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The night I met my husband, Danny Lotz, I was 17 years old and had just graduated from high school. Danny had been raised in a strong Christian home by a father who was a pastor of a small church in New York City.
Danny had received Jesus Christ as a young boy at his dad's church and had taken a strong, uncompromising stand for his faith since then. He was a young girl's dream, and 15 months later we were married in the same mountain chapel where my parents had married 23 years earlier.
We moved into a small house, and at 18 years of age, when my friends were well into their college studies and planning their careers, I was grocery shopping, cooking, mopping and decorating, as well as working part time. It was wonderful!
Ten years later, we moved to a city where Danny practiced dentistry full time. By then, we had three children, and I did volunteer work and taught a weekly Bible class that was attended by 500 women.
Without my noticing it, the busyness had overtaken me, and I awoke one morning to the realization that I was in a marriage in which the love had run out! I will never forget the panicked, trapped feeling I had as I knelt in prayer, desperately pleading with the Lord for help.
If you feel trapped in a marriage where the love has run out, praise God! There is hope for you just as there was hope for me. The first step in starting over is to invite Jesus into your marriage.
JESUS WAS INVITED TO A WEDDING John has given us glorious eyewitness testimony of the identity of Jesus Christ. Yet that identity was limited by Jesus' humanity, which was like a house of curtains, veiling His deity. However, when He performed miracles or taught the truth, it was as though the curtains parted and the glory streamed through.
What a simple yet profound blessing it is to know that the first time the "curtains" parted and Jesus' glory was revealed was in a home as He celebrated a wedding! At the very start of His public ministry, the One who formed man and breathed His own life into him, the Son of God, was invited to a wedding. And He accepted the invitation! (See John 2:1-2.)
If you need a miracle in your marriage, invite Jesus into the relationship. You will be blessed by the knowledge that He is there when unexpected problems and crises arise.
JESUS WAS INFORMED OF THE CRISIS During the first century, when Israel was under Roman occupation, there was little cause for celebration. A wedding created an exception in that oppressive atmosphere.
It was to such a celebration in Cana of Galilee that Jesus, His disciples and His mother were invited. And it was during such a festive occasion that a crisis occurred--the wine ran out (see John 2:3).
In that culture and time, running out of wine would cause the newlyweds such humiliation that they would never be able to lift their heads in public again. This was a marriage in trouble almost from the moment it began.
Has the "wine"--that spirited, sparkling liquid that symbolizes passionate, affectionate love--run out of your marriage? The loss of love can occur gradually, similar to the way I expect that the wine ran out at the wedding in Cana--one glass at a time until it was gone.
When Mary learned of the crisis, she immediately informed Jesus, " 'They have no more wine'" (John 2:3, NIV). The crisis was stated simply, without explanations or suggestions about how He might fix the problem.
Although kind and respectful, Jesus' response to Mary gives the impression that He doesn't intend to do anything about the problem (see John 2:4). Sometimes Jesus' answer addresses not only the specific need we have brought to His attention but also something deeper.
Apparently Mary wanted to solve the problem for the young couple, but she also had a hidden agenda (see John 2:4). She thought this wedding celebration would be a wonderful place for Jesus to begin letting people know who He was.
Are there hidden agendas in your prayers? Are you praying for God to save your marriage to avoid being humiliated or rendered financially devastated by divorce, instead of striving to glorify Him? Jesus understands the feelings associated with our trials, but glorifying God should be our bottom-line agenda.
Mary may not have known and understood everything, but she knew Jesus cared. And she knew that in order for Him to have the freedom to make a difference, she would have to place total control of the situation in His hands.
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