Do you ever stop to think about why people get married? We often believe its because they love their significant other. Sometimes, its because they are having a child together or in the worst case….they are desperately lonely or on the rebound. To complicate the matter, many marriages are birthed out of a deep feeling of inadequacy. The church has played a huge role in the last case.
I highly believe the church has glamorized marriage to the point that this beautification ends up being poison in the lives of many couples…who sadly divorce. Remember Cinderella? The fairy tale of a “happily ever after”? Well, the church has been pushing around that story around…only thing is that itiss on steroids within the Christian community.
Why do you say that?
Well, I have seen first-hand that many persons marry for the wrong reasons. It is believed that a man is the answer to every woman’s loneliness and brokenness. That having a strong, capable, caring and God-fearing man as a husband will soothe every childhood hurt and erase the days of feeling lonely, depressed and blue.
For men, it is believed that having a wife means unlimited sex, a female that’s available on demand to finally erase the one deadly, sinful weapon in his life – lust. Well, what do you get when we perpetuate these lies? Many marriages, beginning with a big bang – happiness, gratefulness and the high expectation of this joy never failing; only to be crushed and devastated.
This sort of marriage, just like many other coping mechanisms, cannot replace God in our lives nor the need to do the hard, deep soul work to address the ills we believe marriage will fix. Ultimately, they divorce. I am yet to see a marriage founded on these lies last more than 7 years.
It is not fair, nor is it right, to believe as Christians that marriage is the beginning of happily ever after. The hard truth is your spouse will hurt you.
Just as at times, your parents hurt you, your best friend hurts you or your co-workers hurt you.
Maybe, depending on the nature of your marriage, your spouse won’t hurt you intentionally like others did in the past, but they will still hurt you by accident. We need to face it, our spouses are not Jesus, so they are not perfect. They are bound to slip up and do and say things that we don’t like. We are also bound to do the same, by the mere fact we are imperfect, fallen humans.
Don’t marry believing a lie
And that’s the issue I have with the glamorization of marriage. We don’t remember that after the honeymoon, bills happen, arguments happen, sickness happens, loss happens…..that if we are going to factor in the good we must remember ….there will also be bad - And we must prepare for it.
Or else? The two spouses who were deceived by the church and society now find that their parade has been rained on and now…they must make an exit, because they were not looking to serve and truly stand by each other through thick and thin…..they were looking for a magical reality that only exists in imagination.
Before we go further, let me make a statement: I am not against marriage, nor do I resent marriage in any way. Actually, just the reverse……I’m highly anticipating a great life and family when my time comes.
however, because of the exposure and experience I have, I’m doing the soul work now to make sure I don’t get married believing a lie and that I’m prepared to the best of my ability for the storms that will come to test the future union between myself and my groom.
Singleness a blessing
Let me also state that there’s nothing wrong with being single. We call marriage a big blessing, but so is singleness! It’s a time to find yourself, discover your passions, purpose and talents. There’s nothing wrong with a 35-year old single lady, as much as there is not anything wrong with a 25-year-old wife who has a child on the way!
We need to understand that marriage, singleness, or the transition from one to another are all seasons of our life. One prepares us for the other, and sometimes, we may have to go through both a time or two before we finally get to where God is taking us.
To believe that marriage is a fairy-tale isn’t marriage, it’s a mirage. To believe singleness is a curse that must be escaped, is also a mirage. We can celebrate both, and its only when we can finally celebrate both, each as we experience them that we can finally say we have been prepared for the “good thing” God intends to bless us with.
Have a Merry Christmas and Season’s Greetings!
Elizabeth is a student of Applied Behaviour Analysis and Special Education, a proud public speaker at Toastmasters International and budding entrepreneur. In my free time, she loves reading, cycling, crocheting and most recently, mastering cuisine in the kitchen. Her life’s ambition is to own an international non-profit ministry focusing on eliminating poverty in Africa and Asia as well as ministering mental and emotional healing.