On Sunday, May 5, the East Side congregation will hold a class called Marriage Checkup to help married couples assess if their marriage is the ministry that it should be. Our source material will come from Tim and Kathy Keller’s book The Meaning for Marriage and Paul Tripp’s What Did You Expect?
The foundation of the class comes from a quote by Tripp which says, “The problem in our marriages is not first that we don’t love one another enough; no, the problem is that we don’t love God enough, and because we don’t love God enough, we don’t love one another as we should.” With this in mind, we will encourage participants not just to look at their marriages but all of their relationships and ask, “What is it about my relationship with God right now that is making me less patient/loving/compassionate/kind to those around me? Where am I not loving Him as I should?”
The symptoms that play out in our relationships are indicators of where we are in our love for God. When we react to others in sinful ways, we often blame the other person for “causing” that reaction in us. But this is a wrong way of thinking. Those sinful reactions were already in us and the circumstances of the relationship have just revealed them to us.
This insight is helpful when we are offended in relationships other than marital ones. If my friend, or parent, or child hurts me in some way, it is not personal. Our life is being affected by the fallen nature of the other person.
Because the essence of marriage is a covenant, we want to create a place where we can help to sanctify one another. We want the other person to grow in Christlikeness. The best way for us to do this in marriage or any relationship is to be in love with Jesus ourselves so we can sacrificially love those in the way he has loved us.
The Marriage Checkup class was held for East Side parents in March and we look forward to opening this opportunity up to the entire congregation.