Off With Your Head

Marriage is often regarded as the sacred union of two souls who come together for love, companionship, and a shared journey in life. However, the foundation of a strong and lasting marriage lies in open communication, trust, and mutual understanding. Before embarking on this lifelong commitment, it is crucial for couples to engage in candid discussions about important topics like finances, children, and cultural differences. Transparency and honesty are key ingredients in ensuring a successful marriage. In this podcast, we delve into the story of Mark and Jennifer, a couple deeply in love but entangled in a web of secrets and unspoken decisions.

Mark and Jennifer had been in a loving relationship for two blissful years. Jennifer, having lost her father during his military service, had always dreamt of marrying her soulmate and creating a dream life together. Her father's sacrifice in the Air Force had left an indelible mark on her, fostering a deep appreciation for the value of love and commitment. However, Mark, hesitant about marriage due to the failed marriages in his own family, was facing his own challenges. Recently laid off from his job, Mark was exploring new opportunities to secure their future.

A Life-Altering Decision

One day, a recruiter from the army presented Mark with a life-changing opportunity. Without consulting Jennifer, Mark seized the chance, believing that joining the army would allow him to provide the life Jennifer had always dreamed of. Full of excitement and hope, Mark surprised Jennifer with a proposal at her home. Overwhelmed with joy, Jennifer accepted, anticipating a bright future with the man she loved. However, Mark dropped a bombshell: he had joined the army and would be leaving in just three months. Jennifer was stunned and deeply disappointed by Mark's revelation. The man she had agreed to marry had withheld vital information that would drastically affect their future. Mark's decision to enlist without discussing it with her was not only a breach of trust but also a failure to acknowledge her past trauma regarding her father's military service. The sudden news left Jennifer grappling with uncertainty about the future of their relationship. Mark had failed to address the most fundamental aspect of their impending marriage—how they would navigate their relationship while he served in the military.

The Importance of Open Communication

Marriage is a commitment that should never be taken lightly. The strength of a marriage hinges on the ability of both partners to communicate openly and honestly. In Mark and Jennifer's case, Mark's failure to involve Jennifer in such a life-altering decision highlights a significant gap in their relationship. They had not even discussed the logistics of maintaining their bond during his deployment. Jennifer must confront Mark about her feelings and concerns. Despite the impending separation, they still have three months together to address these issues and potentially salvage their relationship. It's evident that Jennifer is not enthusiastic about marrying under these circumstances. She deserves the chance to express her feelings and explore their options. If Mark had communicated his intentions earlier, Jennifer might have made a different choice regarding their engagement. Now, they must grapple with the consequences of withheld information.

Withholding Information

In 2 Samuel, we find a story of betrayal and consequences that bears some resemblance to Mark and Jennifer's situation. Recab and Baanah, the sons of Rimmon, plotted against Ish Bosheth, the son of Saul, and took his life. They went as far as decapitating him and carrying his head as a trophy to King David, believing they had done a noble deed. However, much like Mark, who thought he was providing Jennifer with a better life, their intentions were misguided.

King David, who had himself experienced a similar situation when a man brought him what he thought was good news about Saul's death, reacted harshly. Instead of rewarding the messenger, David punished him. Similarly, David did not spare Recab and Baanah for their actions. He had them killed, their heads and feet severed, and their bodies hung by the pool of Hebron.


The stories of Mark and Jennifer, as well as Recab and Baanah, emphasize the significance of open and honest communication in relationships. Both instances showcase the repercussions of withholding important information from loved ones. While Mark's intentions may have been rooted in love and the desire to provide for Jennifer, his failure to consult her and share his decision has led to disappointment and uncertainty.

As we reflect on these stories, we must ask ourselves essential questions about communication, trust, and the consequences of our actions:

  1. How can couples ensure open and honest communication in their relationships, especially when facing significant life decisions?
  2. What role does trust play in the foundation of a strong and lasting marriage?
  3. Are there circumstances where it is justifiable to withhold information from a partner in a relationship?
  4. How can individuals navigate the delicate balance between pursuing their own dreams and considering the impact on their loved ones?
  5. What lessons can we draw from stories like Mark and Jennifer's and Recab and Baanah's to avoid making similar mistakes in our own lives and relationships?

In the end, the key takeaway is clear: transparency, trust, and communication are essential pillars of any successful and fulfilling relationship.