be perfect…in heaven. In the meantime, husbands and wives are two imperfect people making a life in an imperfect world; two people in need of grace. Grace is unearned and undeserved favor that God gives to us. Life and marriage will be more like heaven as we learn to give grace to one another.

Grace to you and peace from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ. ~ Romans 1:7