I attended a wedding a while back where the officiating minister used an interesting phrase in his wedding sermon that I had never heard used in a wedding: “Territorial Rights”. We usually use this phrase when we talk about certain countries having territorial rights or jurisdiction over certain pieces of land or waterways. But, apply that to a marriage between two independent people and we can have turf wars of our own.
Do we have ‘Territorial Rights’ once we merge our lives in marriage? Do I have rights as it pertains to “my money” versus “your money”? Do I have any rights to the TV remote control or computer time? Do I have rights to certain housekeeping chores and expect those I don’t like to be yours? Do we have a right to put ‘Do Not Trespass’ limits when it comes to lovemaking? Do I have a right to claim certain food in the fridge as my territory?
We all struggle with Territorial Rights. But you cannot survive a marriage defending your rights. Marriage is a merger of spiritual proportions. Being selfish in a marriage is like being a Christian while leaving God out of your life: doomed to failure.
What territory are you defending that needs to be surrendered?