Marriage Enrichment Course: The Meaning of Marriage

The Meaning of Marriage:
Facing the Challenges of Commitment with the Wisdom of God

“Marriage is glorious but hard. It’s a burning joy and strength, and yet it is also
blood, sweat, and tears, humbling defeats and exhausting victories.”  
- Timothy Keller

Marriage is a beautiful gift from God with so many blessings. And yet, as Keller's quote above reminds us, it's also work. It's work because husband and wife are both sinners and bring their own baggage to a relationship. We often do not act as we should in a marriage, and we do not respect our spouse as God's precious gift to us. So is it hopeless? Are we doomed to forever be frustrated by the weaknesses of our marriages?

Hardly! In Jesus we find the solution to our sin, apathy, and selfishness. In Jesus' relation to the church, we see the fullest expression of selfless love as he gave himself for us. He gave himself not to be an example for us, but to actually solve the problem of our sins, give us the assurance of heaven, and enable us to forgive one another as we've been forgiven.

In our marriage enrichment course, we will review God's plan and structure for marriage. Using Timothy Keller's book, The Meaning of Marriage: Facing the Challenges of Commitment with the Wisdom of God, we will see the wisdom of the plan God has for marriage and find our strength to correct our failings at his cross and empty tomb. There we find resolution to our conflicts and find the motivation, as the Apostle Paul urges all people but especially husbands and wives, to "submit to one another out of reverence for Christ" (Ephesians 5:21).

Each session will cover two chapters from Keller's book. The course will be divided like this:

Session 1 (March 21, 2:30-4:30pm)

  • The Secret of Marriage
  • The Power of Marriage

Session 2 (April 11, 2:30-4:30pm)

  • The Essence of Marriage
  • The Mission of Marriage

Session 3 (April 25, 2:30-4:30pm)

  • Loving the Stranger
  • Embracing Each Other

Session 4 (May 9, 2:30-4:30pm):

  • Singleness and Marriage
  • Sex and Marriage

When: Saturdays March 21, April 11, 25, May 9, 2015 at 2:30-4:30pm
Where: Gloria Dei Lutheran Church Sanctuary (2600 Ralston Avenue, Belmont, CA 94002)
Who: All will benefit from this course, those who have been married for a long time, a short time, couples who are engaged, just dating and single people. We all benefit from a "tune-up" in our understanding in what God's plans and designs for marriage are how we ought to treat our spouse or future spouse.
Cost: Registration is $40 per family ($20 if you register by February 22). Each couple should also gain access to a copy of Keller's book, either purchasing a copy (or copies) on their own or borrowing one. You can find the book on Amazon in a wide variety of formats including paperback, hardcover, Kindle, and audio book.
Register: You can register here by March 19, or by calling Gloria Dei at (650) 593-3361.

Questions? Comments? Email Pastor Shrimpton with any thoughts!