The Living Sacrament: Marriage

Matrimony is a sacrament and as such it is a sign to the world of the invisible God living in our midst - the living God who bears fruit in the lives of two people.

A sacrament is a visible sign of an invisible reality. Matrimony is a sacrament and as such it is a sign to the world of the invisible God living in our midst - the living God who bears fruit in the lives of two people. They are a continual sign of His Power in the world. There is special grace and power within every couple God has joined together. Everything they do singly or together, is a living out of their sacrament. Simple things like washing dishes, running a sweeper, driving to work, struggling to make a living, budgeting a small salary to meet big expenses - yes, these and al I the other facets of life together, have power hidden within them to make them holy. Married life is the ground of holiness, love is the seed planted by God. Life together with its agonies and joys, pain and sacrifices, frustrations and tensions, moments of exultation and despair, all act as the rain and sun, thunder and lightning on a young sprout.

The faults and weaknesses of each one are compensated for by each other's virtues. Each possesses what the other lacks. This results in a loving dependence on each other for spiritual growth and transformation. If a married couple can form a habit of looking at each other in a sacramental way - seeing the beauty of God in each other's souls - seeking to enhance that beauty by upbuilding each other- mutually growing in the image of Jesus - then that Sacrament of Matrimony bears the stamp of the living God.

Temperaments that could create many problems are looked upon as stepping stones to holiness - tools in their hands that chip away selfishness, sensitivity, anger, jealousy and greed. When personal growth in self-knowledge leads to the "putting on of Jesus," married life fulfills the purpose for which it was created.

When growth in the image of Jesus is the goal of a young couple, the faults and imperfections that soon begin to grind are taken in hand and used to build and not destroy. If one partner is gentle and the other hot-tempered it is obvious that each possesses what the other needs. For example, one whose temper has a short fuse has before him a living example of the gentleness of Jesus. If that gentleness is looked upon as a fruit that is good to possess then each partner will aid the other in their mutual ascent to God. Differences of temperament may make for incompatibility in a divorce court, but before God those differences are tools that shape and reshape each other's souls into the image of God.


 

 

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