By Pastor Royston Smith
“Well, there were three of us in this marriage, so it was a bit crowded,” Princess Diana. In her interview with British journalist, Martin Bashir, she explained the bleak future of her marriage to Prince Charles. Faithfulness: the concept of unfailingly remaining loyal to someone or something is key to the survival of any marriage.
The Bible is littered with stories and advice on the virtue of faithfulness. The loyalty of Ruth has made an indelible impression on my mind. After the death of her husband, she opted to remain with her mother-in-law in a foreign land. “Do not press me to leave you or to turn back from following you! Where you go, I will go; where you lodge, I will lodge; your people shall be my people, and your God my God” (Ruth 1:16). Though fully aware of the danger she would face as an immigrant widow, Ruth faithfully returned to Bethlehem with Naomi.
The Prophet Amos placed faithfulness at the top of his life. Amos 3:3, “How can two walk together unless they are agreed?” A lack of loyalty causes disharmony in every relationship. Jeremiah describes God’s love as being fresh every day and ‘his faithfulness as being great’ (Lamentation 3:23). “Well done, good and faithful servant,” is the phrase we long to hear God speak.
Data from the Office for National Statistics (2018) revealed while the divorce rate in the UK has shown a dramatic decrease, it remains above 40%. Alongside unreasonable behaviour, adultery is the most common reason cited for divorce. Faithfulness may seem outdated, but the reality is that without it, relationships fail. A life of faithfulness begins in our minds.
We are told to be like Jesus. Jesus modelled faithfulness by committing himself to his father’s will (Hebrews 3: 1) and by sacrificing his life for the world (Romans 8:5). He went around doing good, healing the sick and restoring the hearts and minds of those who were broken. Disregarding dangers and uncertainties, he was faithful to his purpose and commitment, even to the point of death.
US Presidential candidate, Hilary Clinton has been applauded for her faithfulness despite her husband’s infidelity. Nevertheless, instead of walking away she constantly forgave and remained faithful to him throughout their marriage. Her choice has been mocked, distrusted and questioned. In her ‘Book of Gutsy Women’, she described the decision for staying in the marriage as “her gutsiest personal decision.”
How faithful are you? Do you keep your word? In this world of distractions and sensual allurements it takes guts and spiritual willpower to stay true to your commitments. Being faithful brings stability to your family, your relationships and to God. Remain Faithful.
Dear Heavenly Father, we are so thankful for your mercies. Your faithfulness is unmatched. Please help us to become more like you day by day, in the name of Jesus. Amen.