You’ve watched them walking down the street, and you’ve eyed them as they’ve lead a congregation in worship. You’ve sat across from them at lunch, and you’ve read their books. You’ve seen them on social media, and heard their love story on stage.
The Christian Power Couple isn’t a myth or a legend; they exist.
Hollywood isn’t the only place where the red carpet is rolled out. Celeb magazines aren’t the only ones to ask, “Who wore it best?” A match made in heaven is not a tired figure of speech, but an idea that is alive and well in Christian culture.
God writes love stories, and you should count yourself
lucky blessed to find yourself in one of His best pieces of work.
I’ll be honest; I wanted to walk the red carpet.
I’m not certain when the desire for power couple status first surfaced on my list of life goals, but it did.
It’s possible that Adam and Eve were the first couple to conjure up the idea of perfection in my young mind or maybe it came later on down the line when Jacob served Rachel’s father for years and years in order to be with her. Aside from the biblical stories, I sat in front of couples like Eric and Leslie Ludy, and my pre-teen mind soaked up the most Christ-centered fairytale I could imagine. I graduated to the likes of Elizabeth Elliot and Josh Harris, and my heart was set on the kind of love story that would be lit by the fire of God’s glory.
Before you chalk these words up to cynicism or envy, please hear me out.
Christian couples, of the red carpet variety, gain notoriety for reasons such as their witness and the degree to which they are a blessing. It isn’t that these couples set out to be in the spotlight, but somewhere along the way they lived their lives with a purpose that others wanted to emulate. We watch the lives of power couples play out in person, in books, and online because, why not? Many of us enjoy a good love story, and maybe secretly or not so secretly, we want to be like them.
We want marriages that are twenty-five years plus and still going strong. We want beautiful smiles, and arms around each other. We like hearing about how they’re not perfect, but that they’re just like us; it makes what they have seem attainable. Perhaps most of all we want their harmony, their oneness, because it is what Christ desires for all, and how could we not desire what God desires?
Maybe you chased the God-given desire, and you got it or it got you, depending on your view of God’s sovereignty.
It was your turn to walk the red carpet of celebrity status, which you were entitled to because you had run after the heart of God and had found someone else who was of the same mind, and God would surely give His blessing on this perfect gift that was from above.
Maybe it turned out happily for you or maybe the gift turned sour, as it did for me. Maybe you found that you couldn’t walk the red carpet of church or prayer or family unity anymore.
At least in Hollywood you can still walk the red carpet alone, but it isn’t so in Christian culture.
But of course you can! Some will say.
You will hear token sermons about singleness or read that designated chapter in the book on Christian relationships, but you’re not fooled; it’s obvious that married people get all the swag.
And maybe you stop going to the events or at least you don’t attend church with the same ease or sense of place. What do you chase when you didn’t get what was promised by the church and the power couples within?
There is room for two in your bed, but you spread out to make it seem full for one. You reach out your hand to join with others, not simply because you enjoy their presence, but because you are considered to be lacking what makes up a family. You aren’t celebrated for being whole in the eyes of God, but you attend events which praise the coming together of two or the gift of life brought forth from a union of which you are not a part.
It isn’t that you cannot rejoice with those who have something you do not, you can do that, and you do. Rather, it is the ache of what is not praised that hurts, because you, the single, the unhappily married, the divorced, or the widowed, are too often seen as a project or treated as a reject; no one chases after what you have.
Chase after God, that’s where you’ll find peace for your angst. Don’t focus on what others have that you do not yet have. These are words familiar to me, and familiar to you.
These words of encouragement or admonishment may be well and good, but I fear they do not fully address the problem because these words shirk responsibility for what the church has helped to idolize. Marriage and coupled status have been elevated to a place it was never meant to sit, and in doing so, we praise a chase of celebrity.