Renew your marriage vows

by Suria Scholtz

12 February – Basket B

A Couple’s Basket February 2021

Married for 63 years, Billy and Ruth Graham’s marriage has always fascinated me. Real and honest about their challenging moments, I find their advice refreshing and their anecdotes humorous.  Like when she was asked if she’d ever consider divorcing her husband, Ruth is said to have answered, “Divorce, no, murder yes!”

Then there is the time she wrecked the family car. Billy, who was away from home at the time, unsuccessfully tried to put a stop to her driving. When Ruth refused, he said, “I don’t recall reading in Scripture that Sarah ever talked to Abraham like this.”  She responded: “Well, I don’t recall reading in Scripture that Abraham ever tried to take Sarah’s camel away from her.” [1]

Billy uses this to explain that marriage does not have to be perfect to be great, for perfection is unrealistic – and we all agree. Rather, he opts for what he terms, “happily incompatible!”  Ruth describes it like this, “If two people agree on everything, one of them is unnecessary.” Rather, she believes that the sooner a couple can adjust to each other, the faster they will be able to enjoy their togetherness. [2]

Let’s get practical!

International Marriage Day (14th):  Restore your Vows

As the 14th falls on a Sunday this year, it is really a perfect opportunity to renew your marriage vows and celebrate all that God has done through the ups and downs of your union. You can either use your old vows with a few minor changes, or you can rewrite them completely, for love certainly deepens and matures with time and you may want to give expression to such growth.

My gut says keep it personal and intimate, and therefore only invite a few close family and friends – but as your heart and your spouse dictates.  For me it is a definite yes to:

  • an elegant dress
  • a small bouquet of your favourite flowers
  • wedding bands, regardless if they are old or new
  • allowing your kids to partake, even preside over some of the events.
  • members of the original wedding party
  • asking guests to share sweet memories and pray a blessing over you
  • a special venue
  • a wedding cake – YUM!

Personally, I think it is a bit unrealistic to pull this off by the end of the week. But do keep it in mind for your next wedding anniversary or another significant and even more perfect date.Most important, make sure your event is memorable and meaningful, for you are once again standing before God and each other – as a couple, a family and a circle of friend.

The Marriage Triangle:  Closer to God = Closer to each other

The Grahams believed a good marriage consisted of three persons: the husband, the wife and God. A sentiment echoed by many. Some years ago, one of my mentors, Ina Vermaak, approached a South African artist, Marisa de Lange, to do a visual of this marriage triangle.  Marisa prayerfully approached her commission and it is such a privilege for me to share this beautiful work of art with you this month.  Keep this free download in your Bible or prayer journal and use it to pray into your own marriage, the marriage of a child or friend – as the Holy Spirit prompts.

Foundation: For no one can lay any foundation other than the one already laid which is Jesus Christ.  1 Corinthians 2:11

God:  May the grace of the Lord Jesus Christ, and the love of God, and the fellowship of the Holy Spirit be with you all.  2 Corinthians 13:14

Man:  That is why a man leaves his father and mother and is united to his wife, and they become one flesh.  Genesis 2:24

Woman:  Then the LORD God said, “It is not good that the man should be alone; I will make a helper fit for him.” Genesis 2:18.

Children:  Blessed are all who fear the LORD, who walk in obedience to him. You will eat the fruit of your labour, blessings and prosperity will be yours.  Your wife will be like a fruitful vine within your house; your children will be like olive shoots around your table.  Psalm 128: 1 – 3

Frame:  Wives, submit yourselves to your own husbands as you do to the Lord.  For the husband is the head of the wife as Christ is the head of the church, his body, of which he is the Saviour.  Now as the church submits to Christ, so also wives should submit to their husbands in everything.  Husbands, love your wives, just as Christ loved the church and gave himself up for her to make her holy, cleansing her by the washing with water through the word, and to present her to himself as a radiant church, without stain or wrinkle or any other blemish, but holy and blameless.  In the same way, husbands ought to love their wives as their own bodies.  He who loves his wife loves himself.  After all, no one ever hated their own body, but they feed and care for their body, just as Christ does the church – for we are members of his body.  Ephesians 5: 22 – 33



[1] › blog › billy-grahams-legacy-includes-a-l..

[2] › blog › billy-grahams-legacy-includes-a-l..


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