The Sweet Tea of Marriage

When you receive the fresh love of the Gospel from Christ and not your sinful spouse, you’re not angry when she can’t fulfill you.

At Texas Roadhouse, a shortage in sweet tea is a problem. Waiters or waitresses who would hoard the last pitcher of sweet tea for themselves were often despised, however, those who simply took the time to brew another pot were praised and respected. During a shortage of sweet tea, the ultimate problem wasn’t the empty pitcher; it was the unwillingness to start the process over. To look to the source. It’s often the same in a marriage.

 

During my senior year of college I waited tables at Texas Roadhouse just a mile down the road from the University of Kentucky. And while I wasn’t the world’s best waiter, my tips were fairly consistent because I faithfully abided by one of the most basic laws of waiting tables: keep the refills coming. More often than not, I was filling sweet tea, except when nobody had brewed another batch. At Texas Roadhouse, a shortage in sweet tea is a problem. Waiters or waitresses who would hoard the last pitcher of sweet tea for themselves were often despised, however, those who simply took the time to brew another pot were praised and respected. During a shortage of sweet tea, the ultimate problem wasn’t the empty pitcher; it was the unwillingness to start the process over. To look to the source. It’s often the same in a marriage.

In any godly marriage, you’re likely to find a husband and wife who recognize that their true source of joy and fulfillment is found in Someone bigger than themselves. (Eph. 5:22-33) In the Author and life of marriage. (John 14:6) But inside that marriage you’ll also find two people who understand that love doesn’t work like a matchbook. It’s not something we just strike up and set ablaze from raw materials. It works more like a fresh brew of sweet teawhen you receive the fresh love of the Gospel from Christ and not your sinful spouse, you’re not angry when she can’t fulfill you. You’ve found your everlasting supply. That’s when love becomes something like a pitcher and a glass. A marriage founded on the Gospel begins with the truth that we have to be filled with grace from above before we can start satisfying anyone else. We have to be filled. This is the love of Jesus in a marriage.

Too often today couples expect “true love” to work like a match, only to become impatient and even bitter when they discover that their spouse is also a sinner who loves their sin. Neither can sustain the weight of fulfilling someone else’s purpose and joy. And that’s when the blame game begins. When Adam and Eve sinned against God in the Garden, they looked to each other for fulfillment instead of God’s Word. (Gen. 3:12) Thousands of years later, divorce is fairly similar: covering sinful expectations and hurt with more sin rather than the love of God.

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