The Lord God said, “It is not good for the man to be alone. I will make a helper who is just right for him.” Genesis 2:18. God formed a woman out of the man’s own body, so that she can be “just right for him.” Anyone who reads the following chapters will see that even the woman God Himself picked for Adam was lured into sin. How much more easily we fall short of God’s ideal for marriage in our own lives.
The increasing number of divorces among our Indian Christian community is disturbing and alarming. The reasons for marital separation and divorce are many. The common areas of contention seem to be finances, pertinent personal history, extra-marital friendships/relationships, character incompatibility and parental/ family expectations.
What are the root causes that result in a failed marriage? A writer once said, “It is not the marriage that fails; it is people that fail. All that marriage does is show people up.” Marriage is an institution designed by God Himself. Whatever He has created is good. Once sin had entered the world through that first married couple, humanity has had to grapple with issues that directly target marriage.
Since marriage is between two individuals, we can say that it is the individual that must work through their personal issues before entering into a marriage. Here is where counseling should begin. How can we best prepare ourselves to be the “right person” before we look for the “right person”?
1 Timothy 3: 16, 17 say, “All scripture is inspired by God and is useful to teach us what is true and to make us realize what is wrong in our lives. It corrects us when we are wrong and teaches us to do what is right. God uses it to prepare and equip his people to do every good work.” Friends, did you hear the last part of that scripture? God’s holy Word should be applied in preparing our hearts and minds for the good work of “marriage” which He instituted.
Within the church body today, there are those who have been trained in counseling within the parameters of Biblical guidelines. However, it is not only the responsibility of Christian therapists and counselors to provide instruction and examples of godly marriage. Let the church- the body of Christ- step up to the need of the present.
There are older more experienced brothers and sisters in our church body that must teach and train the younger men and women on how to conduct themselves in a marriage relationship. This training and modeling should have taken place long before even considering marriage. This teaching and training is Biblically encouraged (Titus 2). It is a blessing to observe and learn from couples that have been joyfully married for ten, twenty, forty, sixty years or more. Scripture exhorts the more mature believers to come along side of us to advice us and counsel us as we prepare for our marriage. Proverbs 15:22 says, “Plans go wrong for lack of advice; many advisors bring success.” May God guide us in this crucial decision of life.
*All scripture quotes taken from the New Living Translation Bible