You can’t marry the wrong person. I know you can probably think of at least a few cases that you would point to that would disprove that point. Maybe you’ve felt like you married the wrong person yourself. Maybe you feel that way now. If so, then please bear with me for a moment while I explain.
I have known people who are virtually paralyzed by this fear. The fear of marrying the wrong person. I have known people who become consumed with the quest to find Mr. or Mrs. Right. I have known people who believe that they did in fact marry the wrong person; and that the person they are currently married to is the right one. I don’t doubt, and wouldn’t argue the fact that some people are more or less compatible with one another. I don’t doubt that over the course of your life leading up to you future or current spouse that some of the relationships you were in were easier, or better, or worse than others.
I can confidently say that you did not marry the wrong person, and that it is in fact impossible to marry the wrong person, because of what marriage is and what it is not.
At its heart marriage is different from every other relationship you will have with another person. At its heart marriage is two people committing themselves to one another unconditionally. The man and woman speak these words to one another,
“I (insert your name), take you (insert the name of the person you are marrying), to be my husband/wife, to have and to hold from this day forward, for better, for worse, for richer for poorer, in sickness and in health, to love and to cherish, till death parts us, and I pledge you my faithfulness.”
That is marriage. Once you have made those vows to your significant other they become the right person. And by extension, any and every other person that you may meet will be the wrong person. Marriage is a commitment to remain faithful to that person no matter what.
And that is why God uses marriage to illustrate His relationship to His people. He doesn’t see marriage as a conditional agreement. He doesn’t pledge to love and forgive you only so long as you are keeping up your end of some cosmic bargain. He doesn’t pledge to stand by you so long as you can keep Him happy. In Jesus, God demonstrates that his love for you is that sort of unconditional love that marriage is meant to be.
This is the heart of the Gospel, or good news, that “God shows his love for you in that while you were still a sinner Jesus died for you.” (Romans 5:8) There will be many times that you fail to live up to what God expects from you. Times when you turn away, or walk away. But nothing you do will turn Jesus away from you. Nothing can separate you from His love. Death itself could not hold Him back.
“I am sure that neither death nor life, nor angels nor rulers, nor things present nor things to come, nor powers, nor height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God in Christ Jesus our Lord.”
– Romans 8:38-39
* Addition to the original article* Tragically, because of our sinfulness we often break what was never meant to be broken. And to compound that, we often assume that what we’ve broken cannot be fixed. Cases of domestic violence are just one of the many ways in which marriages become broken. If you or your children are in fear of your safety, then you should do all that you can to remove yourself from a position where you or someone you love may wind up hurt. But even in the most horrible situations the love of Jesus can work on cold and broken hearts. I have seen marriages that appeared broken beyond repair healed through the forgiveness that Jesus offers. But that is a tough road to walk. If you find yourself in this situation, please contact your pastor or another trained Christian counselor so that you do not walk that road alone. God’s many blessings to you!