Hi, this is Bill Vanderbush, the executive pastor of Community Presbyterian Church in Celebration, FL. I want to talk to you a bit about marriage today – now don’t turn this off if you are not married, this could be for you too. Did you know that every person that gets married actually gets married to four different people? It is true. You marry the person you think they are, you marry the person they think they are, you marry the person they really are, and you marry the person they are becoming.
Problems arise when you only fall in love with one or two out of the four. What ends up happening is that let’s say, one of the other ones shows up and you think, “Oh my goodness, I got fooled.” Even if you are a believer in Jesus Christ, if you feel like you got fooled or you got married under false pretenses, it becomes somewhat easy to justify ending the relationship.
I want to go through each one of these people and see whether or not this makes some sense to you. The first one – the person you think they are. That’s the person you describe to everyone else when they are not around. That is the person in your head, the person you imagine them to be. That’s the person that you really fell in love with initially. The second is the person they think they are. The person they think they are is never quite as good as the person you think they are. Eventually, you and they have to drop everything you believe about yourself to come to this third person.
The third person is the person they are right now. That person is a person on a journey. They haven’t concluded the journey, they are still on it. My wife has a tremendous saying I love. It goes like this, “Every person’s life is a book. Never judge a book by the chapter you walked in on. Recognize that your involvement in their stories is meant to be an opportunity to help and join with them to write a glorious conclusion.” That’s the way it is. We step into each other’s journey.
We are getting to the last person – this is the most important. That is the person they are coming to. This is the person God has known since before the foundation of the world. I promise you this: if you focus on that person, in other words, constantly asking the Lord, “God would you reveal who you knew them to be from before the foundation of the world?” I believe you would actually be a prophetic influence upon their life. You would come to a place where their story concludes in victory. Not only that, but you get to participate in it.
Those are the four people you marry. If you didn’t know that before, maybe today is an opportunity for you to speak and release life into your marriage. Maybe to stop and speak and release some life into the marriages of people of those around you.
I want to pray for all the marriages that are represented in this broadcast today. Father, I pray for the covenant relationships that you brought together. God, I pray that your blessing and favor would be upon them. Father, I pray that you would prosper them, you would bring them peace into their home, and Lord, that you would bless them above and beyond all they could ask and think. Lord, I pray they would learn the fine art of falling in love with the same person more than one time in their life. Father, I pray again you would bless our homes and our families – that our families would be a testimony to a lost and broken world of what relationships can look like in the Kingdom of God. Thank you, Jesus, for all our couples. I call them “blessed” in Jesus’ name. Amen.