My wife and I participate in our local parish Pre-Cana program helping to prepare couples for marriage, and we find this opportunity to be a great blessing to us as individuals and as a married couple. I find it particularly inspiring that Christ’s first reported miracle occurred during a marriage ceremony, for we truly need miracles to help those about to embark on this sacred mission in a society which threatens its very existence.
Normally, the phrase “Love Triangle” conjures images of infidelity, deception, and corruption of the very essence of what Christian marriage should be all about. After all, aren’t we talking about committing ourselves to one other person, through richer and poorer, in sickness and health, till death do us part? Given that promise, how can one then be in love with another person while committed to someone in Christian marriage?
The answer is simple. That Other One, to Whom we must be committed, even as we are committed to a spouse in Christian marriage is, of course, Christ. In order for our marriage to be truly blessed by the Lord, we must invite Him to every facet of that union, and trust completely in Him within that union as well. Rather than making decisions with our own personal and individual agendas in mind, or even with the combined agendas of husband and wife in mind, we must include Christ in our discussions, deliberations, and decisions as well.
The media often portrays a married couple about to make love as turning all images of Christ away, indicating that it is somehow disconcerting or uncomfortable to express physical love to a spouse with Christ overhead. While I am not suggesting that people make love surrounded by religious statues or pictures, neither am I indicating that we should make so diligent an effort to push Christ out of our love life. The truth be told, being surrounded by one hundred statues and religious pictures means nothing if the hearts, minds, and souls of those about to make love do not embrace the Presence of Christ in their marriage in all areas and on all levels.
The married couple should pray together as often as is feasible. They should ask God to bless their marriage and family whenever possible. They should teach their children to easily see God as a loving Partner in their young lives as well. If a Christian marriage is a symbol of God’s love for us, then it follows that God’s love and Presence must be embodied in any Christian marriage, not just in words or symbols, but in the very depth and essence of what that marriage is about.
Like it or not, the wine in all marriages can run out as it did in Cana. The struggles, hardships, and obstacles of life can certainly impede the spiritual progress of any union. We may often find ourselves “running on empty” in coping with the everyday difficulties which face all marriages, not to mention Christian ones. This is why we must invite Christ into our marriages, not just as an invited, temporary Guest but, more importantly, as a permanent Presence, a Source of Love rejuvenation which all marriages must have in order to survive our society’s present moral winter.
Copyright, 2014, Gabriel Garnica. All Rights Reserved.