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Redding, CA

Singer, songwriter, beard grower.

 

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Website and blog for songwriter Matt Stinton.

Covenant, or: how I learned to not worry about the storm.

Matt Stinton

I’ve been learning a lot about covenant recently. Part of that is unavoidable when you’re married, I’d imagine. Obviously, marriage is one of the most common forms of covenant despite society’s best efforts to avoid labeling it as such. After giving it a lot of thought, I’ve decided the best way to view covenant is as a position of the heart.

When you’re in covenant, you’re committing yourself to the other person for better or for worse, to put it in marital terms. What that is in essence saying is that no matter what sort of conflict or disturbance arises, your hearts will stay connected.

My wife and I have been married for a few months, and we, like all newlyweds, have had a thing or two to work through and work out. What I’ve learned in this process is that I cannot afford to let my heart disconnect from hers and allow our connection to suffer. The moment my connection with her begins to weaken is the moment when fear, doubt and a plethora of other negative emotions begin to enter the relationship. The Lord designed covenant to be a shelter in a storm, but if you focus on the storm, you enable it to reach you.

The key to keeping your hearts connected is to remember your covenant and what it means to both of you. When you truly commit to someone, storms no longer pose a threat. Yes, it pretty much always means a little work, but if you choose to keep your heart on the other side of the conflict, the side where everything is already resolved, it completely changes your approach to the situation. You no longer entertain questions like “Is this going to be the end of us?” because you have decided to keep your heart unaffected. The sort of worrying that happens when you begin to entertain fear undermines your relationship and always makes working through issues more difficult.

{On a side note, worry always takes your peace. Notice I said “takes” and not “steals,” because I don’t think peace can actually be stolen. I think it’s only given away by choosing to focus on fear rather than love.} Keeping your eyes on the prize, which is the other person’s heart, removes fear from any place of influence in your relationship. It is work, especially at first, but the more you choose to love in the midst of conflict, the easier it is to do so.

Covenant is a truly beautiful thing and teaches us so much about the Father’s love for us. He is not afraid of sin, nor is He afraid of our mistakes. He has made a covenant with us, and no height, depth or any other thing can separate us from His love and affection.