Today’s devotional is written by Lori Steinkamp Lassen. She is our only daughter, who has been married to her husband, Scott for 27 years. Lori is the mother of four children, and has worked with the ministry for many years. May her devotional deepen your spiritual walk with the Lord. – Charlyne
Carry each other’s burdens, and in this way you will fulfill the law of Christ. Galatians 6:2
I was driving down the highway and noticed a car on the opposite side of the road fully engulfed in flames. It was shocking to see how fast the fire destroyed the vehicle and how out of control the flames looked. I tried to look for someone who had escaped the fire, but I couldn’t see much with all the traffic. I noticed the cars driving by this car on fire as if nothing was wrong. I could imagine the driver’s panic if they were standing there alone, watching their car burn to the ground while being thankful they had escaped.
This incident had obviously just happened because first responders were not even there yet. I watched briefly as hundreds of cars just rolled by, and I wondered if anyone would stop and help the driver. The driver may have felt alone and scared despite the hundreds of people within feet of them, just driving by as if nothing was happening.
It made me think about the marriages all around us that are on fire. The couples who are struggling to recall what made them fall in love with each other, couples who are trying to decide if they have the strength to face tomorrow, and couples who want to give up.
You have probably been there; you hear news of a couple getting divorced, and you may be shocked. There may have been no outside warning signs, but things were falling apart in the home. Did they let others see that their marriage was struggling? Did you slow down to see if your friends and family needed help?
Is your marriage the one on fire, or are you the person passing by?
Knowing when or how to pour into the marriages of those around us can be difficult. You may feel like it would be nosey to ask someone how they were doing in their relationship. I understand those concerns. I had a friend once who started telling those close to her how bad things were in her marriage. She had decided that unless she told people her marriage was on fire, nobody would know to stop and offer help. It took letting go of her pride to do that. She received encouragement from friends who were now able to see the fire happening in her home, and she got help.
We have to be willing to invest in the lives of our friends. I don’t just mean superficially by asking, “How are you doing,” but seeking to understand how they are genuinely doing. You could start by asking questions like:
- What is one thing I can pray for regarding your marriage?
- What is a struggle you are facing that I can join you in praying about?
- Would you ever want to talk to me confidentially about your problems?
We have to slow down long enough to look at the lives of those around us. Will you pray this week that Jesus would show you a couple who needs someone to invest in them and help extinguish the fire in their lives? It takes time, energy, and being selfless. What a blessing you could be to someone else when you take the time to help before they reach a crisis.
Now that I, your Lord and Teacher, have washed your feet, you also should wash one another’s feet. I have set you an example that you should do as I have done for you. Very truly I tell you, no servant is greater than his master, nor is a messenger greater than the one who sent him. John 13:14-16