Monday, March 12, 2012

When Life Brings You an Earthquake...

By Monique Zackery*

5:33 a.m.

My husband and I woke suddenly to a terribly deep rumbling noise and a shaking house. I quickly opened my eyes, startled with confusion, as the bed rattled beneath me.

“It’s an earthquake!” He said, reaching his arm out to embrace me. I scooted in next to him while the walls around us trembled and sounds of glass shattering came from the dining room. He held me tight. I tucked my head into his chest in an attempt to find refuge.

A hundred thoughts raced through my mind in that moment.

Is this it?

What if the roof caves in on us?

Is this how we’re going to go?

Have I lived my life to the fullest?

Have I done all I could with my gifts and resources?

... Have I loved my husband well?

Truthfully, I had been in a foul mood the day before and I wasn’t exactly the most loving wife I could possibly be.

In a moment of totally exaggerated panic, a scene from the titanic flashed before me. You know the one. The sweet, elderly couple embrace each other in bed for the last time as the ship sinks and the water rises around them.


You might laugh at the fact that the quake only lasted about 10 seconds, but it all seemed liked slow motion! It felt like plenty of time to reflect and not enough time to do anything about it.

Finally, the house began to settle and the earth fell silent. I stayed in Curtis’ arms, eyes wide open—heart still trembling. A few moments passed with the quiet. In my mind, I sheepishly recounted the way I had responded to him just hours before the quake.

What if that was my last day with him?

I humbled myself and apologized.

Later that morning I read Carla’s latest blog post. I was stunned by the statistics she shared. I wondered why on earth marriages in ministry find themselves under such violent attack. Then I remembered… marriage is meant to reflect Christ and the Church. It is a powerful gospel tool!

I couldn’t help but think about how comforting it was to be in my husband’s arms when the frenzy of a moving earth shook our home. Isn’t that just a tiny glimpse of the incredible relationship we have with Jesus? He holds us when everything seems to come undone around us. We can find safety in the heart of God when we place our trust in Him, no matter what our circumstances.

I love how clearly Paul makes this correlation in Ephesians 5:32. After giving instructions on submitting to one another in marriage, on husbands loving their wife and wives respecting their husband, he says this:

“This is a profound mystery—but I am talking about Christ and the church.”

It’s no wonder the institution of marriage is so boldly attacked in the spirit realm, in our society, and especially in ministry. Satan hates the beauty and power of the marriage between Christ and the church. It represents true love, true grace, reconciliation, unity, and eternal life. Doesn’t it make so much sense that he would sabotage the earthly reflection of it?

The beautiful thing is that we don’t have to give in to the statistics. Even if our marriage experiences the jolt of an unexpected quake, we can trust in Jesus to hold us through it all. As we take refuge in Him, He can guide us into all truth while we wait for the earth to settle beneath us. 

Because of Christ's blood, we can respond to life's quakes by standing against the attacks of the enemy. Just as Christ laid His life down for His bride, and just as each member of the body had to die to self in order to live for Christ, I too choose to lay down my own selfishness (with the help of the Holy Spirit), in order to serve my husband in the blessing of marriage. Who's with me? :)

"My command is this: love each other as I have loved you. Greater love has no one than this: to lay down one's life for one's friends. You are my friends if you do what I command." -Jesus
May your marriage be blessed beyond measure, through thick and thin, through calm and quakes, as Christ shines in your union.

Sincerely,

Monique


* Click here to read a previous post by Monique and here to read more about her

8 comments:

  1. Monique, your words speak hope and peace "even if our marriage experiences the jolt of an unexpected quake." Thank you Sister, for your transparency in sharing God's lesson in your life and marriage.

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  2. Thank you for your words of encouragement as well, Carla! :)

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  3. Wow Monique! I can imagine that those 10 seconds were enough for your life to flash before your eyes...thankful you are ok and that God used if for good not only for you but for us as you share deep truth here about marriage, His anchor & sustaining amidst the storms and the reminder that just as the gates of Hell will not prevail against His Church neither will they against us in ministry&marriage as we cling to Him! Blessings always friend:}

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    1. Absolutely, Abby! And AMEN! God is so good. And I'm so glad that victory in Jesus is real. I too am thankful that the quake didn't cause more damage. And I'm so glad I learned from that scary moment. Thanks for your words here, friend. :)

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  4. Powerful reminder, Monique! I've never been in an earthquake, but I have experienced many storms! We do need a strong foundation to survive, don't we?

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    1. Yes, Karen, we certainly do. When we experience storms and earthquakes, It brings to life the parable of the man who built his house upon the rock. :)

      Thanks for stopping by The Garden. So glad to have you here.

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  5. Oh sometimes this marriage gig can be tough. And unfortunately, sometimes I let my marriage slip on my priority list. Thanks for your words - such a great reminder and encouragement.

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    1. Hi Jamie! You're right. It can be tough at times. Thank God for grace. :) I'm glad this reminder was a blessing to you. Thanks so much for stopping by The Garden.

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