The beauty of a healthy marriage on earth doesn’t stop inside the walls of a house or on the marriage bed. It can also model God’s grace and love, desperately needed by a world devoid of both.

How does a loving marriage point people to a loving God?

  1. A healthy marriage is first and foremost not about a feeling but about commitment. There is an intimacy between the husband and wife because each knows they belong to the other. Any struggles or problems faced do not change that commitment. As non-Christians look on our marriages, they need to see that a husband and wife’s first commitment is to the Lord and then to one another. Such a testimony gives opportunity to explain the basis for such commitment—we’re responding to the one who took our place on the cross and rose again because of His love for us. 
     
  2. A healthy marriage forgives. Any man and woman can come together, but not everyone knows how to live together. In a healthy marriage, we accept that we are all sinners and we forgive one another, pointing to the forgiveness that there is in Christ. A husband and wife forgive one another because Christ forgave them.
     
  3. A healthy marriage puts the other person first even though it means sacrificing one’s own desires and preferences. As we demonstrate that kind of sacrificial love for one another, we can introduce non-Christians to our model—Jesus Christ—who put us first by dying for us.
     
  4. A healthy marriage finds strength in Christ. All marriages have difficulties. Unexpected problems and even tragedies occur. A healthy marriage seeks His direction and strength to live through the circumstances. We can show others that with Christ we can overcome problems instead of problems overcoming us. 
     
  5. A healthy marriage knows how to overcome temptation. The best marriages have temptations—including temptation to infidelity. A healthy marriage chooses to escape the temptation because we’ve been set free from the power of sin (see 1 Cor. 10:13). A healthy marriage thus affords the opportunity to explain to non-Christians where we get the power to say “no” instead of “yes” to temptation.
     
  6. A healthy marriage is characterized by the peace that flows from our relationship with God. Because we’re at peace with God, we can be at peace with one another. This gives opportunity to explain to non-Christians that peace with God comes through a personal relationship with Jesus Christ (see Rom. 5:1).
     
  7. A healthy marriage is a happy marriage. That happiness is not found in things, circumstances or even our mate, but in Jesus Christ. When non-Christians want to find happiness in their marriage, they need to find happiness first in a relationship with Jesus Christ.
     
  8. In a healthy marriage, a husband and wife seek to compliment each other. Non-Christians may tend to be more critical of a spouse than complimentary. Praising a spouse allows us to explain where our positive outlook on life comes from—His grace toward us, which teaches us how to be graceful toward others.
     
  9. A healthy marriage is characterized by giving. The husband and wife always look for ways to give rather than get from one another. When we do so, we can point to the One who gave His life for us.

(Note: This article is adapted from The Evangelism Study Bible.)