…have marriage very much on my mind at the moment. I have the privilege this weekend of conducting my nephew’s wedding in a creek bed near Wilpena Pound (or Ikara, as it’s called in the local Adnyamathana language). Come 2.30pm Saturday afternoon, Dion and Jaimee will be ‘hitched’!

The Adnyamathana understand that their whole society is divided up into two distinct groups: the Ararru, representing the north wind, and the Mathari, representing the south wind. This difference enables their people to relate to one another in a way that gives balance and wholeness to their society. Arraru can only marry Mathari, and visa versa; this difference is essential to them being able to create a true unity in marriage; like cannot form a unity with like, but only with difference.

This reflects God’s created order where the human race is made up of two distinct groups – i.e., male and female (Gen 1:27), and it is this difference that enables them to form a true unity in marriage (Gen 2:18-24). This points every human being to the ultimate, eternal Marriage: between Jesus Christ, the Son of God, the Bridegroom, and the human race who love Him, His Bride, us – the woman He loves!

The Adnyamathana have a traditional story about a gum tree couple (Wida Ardupa). Man and wife gum tree stand together in a creek bed, strong and full of life, and surrounded by dozens of saplings – their children. May Dion and Jaimee and all of us know this unity, blessing and flourishing life in our lives, marriages, families and society!

Grace and cheers,

Rev. Jonathan Button