Devo Family Topics
Hope After ‘I Do’ – Art Fulks
A little girl recounted the story of Snow White to her mother. After telling how Prince Charming kissed Snow White, bringing her back to life, she asked, “Do you know what happened next?“
Her mom answered, “Sure, they lived happily ever after.”
The girl frowned, “No, they got married.”
Getting married and living happily ever after are not always synonymous. God created marriage to be happy, but sin disrupted it. Hope in Christ makes it possible again. 1 Peter was written to persecuted believers who faced great financial and cultural pressure. Yet he says there is hope in following God’s prescription for marriage.
Peter encourages wives to focus on their own actions, even if their spouse is unreasonable. By not preaching or nagging, God uses you to reach the heart of your husband. Ruth Graham once said, “My job is to love Billy. It’s God’s job to make him good.”
He also encourages wives to not merely focus on their appearance, but on character and attitudes. Physical beauty is quickly overshadowed by harshness or a quick temper. God places high value on spiritual fruit like gentleness and self-control. And healthy reverence for the husband’s God-given role allows His blessing and intervention even in difficulty.
Peter writes one very challenging verse directly to husbands, calling us to not simply coexist with our wives, but to do life with them. We often compete to have our needs met, but God calls and enables us to be completers of each other, to become a vivid picture of Christ.
He challenges men to intentionally work at knowing the intimate part of their wife’s heart, which takes a lifetime. Chuck Swindoll says, “Most wives who are walking with God won’t fight you for it, but they will long for it…some die longing for it.” Your pursuit of knowing her will make your wife long to be in your presence.
Finally, Peter prescribes granting wives a place of honor. She may not think like you, but she is an heir of God and He has honored you with the privilege of being her husband. No more tearing her down publicly or privately.
Taking God’s prescription is not always easy and cannot be applied only as a contingent to your spouse’s response. But you can trust God’s plan. Remember, God’s timing is not ours and He is at work.
There is hope after ‘I do’!
“You husbands in the same way, live with your wives in an understanding way, as with someone weaker, since she is a woman; and show her honor as a fellow heir of the grace of life, so that your prayers will not be hindered” (1 Peter 3:7 NASB).