When we experience the redemption and sanctification of the Spirit of God through Jesus, it changes everything about how we live. We go from living for ourselves, seeking personal pleasure, and using others to get what we want, to living to serve others. Philippians 2:5-7 says, “In your relationships with one another, have the same mindset as Christ Jesus: Who, being in very nature God, did not consider equality with God something to be used to his own advantage, rather, he made himself nothing by taking the very nature of a servant, being made in human likeness” (NIV).
Jesus, in his power and authority, was entitled to use human-beings as commodities for his own purpose and pleasure. Instead, he made himself nothing, took the form of a human, and made himself a servant of all by dying on the cross. This is the picture of true love that we have been given.
In marriage this means that we live to serve and love the other person in all aspects of the marriage. Instead of looking to our own interests, we look to the interests of our spouse. Instead of seeking our own pleasure, we seek to satisfy the pleasures of our spouse. The world tells us to follow the whims of our passions, desires, and emotions until we are satisfied. The world doesn’t care who gets hurt, as long as the individual is satisfied. We weren’t created to live like this.
Jesus showed us that true love is dying to yourself so that others may have life. Your marriage will prosper when you humble yourselves and seek the satisfaction of your spouse. We can freely and sacrificially do this because Christ offers us everything we need. We don’t need to look to our spouse for that fulfillment. Rather than giving 50% to each other in order to save 50% for ourselves, marriage in Christ is when each member gives 100% because they have all they need in Christ. When we have all that we need, we can overflow with 100% of ourselves in love to our spouse.
Reflection/Discussion Question: What would it look like for you to seek to fulfill the needs of your spouse rather than looking to your spouse to fulfill your needs?