In our self-focused, me-first culture, it’s hard to imagine how a marriage might “favor” society. One marriage. Your marriage. My marriage. So let’s think about this.
“Christians do not marry only for themselves: They marry in the Lord in favor of the whole community, of the entire society.” (Pope Francis, April 29, 2015)
What do others see when they look at your interactions with your beloved? That’s how you influence the world around you. Do they see Christ’s radical love lived out in your undying love for each other? Do they see his caring servanthood through the way you treat each other?
What do others learn from your example about the gift of life that God provides through his generous creativity? Do they witness God’s love multiplying beyond the two of you into an extended family with children?
The Catholic Church calls marriage a “vocation”, because couples are called by God to draw others to Christ in ways that no priest or nun can do. The Sacrament of Matrimony unites couples to the ministry of Christ just like the Sacrament of Holy Orders unites a man to the ministerial priesthood of Christ.
Rarely do we succeed in drawing others to Christ by using words of evangelism: “Repent and be saved” turns more people away from Christ than toward him. We succeed by giving Christ’s love to our sweetheart and revealing to the world our faith in Christ as it benefits our relationship — this is our calling, and Jesus is counting on us to take it seriously and actively.
- How does my sweetheart reveal God’s love to me?
- What have I done recently, in my relationship with my sweetheart, that gives the wrong impression about what it means to be a follower of Christ? What will I do to grow stronger in holiness as a result of facing this truth?
Strengthen your relationship:
In what ways has your relationship affected others? How has this fulfilled or worked against your vocation of being a couple in Christ? Pray together, asking the Holy Spirit to increase in you the awareness of your calling, as a couple, to reveal God’s love to the world around you.
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© 2018 by Terry Modica of Good News Ministries