Friday, September 28, 2012

Be Willing to Mentor Another Couple

Happy Friday Covenant Groupies,

It's an amazing day this Friday, September 28, 2012 in New York City. I pray that it's great where you are as well.

Got a question for you: You ever notice how anything that seems to matter to us, we do massive amounts of research to better understand what we're about to embark on? Whether a new house, car, vacation, job, you name it, we dig deep. Ultimately, we want that research to support that we're making the best and right decision. However, when it comes to marriage, it's highly evident by divorce stats, that the most research we do surrounds the wedding, not the sustainability of the marriage.  With the total brokenness and shortcomings of two imperfect people, do we really think we could be married and not require the help and support of another, more mature married couple?  Are we seriously that arrogant?

I recently had the opportunity to go to Little Rock Arkansas to the church of Pastor W.R. Norful, father of Grammy award-winning singer and Pastor Smokey Norful. Senior Norful was retiring after 45 years of being a Pastor and we came together to honor and celebrate him and his ministry. That's a very long time to serve others and he had been doing it since the age of 16.

As much as I was enjoying the celebration of his godly service, I was even more excited to learn that He and his wife have been married for 40 years. (SIDE NOTE: Marriage is hard in it of itself, marriage to a Pastor 10x as hard.) I applauded them along with Smokey, family and friends, but that was three weeks ago and they are still on my heart today.

Weighing oh so beautifully are the thoughts of the example they must have been and still are to other married couples, those who's marriage they've offered hope to, many who's marital possibilities they've heightened and how soul to soul, they've chosen to live out the rest of their lives together. Do they even know that they have even mentored me? 

Kevin and I never had a couple to mentor us early on in our marriage,  however we've mentored many since and along the way our mentoring of others has inadvertently served as mentorship to us. It has encouraged us, supported us, matured us, broken us, and  built us back up stronger and more aware than ever before.

We quickly learned that God never intended for us to live out marriage in solitude nor did He desire that we work tirelessly to have perfect marriages. God has always wanted His children to rely on Him, His Son and the Holy Spirit in order for marriage to be exactly what He's ordained it to be - a Covenant relationship that exemplifies Him and His church. Warts and all, marriage is so incredibly beautiful. It even makes us beautiful. 

After hearing all the testimonials of the relationship that Senior Norful and his wife have exemplified over the years I further know that healthy godly marriages are possible. What a great testimonial their marriage is to a watching world. 

It seem to me that in exactly the same way they Jesus left an example for us to follow to be the godly people we're supposed to be, it's only logical that married people are to be examples to engaged and newly married people to be the Covenant married couples that they're supposed to be.

I know it may sound crazy or unimaginable that you could mentor another couple, but you can and we all should. No matter where you are in your marriage right now on this day, you can be sure that there's a couple that you know who needs your help and support. They are going through something that maybe only you as a couple can help them with.

Your relationship does not have to be perfect, nor will it be in order to help other people, however in order to be a support system for other couples you must be willing to be completely transparent. That you must be ready for.

As much as we are and shall remain advocates of premarital counseling, because it's the ONLY way to begin a Covenant marriage, it's not what sustains it. As we move forward in our engaged and marital relationships, we all need another couple to walk alongside us.

Just as Jesus sent the disciples out two-by-two as instruments of support, encouragement, spiritual refreshment, correction and enjoyment, shouldn't we do the same as couples?

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