Monday comes again, with children back in school and people back to work and everything getting back to normal. Mondays can be hard days and not, perhaps, the best time to talk about diligence. So, let's talk about Rebekah.

The main story about Rebekah, wife of Isaac, is found later, but the story of which I speak is found in Genesis 24. We all know the story. Abraham sends his faithful servant to find a wife for Isaac. The servant finds Rebekah and brings her back with him. The scriptures tell us "and the servant told Isaac all the things that he had done. Then Isaac brought her into the tent of Sarah his mother and took Rebekah, and she became his wife, and he loved her."  Nice story. 

But think about this a minute. She, a young woman, had left her family and traveled quite a long way to meet a man she did not know. What happens next? Well, she becomes his wife. She does not know him. She has never met him or his family. They have not sat at night under the stars and talked about what it will be like when they are married. They have not discussed family planning or finances or cooking or "sharing duties in the household" or sex or anything. 

What an evening that must have been (because that is all the wedding there is in the old days, just taking her into the tent). They learned who each other was in the coolness (or warmth) of the evening. When they woke up, they started a life together about which they knew nothing. And the story ends well. He loved her.

We often picture the text in a different way. We will say that "he loved her and took her into the tent," but that is not the order of events. She became his wife first. Love came after.

You began with a great head start over Rebekah. You knew and picked your husband. You and he talked about lots of things, including marriage itself. You planned a wedding (probably) and knew where you would live and discussed "the role of women" and may have gone to church together for some time. You were sure that you "loved" him already and he "loved" you, or you would not have married him.

But there is one thing about Rebekah's story that all women know. No matter how much you talk or go to counseling before you marry, there is something different and special about waking up as a wife. No matter how much you are sure you "love" someone on the wedding day, there is no assurance that it will remain.  The number of men and women who will say they no longer love their spouse is frightening. The number who say "if only I had known" is even higher.

When someone asks "do you love your husband," they are not asking for history, but for reality. Do you love him, now that you know him? If I watched your interaction with your husband today, what would it tell me?

Do you love him?

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