The Ghost Bride: A match made in heaven…or hell?
Photo taken from hype
Netflix Malaysia is abuzz at the moment with the supernatural drama mystery romance, The Ghost Bride. Released in January 2020 just before Chinese New Year, The Ghost Bride is a Malaysian-Chinese story set in 19th century Melaka, about a young girl named Li Lan who is asked to marry Tian Ching, the deceased son of a wealthy family.
In a rarely-practised superstition, the girl goes into the underworld to meet her groom. She agrees to the marriage in exchange for her ailing father’s health in the real world above. In return, Tian Ching promises her eternal wealth, servants, comfort and material abundance – anything her heart desires – in the underworld.
The popular series is the first Netflix Original series in Mandarin, and boasts a majority Malaysian set and cast, including actors, directors, crew, production designers and filming locations in Penang, Butterworth, Taiping, Ipoh and Johor Bahru. The series is also based on a book of the same name by Malaysian and New York Times bestselling author Yangsze Choo.
We often hear the phrase “a match made in heaven” – or in Li Lan’s case, it’s a “match made in hell”. Often people say the latter to mean that their marriage is failing, and that both parties have found themselves to be so incompatible that they no longer wish to continue their journey together as husband and wife. Living with each other daily is like “living in hell”, and often, couples cite “irreconcilable differences” for grounds for divorce.
But does the success of a marriage hinge ultimately on compatibility only, or is there anything more to it? Is it based on an exchange of favours, like Li Lan and Tian Ching’s, to appease our family members, to win the approval of society and to get something in return? It could be a number of factors and reasons, but let’s always point back to God’s Word.
Marriage, in God’s eyes, is part and parcel of His plan for intimacy, companionship and mutual support. More than just “a piece of paper”, it’s a covenant that will strengthen and enhance a couple’s love for each other. Marriage is a lifelong commitment made in the heart and the mind, and they reflect Christ’s relationship with the Church in that they put others before self.
Indeed, if we want a marriage made in heaven that will last a lifetime, we only need to look to the Creator of heaven and all earth. – W.P.Lim
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