Making Your Marriage Work, Part 1: Counsel for Husbands -- By: David J. MacLeod

Journal: Emmaus Journal
Volume: EMJ 16:2 (Winter 2007)
Article: Making Your Marriage Work, Part 1: Counsel for Husbands
Author: David J. MacLeod


Making Your Marriage Work,
Part 1: Counsel for Husbands1

An Exposition of Ephesians 5:2233

David J. MacLeod

Dave MacLeod is Dean for Biblical Studies at Emmaus Bible College and is Associate Editor of The Emmaus Journal.

Four-year-old Suzie had just been told the story of Snow White for the first time in her life. She could hardly wait to get home from nursery school to tell her mother. With wide-eyed excitement she retold the fairy tale to her mother that afternoon. After relating how Prince Charming had arrived on his beautiful white horse and kissed Snow White back to life, Suzie asked loudly: “And do you know what happened then?” “Yes,” said her mom, “they lived happily ever after.” “No,” responded Suzie with a frown. “They got married!” In childlike innocence, that little nursery schooler spoke the in-depth truth without realizing it. Getting married and living happily ever after are not necessarily synonymous.2

A comic strip some time ago said a lot about the world’s cynical view of marriage: One character said, “You know, it’s odd—but now that I’m actually engaged I’m starting to feel nervous about getting married!” The other character replied, “I know what you’re thinking. It’s only natural to be nervous! Marriage is a big commitment. Seven or eight years can be a long time.”3

“The American family is in trouble. Bad trouble,” says Dallas Seminary chancellor and noted author, Charles R. Swindoll. Marriages are hurting, even Christian marriages. Strangely, the happily married couple seems an oddity in our times.4 You will actually hear young people—Christian young people—who will say, “I am never going to get married, because I have never known a married person who was happy.”

My wife and I have been married for thirty-six years. When we were dating, a preacher I met on a trip west sat me down and advised me not to get married. His own marriage was unhappy, and he was very pessimistic about marriage in general. When Linda and I were engaged, an older bachelor friend of my family took me to Cape Cod for a day in the sun. He spent the entire trip recounting stories of families we both knew in the Boston area whose marriages were in dreadful shape. I soon realized that he had no intention of celebrating my good fortune in being engaged; ...

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