'Therefore a man shall leave his father and mother and hold fast to his
wife, and the two shall become one flesh.' This mystery is
profound, and I am saying that it refers to Christ and the
church. However, let each one of you love his wife as himself, and let the
wife see that she respects her husband. ~Ephesians 5:31-33
Who knows how many times I've read, "This mystery is profound." I could not even begin to understand, or see a glimmer of, the depth and wondrous mystery of marriage apart from entering into such preparation. Both my heart and mind have been increasingly overwhelmed at the changes that are and will occur in my life. Any believer can attest to the truth in such passages as Ephesians 5, and even Philippians 2 when it comes to putting the interests of another above his or her own, but then one reads it with marriage in view. Regardless of the various nonverbal responses from others, I am more than thankful that my fiance' and I waited this long to become engaged. Yes, there were seasons (some longer than others) when I questioned and grew impatient in waiting for the day when he would, Lord-willing, ask me of all the women on this earth to be his wife. I can say without a doubt that this man is my best friend. He is my best friend, knows me better than anyone else, and still loves me. Apart from all that encompasses my relationship with Christ, I don't know of any other reality more humbling than this. Most people do not know this, but we rarely said "I love you" during the four years of our dating relationship. I can probably count on one hand the times when we looked into each others eyes and uttered those words. We were both always hesitant, not because we ever doubted our love for one another, but because our lives are solely in the Lord's hands. My medical problems last year revealed such truth to us more than ever, and that time early last year is one of my most vivid memories of him looking at me and telling me that he loved me regardless of what the Lord brought our way. I asked him one day last week when he knew, when he really knew that I was the one he desired to marry. He did not hesitate to tell me that it was last year during that difficult time, a time that clearly affected me individually, as well as our relationship. Can anyone describe the comfort that comes from such a realization? Can anyone explain just how wonderful and indescribable it is to know that he knew I was the one during what has been the worst season of my life to date? I cannot fully express how profound all of this is. When I am tempted to get caught up in the plans of the wedding, when I am prone to anxiety, there is a comfort beyond words that helps me persevere. That comfort is that the mystery is profound; the mystery of marriage and how it so intimately reflects Christ and the church is profound. The display of Christ's love for His church is undeserved and should move us to tears of both praise and humility.