grace and marriage…

     “Where will you find the reasons to continue working on your marriage in those disappointing moments when those reasons are most needed? Well, you won’t find them in your spouse. He or she shares your condition; your spouse is still a flawed person in need of God’s transforming grace. You won’t find them in the ease of your circumstances. You still live in a world that is groaning and broken. You won’t find them in surface strategies and techniques; your struggles are deeper than that. You will only find your reasons to continue by looking up.” 

     “We struggle with God’s plan because, at street level, we don’t really want what God wants. We want what we want, and we want Him to deliver it…But God’s grace is intended to explode that. His grace purposes to expose and free you from your bondage to you. His grace is meant to bring you to the end of yourself so that you will finally begin to place your identity, your meaning and purpose, and your inner sense of well-being in Him. So He places you in a comprehensive relationship with another flawed person, and He places that relationship right in the middle of a very broken world. To add to this, he designs circumstances for you that you would have never designed for yourself. All this is meant to bring you to the end of yourself, because that is where true righteousness begins.

      “What does this practically mean? It means the trouble that you face in your marriage is not an evidence of the failure of grace. No, those troubles are grace. They are the tools God uses to pry us out of the stultifying confines of the kingdom of self so that we can be free to luxuriate in the big-sky glories of the kingdom of God.”

                                          ~ Paul David Tripp, “What Did You Expect”

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