Today, my husband and I celebrate our 10th wedding anniversary. In my book, I share my path through singleness. I also share the story of how God arranged for me and Gregg, my Holy Spouse, to meet and marry.
The premise of my book and of this blog is the idea that we are all covered by a veil and that only our Holy Spouse can see us. All other suitors will reject us because they cannot fully see us.
I define our Holy Spouse as the one that God intends for us to marry. Given that definition, it is clear that I believe God arranges marriages. Is there any biblical evidence to support my belief? Let’s look at the Book of Tobit.
Book of Tobit
This is a beautiful story of God’s healing power and His providential hand in marriage. Goodness me, there are so many great lessons in this divinely inspired book! I will only be able to cover the highlights but I hope these fascinating events build your faith and confidence in God’s intimate and tender care for us.
Tobit and Tobias
Tobit was a righteous Israelite of the Tribe of Naphtali who was blinded when bird droppings fell into his eyes. Tobit had a son, Tobias. He sent Tobias to the land of Media. Tobias was accompanied by the Archangel Raphael and his dog.
Meanwhile, in faraway Media, a young woman named Sarah prayed for death. She had lost seven husbands to the demon of lust, Asmodeus, who abducted and killed every man she married on their wedding night before the marriage can be consummated. God, in response to Tobit’s prayer and Sarah’s prayer, sent the Archangel Raphael, disguised as a human, to heal Tobit (from his blindness) and to free Sarah from the demon.
Isn’t that amazing?! Sarah married 7 different men. The demon of lust, however, killed them all on the wedding night before the marriage could be consummated! Interesting! That is some mighty intervention! And, it appears that God allowed evil to ‘do its thing’ in order for His holy will to be accomplished.
Sarah had lost seven husbands and was very understandably distraught. She wished to die. Her friends taunted her and said, “You husband killer! Look at you! You’ve already had seven husbands, but not one of them lived long enough to give you a son.” Tobit 3:8
But, Sarah remembered her poor Father and how ashamed and inconsolable he would be if she were to hang herself. So, she prayed instead.
God Hears The Prayers of Tobit and Sarah
“So the prayers of them both were heard before the majesty of the great God.” Tobit 3:16
As Tobit and Sarah were praying, God in heaven heard their prayers and sent his angel Raphael to help them. He was sent to remove the white film from Tobit’s eyes, so that he could see again, and to arrange a marriage between Sarah and Tobit’s son Tobias. Raphael was also ordered to expel the demon, Asmodeus, from Sarah.
In one fell swoop, in response to Tobit’s and Sarah’s prayers, God:
- heals Tobit of his blindness and heals Sarah of the curse from the demon of lust
- arranges a marriage between Sarah and Tobias, and
- commands His Archangel Raphael to expel the demon of lust!
Along the way to Media, while washing his feet in the river Tigris, he (Tobias) was attacked by a fish which tried to swallow his foot. By order of the angel (Raphael) he captured it. The heart, liver and gall bladder were removed to make medicines, also by order of Raphael.
Upon arriving in Media, Raphael told Tobias of the beautiful Sarah. He instructs the young man to burn the fish’s liver and heart to drive away the demon when he attacks on the wedding night.
The two are married, and the fumes of the burning organs drove the demon (Asmodeas) away to Upper Egypt, while Raphael followed him to bind him. Raphael also told Tobias to use the fish’s gall to cure his father’s blindness.
What are the medicines that heal us of our blindness and allow us to see God’s will today? God imparts his powerful grace and heals us through the Sacrament of Marriage, the Sacraments of Baptism, Confirmation and Confession, the sacred sacrifice of the Mass, the Holy Eucharist and the Precious Blood of Jesus, adoration of the Blessed Sacrament, prayer, fasting, scripture and sacrifice. These are our medicines today.
Did you know that God also heals us through the marital embrace? Yes, the marital embrace is a renewal of our wedding vows and this very holy act heals us and imparts grace into our marriage!
What binds the demon of lust for us today? Chastity.
“Pray to God which is merciful, who will have pity on you, and save you: fear not, for she is appointed unto thee from the beginning; and thou shalt preserve her, and she shall go with thee. Moreover I suppose that she shall bear thee children. Now when Tobias had heard these things, he loved her, and his heart was effectually joined to her.”” Tobit 6:17
Translated, here is what the Archangel Raphael said, “Don’t be afraid. Sarah was meant to be yours from the beginning of creation. You will rescue her from the demon, and she will go with you to your home. You and Sarah will have many children, whom you will love very much. So don’t worry!” Did you notice Tobias response? He loved her. His heart was effectually (thoroughly) joined to Sarah’s. I contend that was the moment the veil was lifted and Superabundance poured in!
Raguel, Sarah’s Father, said, “I will give her to you just as the Law of Moses commands. God in heaven has arranged this marriage, so take her as your wife. From now on, you belong to each other. Sarah is yours today and forever. May the Lord of heaven keep both of you safe tonight. May he be merciful and kind to you.” Tobit 7:12
Meeting our Holy Spouse will not be a coincidence. Beautiful scripture says that you and your Holy spouse were appointed unto each other from the beginning and that God in heaven has arranged your marriage.
You may wonder, as I have, how exactly does God work it all out given the fact that we have the gift of free will? I guess the power of grace, when we are open to it, influences us. And our guardian angels can whisper in our ears and move us in specific directions. God knows ahead of time what we will do. God allows for events to influence us and somehow all the stars align at the right time.
I don’t know how He did it, but I am convinced that God arranged our marriage too.
Gregg and I met through a single catholic dating website. We were both 37 years old and neither of us had ever been married. We were both feeling a bit like Sarah. The world was looking at us as if there was something wrong with us and we had plenty of past relationship “deaths” to speak of. Despair was biting at our heels.
Gregg first contacted me in Aug 2001. He lived in Kansas and I lived in Virginia. Our meeting was not a coincidence. We were engaged in May 2002 and married in October 19, 2002. We had the most beautiful, holy wedding. And, we have a beautiful, holy marriage.
Expelling the Demon of Lust
“But before you consummate the marriage, both of you must get up and pray for the Lord in heaven to be merciful to you and to protect you.” Tobit 6:15
Check out the gorgeous painting of the Archangel Raphael binding Asmodeas, the demon of lust! Today, the medicine and remedy to lust is Chastity, both before marriage and within marriage. We are co-creators with God and we are not allowed to shut Him out of this important aspect of our marriage. We must remain open to life. We must expel the demon of lust through the power of Chastity.
Stay in God’s Will
I noticed that Tobias was brought to Sarah. She did not have to chase him. She prayed and responded to his initiation. She fought back the temptation to go against God’s will. And God worked it all out in His time.
God knows who you will marry and He can arrange your meeting if you stay in His will. Staying in His will means bathing your life and your soul in the medicines He provides. If you have strayed from Him, turn around and confess it. Start living a Sacramental life. If you have strayed from a chaste life, turn around, confess it and recommit your ‘gift of self’ to the Lord. Then, wait on your Holy Spouse and wait on our good Lord.
Happy Anniversary, Gregg. Thank you for 10 wonderful years. Thank you, Lord for arranging our marriage from the beginning of creation.