READ : Ephesians 5:21-33
“. . . far more precious than jewels.” (Prov. 31:10)
Concerning marriage Proverbs presents the good: “An excellent wife . . . is far more precious than jewels” (31:10). It presents the bad: a husband whose “slack hand causes poverty” (10:4) and who thinks “Doing wrong is like a joke” (v. 23), as well as the ugly: “Like a gold ring in a pig’s snout is a beautiful woman without discretion” (11:22).
Proverbs acknowledges the pleasure of illicit affairs, but advises: “Stolen water is sweet. . . . But he [adulterer] does not know that the dead are there” (9:17-18). Infidelity leads to death—death of marriage, death of integrity, and death of joy.
We neglect and hurt one another. We demand too much and give too little. So to Proverb’s realism we add the gospel’s guidance: “Be kind to one another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, as God in Christ forgave you” (Eph. 4:32). God can take our bitterness, anger, and nitpicking, forgive it all, and turn our hurts toward understanding and fresh beginnings. Every time we work through a problem, we lay another foundation stone in our marriage. The same goes for any relationship that needs repair.
Lord, my marriage can be only as good as I make it. Be my helper. Amen.