Tuesday, 19 February 2013

God's Purpose or Your Purpose


So whether you eat or drink or whatever you do, do it all for the glory of God.

1Corinthians 10:31

An article in the Wall Street Journal caught my attention.  The title of the article was “The Gray Divorces”.  It went on to describe a cultural shift in how Americans view marriage.  The article suggested that prior to WWII (that would be World War II) there was an “institutional phase”.  That phrase alone should have scared off most.  Marriage back then, according to Ms. Thomas, was largely seen as an economic union. (How thrilling)  The 50’s and 60’s were supposedly the “companionate phase” in which a successful marriage was defined by the degree to which each spouse could fulfill his or her role.  In the 70’s the “individualized phase” kicked in, featuring an emphasis on the satisfaction of personal needs. This shift has given rise to those over age 50 divorcing at a rate double what it was two decades ago.  It is all about me, my needs, my wants, my desires and my expectations.

Professor Brown, author of the “Gray Marriage Paper” cites statistics of a successful re-marriage which should certainly throw up a huge red flag. In those in the 50 to 64 age bracket they are twice as likely to divorce again.  For those over age 65 the risk quadruples.

Here is the punch line of the article.  The ex-wife, who was cited in this article, found her current boyfriend on line and one of the characteristics that mattered to her most was that he, the divorced boyfriend was “very religious – one of the things lacking in my former husband.”

You have to be kidding. 

The verse for today says, “whatever you do, do it all for the glory of God.”  In Greek that phrase means “whatever you do” which would include marrying someone, particularly when you consider God invented marriage.

I must admit I don’t know one couple who stood at the altar and said, “I take this man/woman to be my husband/wife so as to bring glory to God.”  But also must say I do not know of one couple who has tried as best as humanly possible to conduct themselves in a way that would bring honor to God that has not experienced a marriage of unity, understanding and love.

 
I wonder what marriage could be like if in the decade beginning in 2015 couples entered the “biblical phase” in which the husband loved his wife as much as he loved himself and the wife revered and respected her husband.  In addition to being other centered, they prayed together as husband and wife; their parenting focused on character development; and their home was filled with grace, peace and love.  Nah, that would never work.

 

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