Writer’s Name: Charlotte Templeman
Title: “For better, worse or DIVORCE!”
“The church was filled as she walked down the aisle in her white wedding gown. Her father walked proudly beside her as he led her to her future. She was excited as she got closer to the man she would vow to spend the rest of her life with. Unfortunately within three years of the marriage the once happy couple would be visiting a lawyer to file for divorce.”
Although the above scenario is fiction it is hundreds of married couples’ reality. Divorce, the last straw, the final walk of marriage. In today’s society the divorce rate continues to rise. We see daily on shows such as Entertainment Tonight and Extra where celebrities are marrying one day and literally divorcing the next. It’s as if there is no regard or respect for the institution of marriage. What is the reason for this? There are many factors that contribute to the divorce rate. Some are infidelity, finances, lack of communication, unemployment and expectations of your partner. Often times couples find themselves experiencing one or more of these issues and at some point it becomes too much to bear. For some the only way out is divorce.
When some people date they look at their level of commitment to the relationship differently than they would if they were married. Some feel because they do not have that legal piece of paper, if they cheat, do not work, or contribute financially, that it is acceptable. A person may accept that behavior but are not pleased with it. Although some may see these traits as a problem, they may still choose to marry thinking things will change. Unfortunately situations like this usually end in divorce because once married the expectations change for what your partner should be doing. The reality is things usually do not change and what you had before marriage you will have during marriage. Getting to know your partner as much as possible can alleviate some of the problems that one faces. Once married both parties expect that the wife and husband have certain responsibilities to the marriage. It is no longer a girlfriend/boyfriend relationship but now it is a Husband/Wife relationship. If one or both cannot handle the responsibilities of being husband or wife, they think divorce is the only option.
During the time when my parents and their friends were marrying, for better or worse meant just that. When problems would arise they would endure them together and work to make it better. They understood that divorce was not an option but their commitment to one another and making it work was. Marriage meant something to them and it was taken seriously. So often today people get married for various reasons, some of which have nothing to do with love. People may get married for financial security, thinking they are in love, not wanting to lose the person or for the “idea of marriage.” The idea of marriage, especially for some women is being able to wear the gown, riding in the limousine, the elaborate reception and feeling like Cinderella. Most little girls dream of this day and long for it to come at any expense. That may mean marrying someone they really do not know just to be able to say “I’m married and this is my husband.”
The covenant of marriage is not one to be entered into lightly. It is a union. Some people think that union is just between man and woman, but it is not. The union is between God, man and woman. When two people stand at the altar in front of family and friends to confess their love to one another, they are also confessing their love to God. The vow of marriage is made to Him first, then the spouse. Marriage at that time is a spiritual bond that is ordained by God. If couples truly believe that He is the center of their marriage, they understand that when problems arise, it is He they go to for guidance and not family and friends. Taking your problems to God will not only strengthen the bond between the two but it will also strengthen their personal relationship with God.
Marriage is work. Just as we invest time in our jobs, our homes, our cars and other material things, we have to invest just as much time in making marriage work. When a person’s car breaks down they do not take it to the junk yard, instead they try to get it fixed. If something breaks in the home such as the water heater, a washer or dryer, the repair man is called to fix it. If we have problems on our job, we do not quit but instead we go to our boss to relay our concerns and hope for a resolution. Marriage is no different. When problems arise the first recourse should not be divorce. It should be praying, counseling and speaking to our partner about repairing what is broken. Divorce does not have to be an option. If true love is the heart of the relationship then there is hope for longevity in the marriage. Marriage is one of the most beautiful gifts given to us by God and it is and can be the best investment one will make in their life.