Wednesday, 13 June 2012

The Gray Divorce Revolution

I’m not sure what troubles me more, the fact that I am old enough to get AARP Magazine or the articles that sometimes appear.  In the current issue one of the featured headlines is “Divorce After 50”.  The report states that the divorce rate for those over 50 has doubled since 1990.  The reasons given are (1) longer lives mean more years with an incompatible spouse, (2) no kids to use as a reason to stay together, (3) less stigma about splitting, (4) more women working, some out-earning their spouses, (5) and the remarriage failure rate jumps to 60 percent.

If you had difficulty finding anything positive in the paragraph above, you will find even less encouragement if you read the entire article.  Financial pressures, living arrangements, and giving and receiving care head the list of some of the fall-out resulting from a divorce in later life.

So what is my point in bringing you this cheery news?:  It’s just this, don’t wait to seek help.  In many cases if while in their 30’s and 40’s the couple had done everything in their power to make their marriage work they wouldn’t be faced with the dilemma of divorce.

One of the major reasons marriage counseling has such a dismal success rate is because couples wait until the garbage they are lugging around with them is so heavy that  Arnold Schwarzenegger couldn’t lift it. This was probably a bad analogy considering his recent divorce.  Once the amount of acrimony and hurt has reached gigantic proportions it is difficult to undue all the damage.  Either one or both of the parties is unable or unwilling to forgive the other.

Perhaps the saddest statistic of all is the one that claims the death of Christian marriages happening at the same rate as in the secular community.  Since marriage is for the express purposes of glorifying God this is totally unacceptable.  “Wait a minute”, you say, ”Since when did glorifying God become the primary purpose of marriage?”  My answer is in the Garden and you saw how well that worked.  God is determined to give us free will, He is willing to let us make mistake after mistake.  But 1Corinthians 10:31 tells us that whatever we do it is to be for the glory of God.  Ephesians 5 tells us that we are to be imitators of God, we are to live a life of love, and the marriage relationship should mirror the image of Christ to His bride, the church.

If your marriage is in trouble start with a new vision, i.e. that whatever you do, say, think or don’t do as it pertains to your marriage will bring glory to God.

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