Monday, February 20, 2012
A COMPLEMENTING MARRIAGE
Genesis 2:18 (MSG) GOD said, "It's not good for the Man to be alone; I'll make him a helper, a companion."
Do you realize that God made Adam, took 'him' apart, and then put 'them' back together as one in marriage? You might say that what was originally a simple life form became a much more complex union! God designed husband and wife to be 'accessories' that complement each other.
I love what the definition of complement explains;
1. something that completes or makes perfect
2. the quantity or amount that completes anything
3. either of two parts or things needed to complete the whole; counterpart.
4. full quantity or amount; complete allowance.
To complement is to provide something felt to be lacking or needed. It is often applied to putting together two things, each of which supplies what is lacking in the other, to make a complete whole.
To supplement is merely to add to. A same-sex union can only supplement what is already primarily a duplication. The diversity of marriage is as some have graphically described, the union of Mars and Venus.
Another interesting distinction is the difference between complement and compliment. While they are pronounced alike and originally shared some meanings, they have become separate words with entirely different meanings.
1. an expression of praise, commendation, or admiration.
2. a formal act or expression of civility, respect, or regard.
3. compliments, a courteous greeting; good wishes; regards: He sends you his compliments.
4. Archaic; a gift.
So to complement is 'to complete, round out', where compliment is 'to praise or admire'. You might say that when we compliment our mate, we end up also complementing them. I like that!
It is important to note that the Antonyms of compliment is: blame, censure, complaint, criticism, denunciation, insult, libel, slander. How we fail God's design and purpose when we criticize our marriage instead of complimenting it in a way that complements each other!
I have marveled over the years that of all the counsel Paul could have given husbands and wives, he simply emphasizes a single instruction to each. Listen to how forcefully he states it; Ephesians 5:33 (NASB) Nevertheless, each individual among you also is to love his own wife even as himself, and the wife must see to it that she respects her husband.
Husbands, how can you look good on your wife? Listen to how Paul explains it; “love his own wife even as himself.” Did anyone ever tell you how to love yourself? Probably not. We men tend to naturally do that pretty well...
Early in my marriage, a wise friend counseled me when my wife and I were struggling. At the end of our time together, I very humbly but magnanimously asked him to confront me if he ever noticed me being insensitive to my wife. His words were iron sharpening iron. “If you love her, I won't have to.”
I don't have to wake up in the morning and think about how to love myself. It's just there. If you are one with your wife, loving her ought to just be there too. You are on her like a clothing accessory, complementing her, because everything you do has her in mind. I like to use the word 'cherish' because it encompasses the awareness of great value.
Most people forget about the husband in Proverbs 31. What was he doing? Standing at the gate bragging about his wife.
Please be aware, this is a 'task' that is never finished. Partly because wives don't want it to ever be finished... But mostly because wives are a unique gift that God gives us fresh every day. Sandy is not the girl I married thirty-five years ago. Everyday I am challenged to be a accessory that matches the fresh surprise and gift of who she is today.
How does a wife complement her husband?
There might be a few wives reading this who say nothing they are goes with their husband. What a wonderful place to be! You have been specially chosen by God to model a new fashion! God intends for your marriage to stand out! You even have the Holy Spirit to daily assist you in making your 'accessory' work. Where people say, “I never thought they would go together... but it works. I like it!”
First, cut out the complaining and replace it with compliments.
If you want to have a happy marriage, learn the art of the compliment. Someone said, “Compliments are like magnets, and the more you compliment your husband the more he will be attracted to you.”
There have been times in my life where I as a man was 'beside myself'. I would look over and think, I can't stand being next to this guy. I can honestly say there is not one time I can remember experiencing Sandy agreeing with me.
It is specifically at those times that the complement of a honoring wife moves a man to virtue. You might say that a wife possess from God the only seed that grows great men.
The power of this principle is reflected in a negative way in the story of Abigail's dishonor of her husband Nabal resulting in his death (I Sam 25).
A friend of mine showed up one time at a church event wearing a red plaid shirt with camouflage pants. I asked him who in the world told him that goes together. He didn't think I was funny. I wasn't trying to be funny, it hurt my eyes.
We live in a time where marriage is not fashionable any more. How we need husbands and wives who are profoundly striking complements of each other!