[notice]A fortnightly column on marriage, family and relationships.[/notice]
CHERISH; a word that couples, the world over, say on their wedding day when they say their vows to each other. They say, “I vow to love, honour and cherish you”.
Cherish. I don’t think that many of us take the time to understand exactly what that word means. So many of us get our vows from priests, pastors and marriage officials and we say them loosely sometime. At times even if two people say their own vows they say things they do not mean; trying to sound poetic so they can score points with the crowd. They know that if they say it this way the guests will be impressed. Could this be the reason that there are so many divorces even though vows were made? Could it be that people look forward to the wedding day without giving much thought to the reality that is marriage? The reality that they will have to live with their chosen until they breathe their last breath!
Many people dream of the day of the wedding; how they will look; the decoration; who they will invite and who they will not invite; the colour scheme; everything is in such detail about the event. In the planning of the one day people don’t give themselves time to understand exactly what they would be saying; the covenant that they will be going into.
Your spouse chose you!
Have you stopped to think for a minute how special it is that out of all the billions of people on the face of the earth that your spouse chose you? They could have been with anyone else but they looked at you and they said from all the men; from all the women s/he is the one I want to spend the rest of my life with. There is something very profound and very special about that…that they want to spend their life with you. Here is someone who is willing to leave their mother and their father; their home; a place that holds so many special memories for them; a place they have known all their life. A place that most of the time symbolises love, acceptance and comfort. They are willing to leave all of that and live the rest of their days with you…They want to be with you…to share life with you. THEY PROMISE TO HONOUR YOU; TO LOVE YOU; TO BE WITH YOU ON YOUR GOOD AND BAD DAYS! They promise to always be there for and with you until death do you part. They promise to cherish you; to forsake all others and to be with you…so many of us take this demonstration of love so lightly…
Could it be that we don’t really ponder on the gravity of these words: I….. take you….I take YOU? I don’t take your job, the church. I don’t take your friends, your family but I take you the man. With all of your weaknesses; with all of your faults; with all of your strengths; with all of your good qualities and with all of your bad qualities…I take you as you are. I take you to be MY husband. There is another small word that we do not take time to ponder on — MY. This husband/wife is not anybody else’s but s/he is yours. When his and her needs must be met his and her needs need to be met by you.
It is when we forget these truths; these realities; these facts that your wife is YOUR wife; your husband is YOUR husband. Yes you might have a helper at home who helps with the housework and yes you might have a secretary at work who helps with the administrative tasks and yes you might be called to pastor a church and have leaders of different departments to help you lead the church…do not forget to everyone else you are a pastor; to anyone else you might be boss but there is one person; one SPECIAL person who calls you MINE. That woman; that man is yours to cherish. S/he is yours to love! S/he is yours to honour! S/he is yours to CHERISH! Yours to keep! YOURS!!
The dictionary defines CHERISH as: to adore, hold dear, love, care very much for, feel great affection for, dote on, be devoted to, revere, esteem, admire, appreciate. think the world of, set great store by, hold in high esteem, care for, look after, tend, protect, preserve, shelter, keep safe, support, nurture, indulge, treasure, prize, value highly, hold dear!
May we never forget our vows!
Love dearly! Love tenderly! Esteem highly. May we never forget our vows! May you CHERISH who God has given to you! A spouse is only given to you! Kids are given to two people. More than one person can call a woman their mother; a man their father; any other role is shared but God’s kind of marriage is Him giving you a spouse; a spouse you leave all for to cleave to…CHERISH YOUR GIFT BECAUSE YOUR SPOUSE IS GIVEN ONLY TO YOU! Your spouse is Heaven’s gift to you! That is profound! That is special! If you have been called to the ministry of marriage CHERISH IT!
When we forget that at the very beginning it was always about the two. It is the two people that have brought these two families together. It is the two people that have brought the children to this world. It is the two people who are used by God to pastor a church! When you neglect one another and start focusing on the things and people that are an extension of the marriage you lose the oneness that joined you together. When you do not cherish each other it is when you allow separation to creep in. No you are not married to the whole family. You are married to a man; you are married to a woman. You are not married to a job or a church. You are married to your wife; to your husband CHERISH HIM; CHERISH HER.
Hold her Dear!
Dote on him!
Be devoted to her!
Think the world of him!
Value him highly!
Hold her dear!
CHERISH HIM! CHERISH HER!