16 September 2015

Priscilla: One Flesh

Acts 18

You left your home
and I left mine,
beginning something new.
We met, we loved -
hands intertwined,
which fingers are yours,
which fingers are mine?
Now I belong to you
and you belong to me,
no longer I,
no longer you,
but one.

not only to delight in one another
or in this feeling that awakes
each time I know you're mine.

not only to fill the gap
of longing in my heart
that needs another.

not only for the lives
this union will produce,
little Yous and little Mes.

not only to live side-by-side,
you with your cares,
I with mine.

You left your home
and I left mine.
God brought us together,
and we are one.
Now I belong to you
and you belong to me,
sharing more than our bodies
and more than our home:
sharing one calling,
sharing life.

let us pursue one goal,
and help each other draw the yoke,
for two are better than one.

let us run this race,
support each other when we fall
and pick each other up.

let us serve the Lord,
unite our strengths
and work for Him.

let us walk this road,
of one flesh
and of one mind.
No longer I,
no longer you,
but one
in Christ.


[September 2013]

So... a single girl tries to write about marriage... heh ^^;

Recently I heard that there are Christians (including pastors) in China who have difficulties in their marriage because many Christian women are married to non-Christian men (in case you did not know: more women than men are Christians in China). That makes it hard to really live marriage as partnership, supporting each other. Hearing that I decided to write Priscilla's poem - because Priscilla is an example of a woman in the Bible who worked together with her husband, so much so that they are always mentioned together (and what's really interesing is that she's even mentioned first, as though she were the one "wearing the trousers" in that relationship haha)
Anyway PRAY for those marriages in China plz~

Genesis 2:24 - Therefore a man shall leave his father and mother and be joined to his wife, and they shall become one flesh.
We once had to discuss this in Greek class (because Jesus also quotes it once in the NT). What does "one flesh" mean? To me the thought of "belonging to each other" is a very beautiful one. I once read somewhere that becoming one flesh means no longer being two individuals, but becoming like "one person". Which is why Jesus uses this verse against divorce. Being "one person" to me means sharing absolutely everything, sharing your body (1 Cor 7:4), but also not just living next to each other but caring for each other's well-being and each others wishes and dreams.
And yes, sharing absolutely everything can be a bit of a freaky thought, which is why I think marriage (i.e. total commitment) is important. You need to really be able to trust each other. You make yourself extremely vulnerable - and for this to be fair, both have to do this, and be faithful, and commit. It might be really scary, and I think many people nowadays prefer just living together because really "becoming one" and sharing everything is a very risky thing and demands all of you. But I think there's more potential in hurting each other if we do not open up to each other this way, and I think we totally miss the point and purpose of sex if we do not fully commit, if we only "become one" physically and forget about the rest. I think sex without commitment, and without the total sharing of becoming one, is ultimately damaging, and not fair to the other person or to yourself.

Ecclesiastes 4:9-12 - Two are better than one, Because they have a good reward for their labor. For if they fall, one will lift up his companion. But woe to him who is alone when he falls, For he has no one to help him up. Again, if two lie down together, they will keep warm; But how can one be warm alone? Though one may be overpowered by another, two can withstand him. And a threefold cord is not quickly broken.
I just discovered this verse as a perfect verse for describing marriage as partnership. It's more than just "being in love", it's about really sharing each other's goals and dreams and supporting each other. Not just a selfish thing all about "my feelings" (because feelings go away after a while, believe it or not, and that fact is NOT a reason to divorce and find someone else) but about the other, and about working together for each other.

2 Corinthians 6:14 - Do not be unequally yoked with unbelievers.
I picked up the "yoke" image. The way I understand this is: it's better to have the same goal. A non-Christian will not have the same ultimate goal / aim as a Christian. That will really hamper partnership. This is not saying that non-Christians are somehow "inferior", but that it will cause difficulty in marriage because you will not be working for the same end. If your aim is to glorify God with your life, and your husband does not care, it will be hard to reconcile the wishes of your husband and the wishes of God. I think one can even get that among Christians!! So check what your guy's (or girl's) life aims are, and see if they are compatible with yours, otherwise it will only cause you dilemmas later.

Oh yes and the "fingers" bit I "borrowed" from Thomas Hardy; I'm reading Tess of the d'Urbervilles and after she and Angel get married that image comes up, which I find really beautiful although in the book the one-ness did not last very long... very good book btw.

Picture by Marc Chagall

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