Several years ago a worldwide campaign came out to encourage Christ followers to consider, “What would Jesus do?” It caused people to consider how Jesus would react to the very same things they were facing. We’d like to propose something like that. We’re asking you to consider the question, “What would God’s marriage ambassador do or say in the every day situations you face with each other?”
It is good as spouses to consider beforehand some things we’re tempted to say and things we’re tempted to do. As God’s marriage ambassador’s that is especially important!
But first, what is an ambassador? An ambassador is “an official representative of a government or king.” As followers of Jesus Christ, we are representatives of the King of Kings. Our goal is to point others to Him so they will want to know Him better. An ambassador is also “an authorized representative or messenger” or a “resident representative.” In other words, as an ambassador of Jesus, we are authorized by God to deliver His message, and represent Him and His values wherever we reside.
FYI: We now are making this info available in Podcast form. To listen, instead of reading this Marriage Insight, just click on the Podcast button to the right. ⇒
A Marriage Ambassador
Taking this a step further, a marriage ambassador does essentially the same thing, except it’s within the context of his or her own marriage. There are two areas in life in which we are called upon to be God’s marriage ambassador. The first includes how we “reside” with our spouse within our home. However, the second area encompasses everyone else within the home, plus, outside of the home.
It’s true that:
“Love convinces a couple that they are the greatest romance that has ever been, that no two people have ever loved as they do. As a result, they will sacrifice absolutely anything in order to be together. And then marriage asks them to prove it.” (Mike Mason)
Through it all, God asks us to prove HIM in the way we treat each other. (See: John 13:34-35.) So, we ask you… do your words and actions represent God’s love, and care for your spouse as God’s resident ambassador? Are you taking good care of your spouse by continually showing him or her God’s love?
Marriage Ambassador to Your Spouse
If you’re struggling with what that would look like, here’s a word picture from Gary Thomas to help you:
“The biggest mind-transformation for me was when I ‘got’ it that [my wife] Lisa is God’s daughter. (See: 1 John 3:1.) As his daughter she is dearly loved. (See: Ephesians 5:1.) So any correction, any challenge, has to be done with the understanding that I’m talking to God’s daughter. That calls me to offer more than respect. It also calls me to approach her with reverence and divine gratitude.
“…How I treat her says as much about how I view Him as it does about how I view her. If one of my children mess up, I know they need to be challenged. But I want it to be done with grace, understanding, and good will, not hatred, malice, slander, or making them sound worse than they are.” (From his article, “The Demonic Danger of Self-Righteousness”)
Do you really think God would expect any less from you? But what if your spouse is not living in a way that reflects God’s standards? If that is the case, prayerfully keep in mind:
“You never know, wife: The way you handle this situation might bring your husband not only back to you but to God. You never know, husband: The way you handle this situation might bring your wife not only back to you but to God.” (1 Corinthians 7:16 MSG)
Marriage Ambassador Within Your Home
In being God’s marriage ambassador to others within your home keep in mind:
“Your children are watching you. What you do leaves a more lasting impression than what you say. Those who stick together and work out those tough interpersonal problems are teaching their children invaluable lessons about life and modeling how they should persevere in their own marriages one day.” (Phil and Susy Downer, “Optimize Your Marriage”)
You may be the only example of a good spouse that children will witness. They may not have a great example in their own home of what a good marriage looks like—how a husband/wife should treat each other. You have a mission field in your marriage that can be a testimony, as you live as God would have you. As we’re told in the Bible:
“Let your light shine before men, that they may see your good deeds and praise your Father in heaven.” (Matthew 5:16)
This also includes letting your marital light of love shine before your children.
Marriage Ambassador Outside of Home
And as far as being God’s marriage ambassador and representative outside of the home, consider prayerfully:
“The home is the primary place where God invited the world to peer through the windows and take a look at love. Here the world will witness, first hand, whether or not relationships work. In other words, a world that does not know God has the opportunity to see whether or not God’s love is real and life changing. Our home life will be a magnet that God will use to attract others to Himself. ‘All men will know.’” (Jeff Hendley, from “Upside Down Marriage: For Husbands To Be And Husbands Who Are”)
Here are a few more thoughts on being a marriage ambassador to a world that needs to witness love being displayed in healthy ways within marriages:
“Without ever passing out a tract, preaching a sermon, or even saying a word, a Spirit-filled Christian home declares to all who come within reach that God will do for others what He has done for them, if they’ll only give Him a chance.” (Jerry Jenkins)
“Be imitators of God… and live a life of love, just as Christ loved us and gave Himself up for us as a fragrant offering and sacrifice to God.” (Ephesians 5:1)
“Nothing speaks louder to our culture about Christianity than our marriage relationships. Marriage is not just on display; it is also faith on display. And that’s why we need to equip and encourage each other to stay in love.” (Andy Stanley)
Biblical Marriage Under Attack
“Biblical marriage points people toward God. He ordained marriage and was there when Adam and Eve were first joined together. It is a picture and witness to this world of Christ and His Church. (Ephesians 5:31-32) It is good and holy. And Satan hates everything about it. He wishes to destroy your marriage (along with your life, testimony and family). This isn’t to scare you, but to remind you to be watchful.
“Your adversary, the devil is as a roaring lion, walking about seeking someone to devour. (1 Peter 5:8) He often uses the troubles of this world to divide a husband and wife. He’s crafty and knows how to tear couples apart. And He would love nothing more than for you to give up on each other, throw in the towel, and say to the world that marriage is too hard.” (Kimberly Williams from the Live Your Best Marriage article, When Life is Hard)
A Marriage Ambassador Points Others to Christ
“I’ve been thinking about the early church and how they were known for their love. …What if our marriages reflected that concept? What if Christian marriages reflected His kind of love? And what if the world looked at us, and they were envious of our marriages? Would they want our Jesus? (Lori Byerly)
It’s important to note Jesus’ words:
“A new commandment I give to you, that you love one another as I have loved you. By this all men will know you are my disciples, if you love one another.” (John 13:34-35)
That means that in all areas of life… especially in marriage:
“Your marriage involves ministry, and it also involves mission. Your ministry is to believers and your mission is to non-believers —allowing God to use your marriage as a means for telling others about his love. If you want God’s blessing on your marriage, then you must care about what God cares about most. What is that? He wants his lost children found and for everyone to know him and his purposes for their lives.” (Rick Warren, from the Todays Christian Woman article, “The Purpose Driven Marriage”)
Essentially, our “job” within marriage is to live so publicly, so front and center, that as people see us, they see the attributes of God lived out before them. Hence, that makes each of us a marriage ambassador. God ordains that we live in such a way that as others see how we interact with each other… they will be drawn to say, “Your God must be something else! I want to know Him like you do.”
In summary, take note of what we’re told in 2 Corinthians 5:18-20:
“All this is from God, who through Christ reconciled us to himself and gave us the ministry of reconciliation; that is, in Christ God was reconciling the world to himself, not counting their trespasses against them, and entrusting to us the message of reconciliation. Therefore, we are ambassadors for Christ, God making his appeal through us. We implore you on behalf of Christ, be reconciled to God.“
It is our hope that as ambassadors for Christ, you will join Him in the “ministry of reconciliation” to reconcile the world to Himself. As marriage ambassadors, may you join Him in the “ministry of reconciliation” with each other, and with others who could want to know Christ more as they witness your Christ-honoring love for Him, each other, and for them!
“May the God who gives endurance and encouragement give you a spirit of unity among yourselves as you follow Christ Jesus, so that with one heart and mouth you may glorify the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ!” (Romans 15:5-6)
Cindy and Steve Wright
— ADDITIONALLY —
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