Leave and Cleave — Part I

We’re at camp this week with the boys so I’m sharing some posts on marriage.


Genesis 2:23-24 (King James Version)

23And Adam said, This is now bone of my bones, and flesh of my flesh: she shall be called Woman, because she was taken out of Man.

24Therefore shall a man leave his father and his mother, and shall cleave unto his wife: and they shall be one flesh.


While we’re looking at what God has called us to be as women, let’s just start at the beginning shall we? And since you can’t be a wife until you’re married we’ll just go from there…


Leaving…seems easy enough right? But it is sometimes the hardest of all. The marriage relationship was established right from the beginning. When we get married it’s not about playing house or riding off into the sunset with our prince charming. Because just over that first ridge is real life.


Leaving to get married doesn’t mean that we never speak to our families again or that we move out to the middle of nowhere. But leaving means that we, as wives, have a new responsibility and new role. We are now joined to our husband. We are “one flesh”. Our relationship with our husband now becomes our priority relationship. It’s where we turn to first.


I used to think this whole “one flesh” idea meant that I had to let my old self go. It meant that I couldn’t be me, I had to assimilate to him, I had to look like him (well not really), but I had to like what he liked, do what he did, do what he told me to without question (we’ll talk about submission in another post). Guess what, I don’t.


The Hebrew word for flesh is basar. It means by extension, body and kin. Extension… I think immediately of my hands. I think of how my hands look and work differently than my head, but they are an extension of me. They touch and caress my children, they work, they cradle and they love. It’s the same for my relationship with my husband. I don’t have to be the female version of him, but I do need to be an extension of him.


One flesh means that we are parts making up a whole, just as our hands and feet, shoulders, knees and elbows are all parts making up our whole body. We each do different things, but we are one. We are united. We are together. It means that our relationship with our husband is our most important human relationship.


So I have a challenge for you (and myself). I want to challenge you this week to put your husband first. Ask yourself how you can make him your more important human relationship, what can you do to foster that? If it means staying up late or getting up early to have some precious alone time with him…do it.

Next week…Cleaving…and no it’s not another kitchen gadget.