“I choose US.” This is a simple phrase packed with a powerful lifestyle message—especially for those who are married. I heard it repeated twice in a movie that my husband Steve and I were watching the other night. And each time it caught my attention.
I Choose US!
One time the wife said it and the other, the husband. What they were saying essentially is “I choose to set aside the other possibilities. Those choices aren’t as good for both of us together as they might be for just ‘me’ as an individual. Just because I CAN do something, it doesn’t mean that I should.”
And because marriage is more about approaching life as a team together, rather than as two single people who aren’t united in this sacred union, “I choose us” is a good motto to live by when you’re married. At least, that’s the way I see it.
Over and over again, we (at Marriage Missions) hear from those who are married where their spouse made more of a decision to “choose me,” rather then “choose us.” Their choices seriously hurt their relationship (in their use of money, substances, cell phone, computer, technology use, and other ways to be with those who threaten the unity of their marriage). What they are doing is stepping outside of marriage. They’re acting as if single again, without a marital life mate to consider. They are ripping apart their marriage, one choice at a time.
Considering the “We” in Marriage
It’s not that we can’t show forth differences and individuality in marriage, because of course we can. It can even make us more interesting to our partner. Plus, it can help our marriage when we do different things. “Differences are the spices of it all,” as one man, wrote in a comment on this web site the other day. And that can be true —when we consider the “we” in our marriage relationship. But if the individuality that we exert is something that causes problems, we need to consider the toll it will take.
We’re told in 1 Corinthians 10:23, “‘Everything is permissible.’ But not everything is beneficial. ‘Everything is permissible.’ But not everything is constructive.” Another version of the Bible words it this way, “‘All things are lawful,’ but not all things are helpful. ‘All things are lawful,’ but not all things build up.”
If you apply this principle to marriage, what it means is that just because you CAN do something, or USED to do something before marrying, it doesn’t mean it’s the most “beneficial” thing to do now. If you and your spouse are in agreement, then great! Steve and I do different things all the time. We’re supportive of those things. And when we come together, our relationship is all the sweeter and richer because of it.
To Choose Us Should Be a Priority
But if it’s something that will tear against the marital relationship, it’s good to consider what you vowed on your wedding day. That, which you vowed should be a priority —your love and care for your spouse. You are no longer one, single person going through life. You are now half of a whole —part of a team together. (Read 1 Corinthians 7, which better explains what your priorities need to be after you marry.)
If what you are doing (or are considering doing) is something that tears against your relationship with your spouse —causing division between you, it’s not exactly “beneficial.” It’s one of those cases where it’s better to “choose us” —rather than getting wrapped up in selfism. You didn’t marry to live a parallel life with your spouse. You married to live together in union, helping one another to be the best you can be —both as individuals and together.
Keep in mind what we’re told in Ecclesiastes 4:9-12, concerning our union with each other as husband and wife and our union with God. May it inspire you to “choose” your spouse and your marriage rather than go off doing your own thing!
God’s Word Says:
“Two are better than one, because they have a good return for their work. If one falls down, his friend can help him up. But pity the man who falls and has no one to help him up! Also, if two lie down together, they will keep warm. But how can one keep warm alone? Though one may be overpowered, two can defend themselves. A cord of three strands is not quickly broken.“
Cindy Wright of Marriage Missions International wrote this blog.
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