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      Nurturing people in the image of God since 1868.                                                                          POB 397/520 Dry Creek Rd./Smithville, TN

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AN OPEN MARRIAGE

Genesis 2:22-25 gives a beautiful description of history's first marriage, “Then the rib which the LORD God had taken from man He made into a woman, and He brought her to the man.  And Adam said: 'This is now bone of my bones and flesh of my flesh; She shall be called Woman, because she was taken out of Man.' Therefore a man shall leave his father and mother and be joined to his wife, and they shall become one flesh." As remarkable as the wedding itself is the statement made in verse 25, “And they were both naked, the man and his wife, and were not ashamed." No doubt this verse refers to physical nakedness, but it also suggests a strong emotional closeness and openness between Adam and Eve that is missing in many marriages today.  Adam and Eve had an open marriage!  Not open in the perverted way some advocate wherein each marriage partner is free to pursue extramarital affairs with the approval of the other mate.  That kind of "open" marriage is open adultery.  But open in the sense that there was a deep intimacy and bond between Adam and Eve at every level- physical, mental, emotional, and spiritual.

How "naked" is your marriage?  That is, how open are you with your married mate?  How often, how much, and how deeply do you communicate with your spouse?  The Bible says that in marriage two become one.  Sadly, far too many men and women become one in marriage only to drift away from each other until at last they split into two again through emotional distance or actual divorce.  Isolated and alienated from each other.  Rarely if ever talking and communicating beyond very shallow and superficial levels.  Closing off parts of their lives from each other.  Hiding behind a high wall which has been slowly constructed of hurt feelings, unresolved conflicts, unforgiven offenses, and unexpressed emotions.  How many marriages are slowly dying, suffocating from a lack of marriage oxygen known as communication'?

Is there something you need to say to your mate that you are holding back?  One of the worst enemies of a happy, deeply fulfilling marriage is a failure to be completely honest and open.  When was the last time you told your husband/wife you loved him/her?  When was the last time you talked about God to each other?  Do you need to say, "I'm sorry" or, "I was wrong" or, "I forgive you?" Adam and Eve were naked, and not ashamed.  A strong marriage is one where we are open and honest with our mate.

By Dan Gulley
Smithville Church of Christ