Wednesday, February 9, 2011

Broken Marital Promises

As I wait patiently in the aisle of the checkout lane of the grocery store, I can’t help but glance at the titles of the magazines. I read about several of my most watched movie star breakups with their spouses due to the popular reasons - - irreconcilable difference or adultery. When I think about my church community, I now see over ½ of the population that are divorced.

I don’t want to write this to condemn those that have gone through divorce. I write about this topic with utmost sincerity. It is what has been on my mind. I am writing merely to understand, and to express my thoughts. I want to understand God and what He feels about divorce. I want to write the truth - - God’s truth.

So I search through Scriptures. It is what God has given me to live life. It is the Word that I teach my children when I am correcting them, and where I go when I need answers. It is also where I go to be with Him.

The more I search through the Scriptures, the more I ache for us, the people of God. We have become deceived by Satan, the world, and even ourselves. We have been listening to the enemy, that when our marriage is not what we envisioned it to be, we bail out, leave, because the grass will be greener on the other side. We have allowed the world to dictate and make up laws on what is permissible than searching through His Word about the laws of marriage, divorce and remarriage. We have even denied the knowledge of God in our hearts, and used human reasoning to justify our selfishness and taken advantage of His grace and mercy for us. We preach about love and forgiveness, but we fail to do that in our first marriage. We are to love our neighbor as ourselves but we quit at loving our spouses unconditionally. We’ve spitted out words like divorce to our spouse, and in front of our children whenever disagreement arises. Yet we are in agreement when we pray for the words of our mouths and the meditations of our hearts to be pleasing to Him. When the world looks at the church, they do not see people that walk the talk. They see us doing both but in opposite directions. Thus all this, we have rendered the power of His shed blood on the cross powerless.

Here are the most common reasons for divorce: 1. They didn’t know each other before they married, 2. They were too young, 3. They didn’t take the time for each other, 4. Unfaithfulness, 5. Addictions (sexual, pornography, drugs, alcohol), 6. Financial problems, 7. One or both were Non-believers, and 8. Abuse (physical, verbal). I empathize with all these troubles in the marriages. I must add, if there is domestic abuse, an immediate separation is required.

God hates divorce. He says it in the book of Malachi. When Jesus came to the earth, He reiterated God’s law, He didn’t change it. God is the same yesterday, today and tomorrow. Divorce breaks up families and it hurts God. We need the people of God to not accept divorce as a way out.

We need to be intentional in teaching biblical truth to the next generation. Even though we may not do it right in our marriage, it doesn’t mean they are subjected to the same. But, it is imperative we are transparent to talk about all of it, and we have to show it to them from the Word what God says. This all starts from an early age where we begin to tell them that boys and girls don’t touch. No holding hands, no kissing. We teach them to save this for the special person God has chosen for them. As they are old enough to watch TV, we monitor their time on there, even watch it with them. If we come across ‘bad parts’, we talk to them about it. There are so many shows on there now with blended families and single-parent families. These representations are not evil by any means, but they are not God’s best for us. We need to be sensitive that these things can affect them unknowingly. As they are reaching the adolescent age, we begin to talk to them about the dangers of dating and lust. We begin to tell them what God says about being unequally yoked. As parents, we are to keep the door open for them to come tell us when they are struggling with feelings for the opposite sex. We are able to help them overcome and rationalize their thoughts. To have this type of communication is one to be highly prized, for this begins when the parents are listening and talking to them when they are wee ones.

Ken has begun the discussion with our children that before they have a suitor, they must honor parental authority and responsibility. The Bible states that fathers are the head of their sons and daughters (Numbers 30 and Ephesians 6:1-4). Parental blessing and affirmation is to be consulted (Genesis 24, Proverbs 15:22).

You may think these are not culturally acceptable practices in the modern world, but the contemporary methods are severely malfunctioned. The divorce rate in the church statistically is indistinguishable from the unbelieving world. We have gone away from the biblical approaches and now it is literally a moral disaster.

I think people who have gone through the divorce and remarriage, they need to speak the biblical truth to their children. It is their duty as Christian parents to talk to them of God’s commands regarding the issue of marriage, divorce and remarriage. I have seen God restoring 2nd marriages, but this is not the intention and plan of God, and is not to be glorified. It is the grace and love of God that these relationships are prospering. How awesome is our God! The church, instead of condemning, need to help these families and nurture them so they don’t end up doing the same thing again.

I am deeply saddened when I hear of marriages ending. Each time we hear of broken marriages, we need to be on our knees praying for the restoration of the family rather than divorce, and we need to be interceding for our marriages as well, as none of us are exempt from being in the same position. Our world is fallen and it’s not going to get any better.

Finally, please find the time to read this important biblical teaching on Restoration of Christian Marriage.

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