Trials, Temptations, Challenges
JESUS did not promise His followers a problem free world. He had said: ‘in the world ye shall have tribulation: but be of good cheer; I have overcome the world,’ Jh 16v33. With this mindset, believers are to know, therefore, that life is not a bed of roses including marital life. Yes, marriage is for better for worse. Implicit from this is that trials, temptations and challenges may come but one should not throw in the towel.
It is unfortunate, but in life we find some that go into marriage just to fulfill all righteousness. To this category of people, when there is a challenge, trial or temptation, they are always tempted to seek a way out. Of course, the available option has been to divorce. But God bared His mind on this subject, when He spoke through Prophet Malachi: ‘…I hate divorce…’ Mal. 2v16. It is never the mind of God to cause man and woman joined in Holy matrimony to divorce. This is understandable because from the beginning, He was the one that brought marriage into being. According to Gen. 2v18 He said: ‘it is not good for the man to be alone…and He made a help meet fit for him.’
Therefore, at the wedding of Rev. and Mrs. Silas Okoh held last week at All Saints Anglican Church Warri, this view of not allowing trials, challenges and temptations to lead to divorce was re-echoed by the Lord Bishop of Diocese of Otukpo, Rt Rev. David Bello, while preaching at that marriage ceremony. He advised that rather than divorce because of life challenges; couples should take every challenge, temptation or trial to God in prayer. This, according to him, was in tandem with Philippians 4v6: ‘Be careful for nothing; but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known unto God.’ He, therefore, called on the young couple to remain unshakable in their marriage, as they serve God in this new way of life.
Speaking shortly after the Church service, the father of day, the Primate of All Nigeria, Most Rev. Nicholas D. Okoh, admonished that Christian couples should remain hopeful in every situation, trusting that God, Who brought them together, will not allow their marriage to crumble. Marriage is an experience, a life-long indissoluble union and so, couples should learn to bear with great equanimity. He prayed for the new couple to have a blissful marital life.
Some dignitaries that graced the marriage ceremony include: Most Rev. and Mrs. Nicholas D. Okoh, Rt Rev. and Mrs. D. K. Bello of Otukpo Diocese, Rt Rev. Christian Ide of Warri Diocese, Rt Rev. Emamezi of Western Izon Diocese, Ven. Ife S. Okupevi, Vicar, Church of the Resurrection, Victoria Island, Lagos, Ven. Dr. and Mrs. M. O. Iyede, Dean, Ezekiel Theological College, Ekpoma, Ven. Ernest Onuoha, Rector, Ibru International Ecumenical Centre, Ven. M. O. Onoraro, Vicar, All Saints Anglican Church, Jeffia Avenue Warri and a host of other ministers in attendance.
At the end of the ceremony, the Reverend and Mrs. Silas appreciated all that came to cheer them up and also requested that they continue to pray for them so that their marriage will not hit the rocks. They, therefore, pledged: ‘by the grace of God that trials, temptations and challenges will never make them go their separate ways.’ To this all chorused, Amen!
Ven. Ernest Onuoha
Rector, Ibru International Ecumenical Centre, Agbarha-Otor, Delta State.