Summary: This is the fourth of a four-part series of sermons on godly marriage. This message focuses particularly on making your marriage last.

Welcome everyone, to We’re doing a series on relationships. We’re going to talk about the reality of relationships, a little bit more today as well as long-term relationships. We’re going to recognize some of our people who have made it 50 years or longer at the end of the service and we’re just going to talk a little bit today to kind of wrap this series up. Think just a little bit about what it means to be in it for the long haul.

What is a Cat?

1. Cats do what they want.

2. They rarely listen to you.

3. They’re totally unpredictable.

4. When you want to play, they want to be alone.

5. When you want to be alone, they want to play.

6. They expect you to cater to their every whim.

7. They’re moody.

8. They leave hair everywhere.

CONCLUSION: They’re tiny women in little fur coats.

What is a Dog?

1. Dogs spend all day sprawled on the most comfortable piece of furniture in the house.

2. They can hear a package of food being opened half a block away, but don’t hear you when you’re in the same room.

3. They can look dumb and lovable all at the same time.

4. They growl when they are not happy.

5. They leave their toys everywhere.

6. When you want to play, they want to play.

7. When you want to be alone, they want to play.

CONCLUSION: They’re tiny men in little fur coats.

Isn’t that true?

Welcome to We’re talking about relationships. Today is Sentimental Journey, and we’re talking about how to make it long-term. I wanted to kind of sum up what a good relationship takes and recognize those who have made it.

It’s not easy.

A grandmother overheard her 5-year-old granddaughter playing "wedding." The wedding vows went like this:

"You have the right to remain silent, anything you say may be held against you. You have the right to have an attorney present. You may kiss the bride."

We are going to recognize the long term marriages in here later. Can you imagine doing that in a crowd this size -- 30 years ago?

It’s a different world we live in.

I was talking with a bride about a unity candle once. I love having that as a part of the ceremony. It really signifies the whole relationship. But this bride was confused, (I don’t remember who it was and don’t know if she still goes here -- so if it’s you, just play dumb), because they also make 5, 10, 25, and 50 year anniversary candles that are the same, and she evidently had seen only them and asked me, "So, does that represent how long you want to be married? Don’t they make a FOREVER CANDLE?"

I know that many of you in this room have experience a marriage not making it, a great percentage actually. And some of you here today won’t make it.

I’m not here to make you feel bad. You didn’t want your marriage to end either. But honestly -- MAKING IT -- IS NOT the issue. I know there are a lot of people that were married for 50 years and they aren’t even remotely concerned about going to heaven or hell, because they figure they’ve already been in hell.

If we could be honest...

There was a couple at a wedding reception for a sixtieth wedding anniversary. You know, they were getting kind of hard of hearing. The woman makes a toast. She says, "After sixty years I’ve found you tried and true. The husband went, "What did she say?" She said, "After sixty years, I’ve found you tried and true." He said "What?" She said, "After sixty years, I’ve found you tried and true." And he yelled back, "After sixty years, I’m tired of you, too!"

How can we make it last? How can we have one of those relationships that we now cherish so much -- where two become one flesh and stay that way forever?


Gary Thomas, in Sacred Marriage: A wedding calls us to our highest and best--in fact, to almost impossible--ideals. I think most of us who have been married for any substantial length of time realize that the romantic roller coaster of courtship eventually evens out to the terrain of Midwest interstate--long, flat stretches with an occasional overpass. When this happens, couples respond in different ways. Many will break up their relationship and try to recreate the passionate romance with someone else. Other couples will descend into a sort of marital guerrilla warfare, a passive-aggressive power play as each partner blames the other for personal dissatisfaction or lack of excitement. Some couples decide to simply "get along." Still many others opt to pursue a deeper meaning, a spiritual truth hidden in the enforced intimacy of the marital situation.

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