My wife, Erica, and I don’t remember when we met. Our grandparents were friends, our mothers were friends, and so on. We have a connection that spans a lifetime, but a much shorter relationship.
In the summer of ’97, my grandfather thought Erica and I “had the makings to be together.” The problem was that we didn’t like each other. I thought she hung around the wrong people (mainly my brothers), and she thought I was stuck-up. We joke around that maybe we should’ve listened to my grandfather back then, but the truth is we would’ve set ourselves up for failure. We were already Christians, but our foundations weren’t solid enough to withstand the storms of life together.
Some people believe that when you find “the one” meant for you, everything falls into place—that’s a myth. Although my wife is the one for me now, we wouldn’t have had a strong foundation if we’d started dating back then.
24 “Anyone who listens to my teaching and follows it is wise, like a person who builds a house on solid rock. 25 Though the rain comes in torrents and the floodwaters rise and the winds beat against that house, it won’t collapse because it is built on bedrock. 26 But anyone who hears my teaching and doesn’t obey it is foolish, like a person who builds a house on sand. 27 When the rains and floods come and the winds beat against that house, it will collapse with a mighty crash.”
Our lives will crash if we don’t construct them on a spiritual foundation—if we don’t build them on Jesus. Back in ’97, Erica’s stubbornness and my defiant nature would’ve stopped the growth in our relationship. Instead, we walked our different paths in life and grew individually, strengthening our relationships with God.
Ten years later, I was happy being single. I had become a complete version of myself because of my spiritual foundation. I stopped trying to fill my hands with the things that didn’t matter. As Christian artist Tobe Nwigwe sings, “It’s hard to receive God’s gifts when your hands are full.”
My hands, heart, and mind were free to receive God’s gift of marriage, and the same was true for Erica. We were surprised that our independent walks in faith brought us back to one another. Our twelve years of marriage haven’t been easy, but we’ve made it this far because we put Jesus’ teachings first. We understand that God helps our relationship grow.
Do you attend church as a couple? What is the foundation for your life as an individual? Do you see yourself as a complete person, or have you been looking for another person to make you complete? Do you understand that “the one” can’t save you from the struggles of life?
Build a relationship with God before you try to build one with another person. Ask your potential partner if they are pursuing God before you dive into a relationship. Participate in a Group with your significant other.
God, continue to bless us with your wisdom and love. Thank you for showing us that our homes and hearts are only as strong as the spiritual foundations we build them on. Amen.
This post was written by Jaron Camp, a regular contributor to the LivingItOut Bible Study.
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