I can remember on our wedding day my pastor reading Genesis 3:29, “For this reason a man shall leave his father and his mother, and be joined to his wife; and they shall become one flesh.”
Later in the ceremony Jeff and I lit a unity candle, creating a word picture of this one flesh concept. Two separate independent lives were joining together to become something new…a family…one flame from two. It wasn’t just a reference to the physical union we would experience as husband and wife, but also to the emotional connection that we would share from that point on.
After several years of marriage, I knew many benefits of being part of one flesh. Because Jeff and I were journeying through life together, we were a team. When one of us was sick, the other could provide care. When one of us was weak, the other could be counted on to be strong. As I saw how differently God had equipped and gifted us, I could see how he designed us to compliment one another.
When our world fell apart, the concept of one flesh took on an entirely different meaning for me. In 2007 Jeff was asked to step out of ministry after another pastor discovered his secret addiction to Internet pornography. Not only were we asked to step away from ministry, we were also asked to leave the area, a community where I had expected to serve the Lord the rest of my life. In an instant, the stability and security I was so dependant upon was gone. I felt like I was in a free fall.
While Jeff was the one who was caught in sin, because we were “one flesh” I was also suffering from the consequences of his actions. I lost my ministry too. I had to say goodbye to dear friends, our first home and a church family I deeply loved. I was overwhelmed by how unfair it all was.
“This is also part of being one flesh” I felt the Lord respond. “But it’s not fair,” I replied. “I’m losing everything I love and it hurts. Why do I have to suffer for his sins?”
Again I heard – One Flesh.
I had never considered this aspect of one flesh before, but I realized it wasn’t just limited to sin and consequences. When one spouse is suffering, so too does their partner. When one spouse is sick, the other hurts deeply as well….even to the point of wishing to take on the pain on their behalf. “ One Flesh“ is intimacy in its purest form.
As we began the long process of restoration of our marriage, our One Flesh began to heal. The Lord in his loving kindness gave me the ability to see Jeff’s pornography problem as OUR marriage problem. I came to view the consequences of Jeff’s sins as God’s hand of grace in our marriage, steering us away from certain disaster and towards healthy intimacy. Without Christ, our situation would have been helpless. But because we know the Great Physician, the Surgeon Healer who can make all things new, we had all the hope of Heaven.
And our One Flesh is now stronger than ever before.
From our friends at Porn to Purity Thank you for this great blog
Originaly posted Noveber 16th 2009.