Tuesday, February 9, 2010

Why do so many divorce?

Why do so many divorce?

As some one who has experienced divorce I’m certainly least qualified to exhort on marriage but my father always told me it’s not a shame to make a mistake but it is a shame to repeat a mistake.

The most common theme I hear when I turn on my car radio is the pain of broken hearts. Love gone wrong. Alcoholism, addictions, adultery…and another family left in tatters. One becomes the loneliest number, even lonelier than two. The tears flow, children suffer, friends walk away. The blissful beginning of a fairy tale marriage succumbs to a stark reality. Communication ceases. Hearts grow cold and love dies a slow and painful death. Dissatisfaction permeates. Anxiety seeps through the cracks. And finally the tentacles of despair squeeze the last life from a suffocating heart. The white flag waves and the towel is throne into the ring. Surrender is now made so easy by no-fault divorce. Couples no longer fight for their marriages, instead, they look for greener grass somewhere else. Erma Bombeck once wrote a book : "The Grass is Always Greener Over the Septic Tank."

Billy Joel sings a song called "Honesty": "Honesty is such a lonely word. Everyone is so untrue. Honesty is hardly ever heard. And mostly what I need from you."

Why are 50% of marriages in America ending in divorce?

A lot of men are disillusioned with love. They harbor a deep anger toward women. See Keith Olbermann on MSNBC for an example of a man eaten away by bitterness toward women.

When Bill Clinton was philandering on his wife the word out on the street was, "That’s just what men do. All men are that way." So many women have been hurt by the lack of honesty from men that they've simply categorized all men as heartless, adulterous, loveless thugs.

If you watch the airwaves you would think that infidelity in marriage is now the norm: Tiger Woods infidelity caused his financial empire to collapse. John Edwards ambitions to be president of the United States were wiped out when he fathered a child to another woman. Mark Sanford, the Governor of South Carolina, referred to his mistress as his "soul mate" and admitted to having multiple affairs while married to his wife, Jenny.

If you asked any of these men, "What in the world were you thinking?" The answer would be that they were not thinking. They were so engulfed in the feelings of euphoria that come with forbidden love that they had ceased thinking. They were so blinded they couldn't even perceive how their actions would hurt their wives, crush the hearts of their children and forever altar their lives.

In 1931 Gustav and Wanda Lutzer were married in a Lutheran Church in Canada. Their fifth child has pastored the Moody Church in Chicago for 30 years.

In an age when ½ of all marriages are a sprint, the Lutzers turned their marriage into a marathon. They recently celebrated their 77th wedding anniversary. Wanda spoke for the couple because she is much younger than Gustav. She is only 100 years old. He was 104 years old. When asked what it was like to be so old they said, "Well, we don't have any peer pressure." When asked about the secret to such a long marriage Wanda said, "The Lord brought us together and devotions and prayers kept us together." Erwin Lutzer, the son of Gustav and Wanda says that marriage is like a phone call in the middle of the night. "You get a ring and then you wake up." Another man said "every marriage has three rings: engagement ring, wedding ring and suffering."

Marriages don’t last because we don’t keep our vows. We stand before a preacher and we makes vows to each other and to God and then we think nothing of it when we break those vows. Ecclesiastes 5:4 “When you make a vow to God, do not delay in fulfilling it. He has no pleasure in fools; fulfill your vow.”

The Lutzers stayed together for 77 years because they walked into the marriage, shut the door, locked themselves in and threw away the key. They had something that is lacking in a lot of marriages today: COMMITMENT. I read a quote recently, “We never considered divorce, murder maybe, but not divorce.” There is biblical grounds for dissolving a marriage but God expects us to keep our vows. Mal. 2:16 "I hate divorce," says the LORD God of Israel”

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