When I had social media, I often compared pictures of couples with the user’s other posts. Without fail, every couple’s picture had significantly more likes— sometimes even double. It seems like if you want to break 100 likes, a shot of you and your significant other is a for-sure way to do it. Why is that? What is it about unity that immediately connects with so many of us?
It goes back to our identity in Christ.
Each of us is an image-bearer, made in God’s likeness. God is a social God, intimately communing within the Trinity, therefore we are social beings. No matter how introverted you consider yourself to be, each of us innately desires to be known by another.
In the same sense but on an ultimate level, we also feel the disconnect between Christ and His Church. We are in a waiting period until Jesus returns to reunite us with Christ. My pastor once described marriage as a trailer to this “movie” that we ultimately want to see.
“God created sex and marriage as a telescope to give us a glimpse of His star-sized desire for intimacy with us.”-Rebecca McLaughlin, Confronting Christianity
The purpose of marriage is to illustrate Christ’s love for His Church, to be an arrow pointing to that ultimate reality we’re all longing for. It’s not about what you could gain from someone you call your own, but how the two of you can be a testimony of something greater than yourselves.
Day in and day out will provide opportunity after opportunity to die to yourself and put your spouse first. Every interaction will be a bump, nudge, push closer to Christ-likeness— truly making you holier rather than happier.
Rebecca elsewhere said, “In one sense, human marriage is designed to disappoint. It leaves us longing for more, and that longing points us to the ultimate reality of which the best marriage is a scale model.” It’s not about being a couple but what being a couple represents.
“At its best, marriage is meant to leave us wanting more: it is a gateway drug to a far more fulfilling relationship.”-Rebecca McLaughlin, Confronting Christianity
Marriage simultaneously sends you looking for fulfillment in your Savior and provides a person for you to export what you receive from Him. Love, mercy, forgiveness, grace— traits foreign to our depraved selves, but given by God to pour into another.
At our core, we know Christ is the only thing that can fill the bottomless pit we sense in our souls. This fundamental truth ripples into our daily lives in myriads of ways, like being touched by two individuals coming together. It reminds us of the ultimate unification still to come.
Then beyond that. Think of Matthew 22:30, that “in the resurrection they neither marry nor are given in marriage.” Rebecca asks, “Why? Because marriage is a temporary state, designed to point us to a greater reality.”