Being One In Marriage Is About More Than Sex

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Episode Summary

Do you want to become a stronger team in your marriage? This is another raw episode as Isaac and Angie give personal insights into their independent nature before marriage, and tips on how to consistently grow stronger as you grow older. Marriage alignment takes a counter-intuitive approach and is vital to Glorifying God through your union.

In this episode, we are going to touch on marriage and having a “We Vs. Me Culture”! We want to first ask you a few questions to challenge you in your thinking. 

What mission does God have for your marriage? Now, there are some collective missions that God has purposed for all marriages but there are also unique and personal missions based upon our gifts and characters. So while we share about our purpose, our experiences and how we have changed through marriage just be thinking about what mission God has for you and your marriage. 

If you are married then this episode is for you and could potentially have a massive impact on your marriage. 

The main question of today’s episode is “have you ever thought about how your spiritual gifts affect your marriage?” 

We are called to desire spiritual gifts and to pray and ask God for them but if we approach this topic of spiritual gifts in an individualistic type of way and we are not approaching it in unity with our spouse then it could cause division. 

We have been married now for 20 years and it has been wonderful but before we were married we were very independent and strong-minded people. One of us was determined never to get married and the other didn’t even believe in marriage. We both had to die to our flesh in many ways to make our marriage work biblically.  

In this episode, we are going to go over six main points

Being One In Marriage Is About More Than Sex

  1. Our Story

  2. Spiritual Gifts

  3. The Mission Of Marriage

  4. In Our Weakness He Is Strong

  5. The Mission God Has For Your Marriage

  6. Division Or Unity In Marriage

As we have been reflecting on our last twenty years of marriage we have been observing how we have grown both individually and together as a married couple and how we are becoming one with each other more and more. 

Mark 10:7-8 says “For this reason, a man shall leave his father and mother and be joined to his wife, and the two shall become one flesh’; so then they are no longer two, but one flesh. Therefore what God has joined together, let not man separate.”

Genesis 1:26-27 says ”Then God said, “Let Us make man in Our image, according to Our likeness; let them have dominion over the fish of the sea, over the birds of the air, and over the cattle, over all the earth and over every creeping thing that creeps on the earth.” So God created man in His own image; in the image of God He created him; male and female He created them.”

There are two elements of becoming one in marriage, there is the physical element of becoming one flesh and there is also the spiritual element of becoming one flesh. This is so important to understand and to be striving after because in your marriage do you feel like you are both running the race together or do you feel like you are running the race alone? You need to take a second and reflect on your marriage and ask yourself these hard questions because this episode could help you and your marriage but if you don’t recognize the areas in your marriage that need growth then you won’t think anything applies to you and you won’t get anything out of this podcast. You must have a strong unified marriage because you are the image-bearers of Christ and the stronger your marriage is and the more it is aligned with God’s will the greater impact your marriage will have and the more useful it will be for the great commission. 

1. Our Story

  • (Angie shares her story about God changing her heart about marriage. Tune in to episode 59 to hear the full story)
  • It takes effort and continual love to become one with your spouse. You don’t get married and then all of a sudden you’re of the same mind and spirit. There are shackles of independence and selfishness and fleshly desires that God through the holy spirit relinquish over time.
  • Just like every individual has their own walk with God and they are on a different growth trajectory is the same with every single marriage. Every single married couple has that same kind of journey of becoming more and more one with each other and one with God. 
  • (Isaac shares his story about God changing his heart about marriage and bringing him to the Lord. Tune in to episode 59 to hear the full story)
  • A lot of time within a marriage the husband or the wife is thinking independently with their spiritual gifts like “oh, I wonder what my spiritual gift is so that I can so that I can be so that I can have” instead of “God what Gift do you want me to be walking in and stewarding so that I can help my spouse?” because our marriage should be our first ministry and our first priority second to God. 
  • (Isaac and Angie share about how each other’s gifts and differences inspired and helped each other grow and have an impact on the world for the kingdom of God. Tune in to episode 59 to hear the full story)

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2. Spiritual Gifts 

  • We should all desire spiritual gifts but we should desire them in a way and use them in a way that creates more unity in our marriages versus less unity. 
  • Romans 12:3-5 says “For I say, through the grace given to me, to everyone who is among you, not to think of himself more highly than he ought to think, but to think soberly, as God has dealt to each one a measure of faith. For as we have many members in one body, but all the members do not have the same function, so we, being many, are one body in Christ, and individually members of one another.”
  • So we are to think of ourselves with sober judgment and not think too highly of ourselves. 
  • It is important when it comes to spiritual gifts to have the perspective of priorities of ministry. Often people can be so focused on growing spiritually in their spiritual gift or exercising their spiritual gift that it’s a haughty thought. it becomes a selfish, prideful thought of “I need to exercise my spiritual gift.” yes, God has given each individual gifts but he has dispersed them among all so that none can become prideful. 
  • Your marriage should be your first ministry, and if God has blessed you with children then your children are your second ministry and that is also disciple-making. So, if your first ministry is your marriage and your second ministry is your family or children then you need to ask yourself, “Do I steward my gifts for the edification of my spouse, of my children, or do I do it so that I can be glorified?” when we use our God-given gifts to edify our spouse our marriages become that much more powerful for the kingdom of God. 
  • So our first ministry is our marriage, our second ministry is our kids and our third ministry should be being a part of the body of Christ. 
  • If a wife is pursuing gifts that are taking her in a different direction then her husband it is probably going to demotivate most husbands from actually leading their families. Sometimes you need to become less in your marriage, not so that your spouse can become more but so that God can become more. 
  • There are even worship songs that we sing in church that encourage less of us and more of Jesus but if we were to apply that in our lives and more specifically in our marriages then “less of me and more of you Jesus” what that means is sometimes as a wife you need to wait and sit back and pray and encourage our husbands. But that does not mean that you don’t study your bible or keep growing in your faith that is not what we are talking about in fact you should one hundred percent be growing spiritually regardless of your spouse. Sometimes you stepping back is exactly the kind of push your husband needs to step up and be the spiritual leader in the home. 
  • Passivity in the husband started a long time ago in the garden of Eden and if a man is being passive in the home and in his role as spiritual leader that is on him but the wife can also have a negative impact on a husband’s efforts to lead if she is trying to rule over the family. 
  • Do your children want to get married and leave a legacy? Do they see parents who work together as a team to raise up their children in the Lord or do they see a passive husband and an over-controlling wife? As a wife there are a lot of things that sometimes you may not realize discourage and demotivate a man in his role, there are things that make a man feel less than or feel like they can’t lead their wives. 
  • You and your spouse should have these discussions and talk about these things because God made you very very different so that when you’re combined and on the same page you can be more powerful for the kingdom of God. if you are not communicating about these things, then that means there are probably unspoken demotivators that are creating a blockage between you and your spouse and preventing you from being a magnificent team that is in unity, and out of true unity in marriage comes great fruit in your children. 
  • Genesis 2:18 says “And the Lord God said, “It is not good that man should be alone; I will make him a helper comparable to him.” Out of the ground, the Lord God formed every beast of the field and every bird of the air and brought them to Adam to see what he would call them. And whatever Adam called each living creature, that was its name. So Adam gave names to all cattle, to the birds of the air, and to every beast of the field. But for Adam there was not found a helper comparable to him.”
  • God made Eve for Adam. God made the woman perfect for the man, together they are stronger. They are equal in value but with different roles. Eve was made for Adam to be a helper as genesis 2:18 says and Adam was made to be the leader. 
  • God made you and your spouse perfect for each other. There is a grand design, there is a plan there is a mission and God gave us as a couple of different gifts to steward together for his glory. When you believe that there leaves no room for the enemy to convince you of the lie that you could have been with someone else. If you ever start thinking that way, if you ever start thinking of other people you could have married that is totally of the devil. You cannot believe those lies. You need to believe the truth and the truth is that God made you to be married to the person you are married to right now. He made you to be perfectly compatible together and to be image-bearers of Christ’s church. 
  • You should never look at another marriage and go “we should become like them” no. you need to ask God to reveal to you how he wants you and your spouse to grow together and glorify him. 

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3. The Mission Of Marriage

  • Marriage is our first ministry, and if you are married then it should be your number one ministry as well. Marriage is the image-bearer of Christ’s church and when two people in marriage become one physically and spiritually they reflect even better the glory of God.
  • As a couple, you are equal in value but different in roles and God says this very clearly in the bible. Think of any sports team that is successful, think of any company or business that is successful. In every organization, business, company, or team there are roles to be played and there is authority and there is submission and that is what makes them successful. Committees with equal power hardly ever get things done. We must understand that we are equal in value but that we embrace our God-given roles. Men, too often do they not fully or at all embrace their role in leadership, and leadership is not lording over it isn’t controlling. Leadership, true leadership is encouraging, it is empowering, its truth-telling it’s teaching, praying for and serving others. 
  • 1 corinthians 11:3 says “But I want you to know that the head of every man is Christ, the head of woman is man, and the head of Christ is God.”
  • There are so many scriptures that talk about the roles of men and women in the home and you cannot ignore it. If you don’t agree with this part of the bible you would have to take a black marker and blackout a whole lot of scriptures. Biblical roles are real and they are clear, they are not confusing and it is beautiful when it is happening correctly. When husbands are leading with love and sacrifice and when wives are allowing the husband to lead even when they know they can do it better. Does that mean that the wives aren’t leading when the husband isn’t home? no, you should be leading your children and reading the bible to them and discipling them.

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4. In Our Weakness He Is Strong

  • Your marriage should glorify Christ. It should look so different from the world, and your love should be so noticeable that people want what you have. Your kids should be excited to get married! And they should want a marriage that looks like your marriage. And if you don’t have that then something needs to change and you should be praying for that change. 
  • Here is a tip for you wives. When you want to understand something better about the bible, instead of googling it or asking your pastor or elder, ask your husband. This will create urgency in your husband to research it himself if he doesn’t understand or excitement when he does have an answer for you! 

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5. The Mission God Has For Your Marriage

  • Your marriage is your first mission, your second mission, if you have kids, is disciple-making and your third mission should be to edify the body of Christ as a team with the gifts God has given you. 
  • When you are thinking about what mission you have together you have to take inventory and figure out what gifts you and your spouse have. Is it the gift of wisdom, knowledge, spiritual discernment, prophesy, service, teaching, faith, healing, miracles, tongues, interpretation, etc. 
  • There are so many ways that you and your spouse can be working together as a team for the glory of God. you cannot underestimate the power of the marriage team. If you are dissatisfied and you don’t know what your spiritual gift is then the first person you should go to is your spouse. Your spouse knows you best! They can encourage you and build you up and remind you of who you are in Christ and what your gifts are. 

6. Division Or Unity In Marriage

  • Is your marriage reflecting unity in your mission or is it reflecting division in your mission? And you just need to look back on the three main missions. Your marriage, your family and the body of Christ. Those are the most important missions for your marriage. 
  • God is the reason why we do ministry and we need to be honest and take the rose-tinted glasses off and ask the Lord to search our hearts and evaluate if our marriage is becoming more and more unified or if we are potentially growing apart. 
  • Ephesians 5:31 says “For this reason, a man shall leave his father and mother and be joined to his wife, and the two shall become one flesh.”
  • Are you pursuing division or are you pursuing unity? 

Scripture In This Episode:

Mark 10:7-8 – “For this reason, a man shall leave his father and mother and be joined to his wife, and the two shall become one flesh’; so then they are no longer two, but one flesh. Therefore what God has joined together, let not man separate.”

Genesis 1:26-27 – ”Then God said, “Let Us make man in Our image, according to Our likeness; let them have dominion over the fish of the sea, over the birds of the air, and over the cattle, over all the earth and over every creeping thing that creeps on the earth.” So God created man in His own image; in the image of God He created him; male and female He created them.”

Romans 12:3-5 – “For I say, through the grace given to me, to everyone who is among you, not to think of himself more highly than he ought to think, but to think soberly, as God has dealt to each one a measure of faith. For as we have many members in one body, but all the members do not have the same function, so we, being many, are one body in Christ, and individually members of one another.”

Genesis 2:18 – “And the Lord God said, “It is not good that man should be alone; I will make him a helper comparable to him.” Out of the ground, the Lord God formed every beast of the field and every bird of the air and brought them to Adam to see what he would call them. And whatever Adam called each living creature, that was its name. So Adam gave names to all cattle, to the birds of the air, and to every beast of the field. But for Adam there was not found a helper comparable to him.”

1 corinthians 11:3 – “But I want you to know that the head of every man is Christ, the head of woman is man, and the head of Christ is God.”

Ephesians 5:31 – “For this reason, a man shall leave his father and mother and be joined to his wife, and the two shall become one flesh.”

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Written By Angie Tolpin
Angie has been married to Isaac for 19 years and together they have eight children, whom she homeschools. She is the Founder of CourageousMom.com, a doula, the author of the best-selling book Redeeming Childbirth, and the creator of the first ever Christian Postpartum Course. Angie loves ministering to Women and has created a few online Bible Studies on Biblical Friendship and Motherhood.

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