Free to Be Unique
Many marriages stifle rather than free the partners to become all that God has called them to be.
By inspiring non-biblical, cultural, and religious standards and requirements, the full expression of kingdom authority that could be experienced by each partner in the marriage, as well as their collective impact, becomes limited.
Kingdom marriage releases and expands—it doesn’t restrict and limit—the legitimate dominion role of each spouse personally, as well as their impact together.
The freedom of individual uniqueness allows choice. Without personal choice and preference, a spouse can feel smothered or taken advantage of, or even lost altogether.
One woman I counseled shared with me that she went with her husband and children to the library one day, and they each decided to pick out a book.
They decided to go their separate ways, get one book each, and then meet back together to check out their books.
As the kids ran off to their respective sections and her husband went off to his, the wife just stood there, paralyzed.
For years her choices had been dictated by either the needs of her husband or those of her kids.
Her preferences had been shaped by how she could please her family or become what they needed her to be at any given moment.
Standing in the lobby of an enormous library with thousands of subjects to choose from, she didn’t know which book she wanted to read just for her own enjoyment.
The movie Runaway Bride, which came out in 1999, offers another example of losing your individuality in the act of blending with someone else.
In this film the main character, Maggie, played by Julia Roberts, had a habit of darting whenever she walked down the aisle to get married.
No one could figure out why, not even her, until late in the movie when she came to realize that she didn’t want to get married because in doing so, she would lose who she was as an individual.
As she dated each potential mate, she would take on his likes, dislikes, hobbies, and even what he liked to eat.
In one scene, a friend of Maggie’s asked her how she liked her eggs cooked. It was a profound moment, because she really didn’t know how she liked them.
In an unforgettable moment toward the end of the film, Maggie cooked herself eggs in a variety of ways to see which ones she liked the best.
How you like your eggs may not be the biggest challenge in your marriage, but maintaining your personal space, preferences, and identity just might be. It’s possible that you may not even realize it.
When so much of life converges with another human being, it’s easy to lose who you are and to let your own candle blow out.
But the greatest gift you can give your unity is to maintain your individual uniqueness.
Because when two strong and sure people come together under the Lord, utilizing their gifts, minds, and spirits according to His plan, a greater kingdom impact will occur.
This passage is an excerpt from Kingdom Marriage: Connecting God’s Purpose with Your Pleasure by Tony Evans.