THIS article is an offering about such an oft dull topic: marriage. “Dull?” I hear you say… yes, Dull!
But isn’t dull good? Seriously.
Yet I don’t at all mean dull in the sense of boring. I mean dull in the sense of utterly imperfect as in seeing yet not seeing… as in what the apostle Paul mentioned in 1 Corinthians 13:12a, “For now we see in a mirror, dimly, but then we will see face to face.”
Marriage, now, is dull, and with our partner we see dimly at best, as do they, but one day soon, when marriage is superfluous, because we shall no longer need it, we will see the Lord face to face. Our marriage with God will be delight.
Now, I am sure there are those who will read who will say, “What planet is the guy on? My marriage is magnificent!” Of course, it is. I am so thankful for mine, too. My marriage is magnificent. But not in the ways I thought it would be magnificent when I first said, “I do.” Your marriage may be sheer bliss, every moment. You do have an extraordinary marriage! But isn’t every marriage extraordinary? Every single partnering with a commitment ’til death do us part’ is a miracle of righteous romance.
Magnificent, yet dull. We are marred by our human condition, and as a man I must confess that marring is telling and fatal. It is as terrible as it is certain. My wife loves me, there is no question in that, but the fact is, she deserves more; much more than I can give. Some men say they ‘married up’. Well, we all miss the mark by a significant amount.
My thesis is that romance is ordinary. It lasts a few fleeting moments and then, as a vapour, it wafts away… but the real romance is dullness endured. That’s the real love story. Will you sit there while I cut my toe nails? Can you endure my bathroom odour? Are the errands of life something we can do together? Shall I tell you what disgusts me? Do please help me clean up the children’s messes. And… what will you do when I say, “Leave me alone?” Will you stay?
Dull, but good. Dull, magnificently dull.
How magnificent that, though we see dimly, we still have the decency to see it through to the bitter end. Through thick and thin, that is love. That there’s nothing you can do to dissuade me!
Magnificence in marriage is saying, “I am, all of me, all yours!”
Love is both partners smiling amid the truth: the good, the bad, and the ugly.