Wednesday, 25 August 2010

The Highest Priority

Apparently the American Association of Marriage and Family Therapists addressed the question, “Why do long-term marriages end?” Without oversimplifying their answer it boiled down to the following:
• Divorce does not carry near the stigma it used to.
• We are living longer, healthier lives.
• We may out-grow our partners psychologically.

While I believe there are other factors, I can’t disagree with the AAMFT’s theory. Sadly enough it would seem that our behaviors are shaped by culturally accepted norms. And so much for “until death do us part – as a sixty year old single male who can put two sentences together and not drool, you’re now a hot commodity”. I love the third reason which basically says when I married you I was a caterpillar but I have emerged into this beautiful butterfly and you my dear spouse are still a caterpillar.

The AAMFT then offered three suggestions that might enable a couple to grow together:
1. Continue your courtship after you are married.
2. Share goals that keep you looking forward to new things.
3. Marriage should take the highest priority.

Again, I think this is a very good list. However what IF God were your highest priority and His Word was the ultimate authority? Divorce would not be tolerable. We would be ecstatic to live an additional twenty years with the husband/wife that we adore, particularly if we are both in better physical and mental health. Since husbands would love their wives as much as they love themselves, continued courtship would come naturally. And because wives would respect (reverence, notice, regard, honor, prefer, venerate, and esteem) their husbands he would be nuts (that’s a psychological term) to ever think of leaving her.

Love must become a verb and we must each be willing to step out of that claustrophobic kingdom of me and “in humility consider others better than ourselves.” (Philippians 2:3)

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