I grew up watching – and loving – all of the Disney princess classics. Cinderella, Sleeping Beauty, Snow White, The Little Mermaid, Beauty and the Beast, and Mulan, just to name a few. My family still has a VCR so that we can pull out our original copies of our favorite princess classics! I’ve always been enamored by the princess’ beauty and grace but most of all, the romance.
Each princess has a unique story, characteristic, and personality. Cinderella and Mulan are just about as different as you can get! But one common theme ran through all of my favorite Disney princess movies: each one ended with the princess’ charm and grace winning the heart of their prince. And in my mind, it was the epitome of happiness.
Marriage is a good thing… right?
I’ve always thought of marriage (and the whole process of dating, engagement, and having a wedding) as the ultimate goal in life. If I could just find a man like all the princesses in my favorite childhood movies, marry him, and have a family, I would be fulfilled and happy. I knew that the Bible spoke many times about the blessing that marriage is. In the garden of Eden, God made Eve and gave her to be married to Adam because it wasn’t good for him to be alone. From this point on, marriage is always celebrated in scripture. It seemed like these passages lined up with my thinking – that marriage and romance was the utmost goal in life. So I was always confused by Jesus’ interaction with the Sadducees in Mark 22. The Sadducees wanted to trip Jesus up and get Him to say something that would get Him in trouble. So they set up a hypothetical scenario to test Him. A woman was married to a man, but he died. So according to the law of Moses, his brother had to marry the woman. But this man died too. This happened with seven brothers.
The Sadducees asked Jesus, “‘In the resurrection, therefore, of the seven, whose wife will she be? For they all had her.’ But Jesus answered them, ‘You are wrong, because you know neither the Scriptures nor the power of God. For in the resurrection they neither marry nor are given in marriage, but are like angels in heaven.’”
Why is there no marriage in heaven? If it is such a good and beautiful thing, why does marriage disappear in eternity? I was always puzzled and upset by this. My idea of the perfect fairytale had me believing that marriage was the ultimate.
Marriage is good, but it’s not the ultimate
I thought that marriage was the utmost goal to live for, and romance was my biggest dream. While I was right in believing in the beauty of marriage, I missed out on the purpose of this God-given design.
Revelation 19:6-7 says, “Hallelujah!For the Lord our God the Almighty reigns. Let us rejoice and exult and give him the glory,for the marriage of the Lamb has come, and his Bride has made herself ready; it was granted her to clothe herself with fine linen, bright and pure.”
The perfect marriage is in heaven
Despite what I thought, the Bible doesn’t teach that there is no marriage in heaven. In her book Confessions of a Boy Crazy Girl Paula Hendricks writes about what this passage means for those who are Christians. “Who is this Lamb-groom? It’s Jesus, who was sacrificed for your sins and mine. And this bride? That’s you and me–if we’re trusting in Jesus’ righteousness on our behalf. We’re part of the church He died for. And on this coming wedding day, Jesus will ‘present the church to himself in splendor, without spot or wrinkle or any such thing, that she might be holy and without blemish’” (Ephesians 5:27).
Marriage as we know it will come to an end. It’s temporary. But marriage is only a picture. It’s only a representation. It’s a beautiful likeness that points to the ultimate marriage between Jesus, the bridegroom, and His bride, the church.
God gave us the gift of marriage to remind us of the gospel. When we see or experience a godly marriage, it’s meant to show us how Christ pursued us, the church, and purified us through His sacrifice. But when eternity comes, we won’t need the picture. We’ll be experiencing the ultimate marriage!
A happily ever after for His bride
This brings comfort to the single woman – because marriage is not the ultimate goal, the single life has purpose . It brings hope to the woman experiencing sexual brokenness in her marriage because there is something greater yet to come. It gives the widow the strength to carry on because Jesus is our True Husband. He is the lover of our souls. Maybe this is why we crave the exclusive love from a special someone. When I start to feel the all too familiar longing for romance and marriage, it’s my prayer that I’ll be reminded that my longing is for something that is so much greater.
Even though I still love a good princess romance, it only paints a picture of the great marriage between Christ and His bride. That’s a true happily ever after….
Our next blog series takes us to the heart of every girl’s imagination… the fairytale! From the time we were little, we’ve been taught to dream big, wish upon the star, and just keep believing. But what does God’s Word have to say about the fairytale messages we’ve been recieving?
If your late night dreams and daytime wishes have you hoping for your own version of a happily ever after, this blog series is for you! <3 <3 <3
Through out the month, we are going to open the chapters of our favorite childhood fairytales to uncover the biblical realities behind our wildest fantasies.