Genesis 2:18 KJV - And the Lord God said, “It is not good that the man should be alone; I will make him an help meet for him.”
What exactly is a “help meet”? Why did Adam need one? I will address the later question first…why did Adam need a help meet. The answer is quite simple. It’s just how God sovereignly designed things. There was intent and purpose in creation and Adam being “alone” or “all-one” or self-sufficient was not good for what God intended. At face value, it’s not complicated. Does it get complicated in a fallen world, YUP! Are there a million questions that could follow, YUP!
Now back to the first question…what is a help meet. It’s someone “suitable” for him or “fit” for him. It’s someone “just right”. I think of a “suit” that “fits” “just right”, because it’s tailor-made. A tailored suit is not too big, and it’s not too small. It is uniquely designed just for how a particular person is built. That person is measured, so that the suit and the person wearing the suit are one. To me, that speaks to marriage.
Adam and Eve were made to be one. That’s actually the first observation that Adam has when he sees the woman. “This is bone of my bone and flesh of my flesh!” But, what does that look like? What we would love for it to mean is that we are one because we are the same. Because we think the same, and we process things the same. We want our spouse to see what we see, and agree with how we see it. The problem is, when you look at the word “help meet”…that’s not exactly what it means.
The word “help meet” can mean counterpart. Someone who is similar or even equal but opposite. In other words, we fit together as one, BECAUSE we are different! We were intentionally made different. God said (not really), “Adam let me help you bear fruit and fulfill your purpose…here’s contrast and diversity and difference!” And here lies a big reason why marriages work, and it’s also the reason many marriages fail! We see our counterpart as the enemy who is opposing us. So we fight and we go to war against them, until someone wins and someone loses.
The real question we should be asking is how do we handle difference? Do you truly and honestly see value in that which makes you suitable for each other…your differences? My fear and experience is that most marriages simply tolerate difference, but not many value and respect it.
Lord, I thank you that through you my marriage can be all that you intended it to be. Help me to see value in my spouse. Help me to see them as you do. Help us to be one, with the help of our differences, and not in spite of them.
In Christ’s Name, Amen