Wednesday, January 28, 2009

On marriage and a transformed life

When June 1st arrives this year, I'll have been married 13 years. Between those years and the two years that Karen and I spent dating, I have spent all of my adult life loving this one woman. And it occurred to me the other day that I can't really remember what life was like before I knew her, loved her, and married her.

Part of that phenomenon is surely due to simple passing of the years. But a larger and more significant part is, I think, due to the fact that my life has been so transformed by this one relationship. No longer do I make decisions without considering her wishes and desires. No longer do I regard myself as being the center of existence, and my desires as most important. Instead, I have learned the art of loving sacrifice, of confession and forgiveness, and of savoring each moment of time together that feels all too scarce, no matter its duration in reality.

And as I reflect on these things, it occurs to me that this kind of transformation is the same kind that I am pursuing in my walk with Christ--a dethroning of self, times of confession and forgiveness, the sacrificing of my desires to please the One I love, and an enjoyment of rich time that feels short even if it's long. And most of all, I want my life with Jesus to so transform me that I can't remember what it was like before I met Him. I want to regard the former life of the flesh with the same disdain that I now regard my former days as a single man and to choose in the practical realities of life's decisions to reject even the hints of the old life.

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