Therefore a man shall…hold fast to his wife, and they shall become one flesh. ESV Genesis 2:24
Some days marriage is wonderful. Other days it’s a fight. Perhaps that’s why in the first mention of marriage, God said that the man must “hold fast” to his wife. Could it be that even from the beginning God realized marriages would be stretched and stressed? Could this be the first call to the man to step up and fight for his wife and his marriage? Perhaps in these few words God gave us a certain blueprint for how to fight for our marriages, and it begins with the man.
I first came across the warrior man theme in John Eldredge’s book Wild at Heart. Perhaps it’s been around in Christian circles even longer than that. Eldredge sought to appeal to the warrior aspect God embedded in all men. We see this warrior concept in the verse above as God calls men not to simply be married, but to hold fast to their wives. It gives the indication that somehow that ride may be more challenging than first thought. How many couples go into marriage blissfully unaware of the incredible difficulties they will face? In the midst of these difficulties, God calls the man to step up and hold fast to his wife regardless of the circumstances. I see this holding fast as a part of our spiritual formation.
Too often when we think of our spiritual formation, we think of Bible study, theology, prayer, fasting and the like (and these are important). However, it seems the verse above reminds us as men that holding fast to our wives in all circumstances is our primary calling. We aren’t called to drink coffee, grow beards and have deep theological discussions. Instead, we are called to fight for our wives and marriages and pursue the deep and intimate calling of a one flesh relationship. Difficult? Yes. Impossible? Nearly so. Awesome and fulfilling spirituality? Most definitely. My fellow husbands: hold fast to your wife!