Live for the other

I’m a huge believer of “it’s a sign”. I’ve been on a writing slump for well over a month now. And it’s not because I don’t have things to share or write about, I just haven’t had the passion or desire to do so. It’s sad to admit because I’ve had some moments where either really funny or insightful things have happened to me, but at the moment it was happening it wasn’t possible to write, and then when it did become possible, I just wasn’t in the mood.

So I reluctantly came to the laptop a few minutes ago and decided to read up on some of the blogs I follow and a few of the words I read got me thinking about a Timothy Keller book that I started to read but had put aside because I just couldn’t find the time to read while working on finishing my Bachelors degree. So as I’m reading the latest post on one of the blogs, I thought to myself, I should finish that book now that I’m done with school and have been wanting to find a book to read. And I hesitated for a bit because there is no logic or organization to our bookshelf and plus I didn’t even know if the book was even in said bookshelf (I tend to leave things in random places).

I got up from the chair and walked to the shelf and the first thing I did was look down at the very last shelf at the very last book and it was Timothy Keller’s “The Meaning of Marriage”. It’s a sign! There was a specific section I wanted to look for that I was reminded about while reading the blog and I kid you not, I opened the book to the exact phrase I was looking for. Serious! God works in mysterious ways. Here’s the excerpt I was looking for:

Each partner is called to sacrifice for the other in far-reaching ways. Whether we are husband or wife, we are not to live for ourselves but for the other. And that is the hardest yet single most important function of being a husband or a wife in marriage.

We should consider and count the interests of others as more important than our own.

But to practice these principles inside marriage is to practice them in the most intense way…You can offer to serve the other with joy, you can make the offer with coldness or resentment, or you can selfishly insist on your own way. Only when both partners are regularly responding to one another in the first way can the marriage thrive. But how hard that is!

His words are so true. It is very hard, because it is much easier to be concerned with only our wants, needs, and just plain self centeredness. I find I do this and it is something that I truly want to work on in order to continue to enhance and help my marriage grow, because it’s a very difficult thing to truly see your actions for what they are and recognize when one is being self centered, and I know that I can’t do this on my own, but that I need the help of God and his word and the message I get through different readings, because he is what gives my marriage strength and kindness and well as Timothy Keller says “weaken the self centeredness of the soul”. And so I leave you with my next favorite passage that I’ve read thus far:

The deep happiness that marriage can bring, then, lies on the far side of sacrificial service in the power of the Spirit. That is, you only discover your own happiness after each of you has put the happiness of your spouse ahead of your own, in a sustained way, in response to what Jesus has done for you. Some will ask “if I put the happiness of my spouse ahead of my own needs – then what do I get out of it?” The answer is – happiness.

It was time that I revisited and finish reading this book. I consider it a sign.


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