I know many young women who shack up and have babies outside of the confines of marriage, and since I was once them, I ask why and they say things like:
I’d like to be married but he doesn’t want to.
We’re happy and good just like this.
My parents got married and had kids and they still ended up divorced.
My parents got divorced when I was 11 and so nothing is for sure.
He doesn’t want to get married and I am cool with that.
That’s all great if they would not have kids being dragged through all of this, but it’s generally not the case.
Remember the bible verse from Part 1: The violent dismembering of the ‘one flesh’.
So we shack up, we break up, we take those kids made in the first relationship to meet the new love, make some more kids, and everyone is supposed to be alright through all of this despite the lie. Then I saw it first hand, not from the perspective of the single mom, that I was, but rather the kids. I saw teenagers who looked normal, who were smiling, laughing, talking, shouting, running, skipping, jumping, and loving each other just moments before, teens who seemed to be carefree, raise their hands as they said the violent dismemberment of their family made them feel as if their lives were over.
It is then no wonder that living together looks so appealing. If all they know is that marriages are meant to be broken and all they cause is heartache then why would you want that? Only facts play out differently. The fact is that with some help, books and counseling, an attitude change, most marriages can be fixed. Of course we’d never advocate staying in an abusive situation, as that’s just crazy, but go back to the scripture that we read in the last post.
Malachi 2:13 And here’s a second offense: You fill the place of worship with your whining and sniveling because you don’t get what you want from God. 14 Do you know why? Simple. Because God was there as a witness when you spoke your marriage vows to your young bride, and now you’ve broken those vows, broken the faith-bond with your vowed companion, your covenant wife. 15 God, not you, made marriage. His Spirit inhabits even the smallest details of marriage. And what does he want from marriage? Children of God, that’s what. So guard the spirit of marriage within you. Don’t cheat on your spouse. 16 “I hate divorce,” says the God of Israel. God-of-the-Angel-Armies says, “I hate the violent dismembering of the ‘one flesh’ of marriage.” So watch yourselves. Don’t let your guard down. Don’t cheat. ~The Message
It’s talking about adultery here. It’s not saying you broke those marriage vows because you refused to take the trash out, or you and I had a different vision for the future, in fact God is saying, and it’s consistent in the New Testament, that the only thing that breaks the marriage vows is adultery. Even then, when I saw the teens break down at the youth conference I wondered if we adults could look at those broken kids and maybe even fix that? Maybe despite the lie that it’s only sex and it means nothing because ‘baby, you wear my ring’, we couldn’t work harder at keeping it together and keeping our kids whole. Because all I see is a generation that’s about to be violently dismembered before they even had a chance.
Actually if there is anything good about the economy tanking it’s that some people are postponing divorce. Maybe one of those couples will read this and change their mind. One can only pray.