Over these last eleven weeks, we have explored some important truths about life and marriage:
Life is meant to be a school of love. There is a meaning to life, and it is found by living out our purpose as persons created in God’s image and likeness. We are called to learn to love as God loves: in short, to become saints. Everything, including marriage and sexuality, finds its true meaning and place when seen as part of this school of love.
Marriage was designed by God as a calling where husband and wife gradually learn how to love as he loves. It is a covenant, a total gift of self between husband and wife. The gift of self in marriage is meant to be faithful, permanent, and expressed in sexual intimacy which is open to children. Through their sacrifice and love for each other, husband and wife gradually help each other to chip away their own selfishness, walking hand-in-hand towards Christ.
Sexuality reflects how we are all created by God out of love and for love. Many people will be called to live out this calling to love in the calling of marriage, but this life of love can also be lived out beautifully as a single person, a religious, or a priest.
Sexual intercourse was created by God as the physical expression of the total gift of self shared by husband and wife. Like the marital covenant itself, it serves two purposes: to unite the husband and wife as one flesh (body and soul), and to be the means by which spouses can be co-creators of new life with God. When husband and wife give themselves to one other in this way, in an authentic and total gift of self, they are giving great glory to God and allowing God’s grace to strengthen their relationship.
These are all beautiful truths that the world very desperately needs to hear. I know that it might seem a little intimidating: “I’m supposed to be a saint? And our married life is supposed to be a school of love?” But as Jesus said: “Be not afraid!” (Matt 14:27) This Gospel message is actually very liberating, and with his help, you can do it!
Some final ideas: “What can I do now?”
- Why not read a good Catholic book on marriage? Or listen to a good talk on CD?
- Why not focus on my own personal walk with Jesus, so that my own heart can be changed?
- If you are married, why not work on beginning or strengthening a simple, daily prayer time together with your spouse?