Wednesday, October 5, 2011

The Permanence of Marriage

At church on Sunday, someone gave me a copy of this article:
Mexico City lawmakers want to help newlyweds avoid the hassle of divorce by giving them an easy exit strategy: temporary marriage licenses. Leftists in the city's assembly . . . proposed a reform to the civil code this week that would allow couples to decide on the length of their commitment, opting out of a lifetime. The minimum marriage contract would be for two years and could be renewed if the couple stays happy. The contracts would include provisions on how children and property would be handled if the couple splits. 'The proposal is, when the two-year period is up, if the relationship is not stable or harmonious, the contract simply ends,' said Leonel Luna, the Mexico City assemblyman who co-authored the bill. 'You wouldn't have to go through the tortuous process of divorce,' said Luna.
I bet you have an idea what I think of this idea. It is simply ridiculous and stupid. All I could think about as I read this was why would anyone even get married. Let's be honest, what's the point? If you think there is a good enough chance the marriage is not going to work at the beginning, why even start it? The only thing more ridiculous than this just might be those in America who act as if this law is part of our legal code. Yes, you just read that. Look around. How many marriages do you know about that when the going gets tough, the easy way out is to bail. Yes, they thought things at the beginning were going to work out, but since they are not, they think they can get out of it. Even many American Christians think there is always a chance of getting out of their marriage if certain things do not happen. If their spouse never changes, then they bail.

But that is not God's plan. God's plan for marriage is always one man, one woman, as long as both shall live. This is what Jesus had to say about marriage:
"For this reason a man shall leave his father and mother and be joined to his wife, and the two shall become one flesh. So they are no longer two, but one flesh. What therefore God has joined together, let no man separate." (Matt. 19:5-6)
When a man and woman come together and are married, according to God's eyes, they become one flesh. Even human anatomy visually demonstrates this. But it is more than just sex. It is a commitment that they have made before God. And when that happens, they are not to be separated.

I like to tell people when they get married, they are going to have two options. They can either be happy and married or unhappy and married. There is no option C, which is happy and unmarried (to that person). But this raises one last thought. What is the purpose of your marriage to begin with? Is it to bring you happiness? Sure, there is much joy and happiness that can come from a good marriage relationship. But I would content to you that you are in your marriage not to be happy, but for you to become holy. There is no greater earthly relationship that is going to test your selfishness than your marriage. Maybe God has you where you are in your marriage right now because you need to grow in your holiness. You need to deal with your selfishness. You need to deal with you!

If you are struggling today, seek someone out. Call your pastor. Talk to a friend. Get help. But please don't think that you have a two year window like those in Mexico City to "try out your marriage."

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