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northwoodsbear

What is your relationship founded on? Will it last?


Most people approach marriage and relationships looking for love. You wouldn't marry someone you didn't love. Romance and love are at the heart of our conception of marriage. We dream about finding love. We tell stories about it. Entire industries are devoted to producing movies or books about love.


And you know what? It doesn't work.


Around 44% of all marriages will fail. And if you add a second wife the likelihood one or both leaves skyrockets to 68% (average) and even as high as 90% (typical).


That is failure. Big time. It is no coincidence that we have the 7 year itch. Romance (or erotic love) is transient. It naturally fades with time. This makes it a shaky foundation that makes marriage unstable.


Don't get me wrong, I'm not saying you can't or shouldn't find someone you love to marry. Do that. And also put effort into cultivating and maintaining erotic love within you relationship. But it is not a good foundation, all the more so in polygamy where there is so much more potential for drama, hurt, and loss.


So what is a good foundation?


Many Christians counter this situation saying we need to marry a Christian or have Christ centered marriages. But is that really working either? The divorce rate among Christian's is not much different. In practice this concept often results in people using Christ or religion as an excuse for rebellion, abandonment, or upsetting the Godly order in marriage.


But there is a solution and a better foundation for marriage: Christ-like love.


The Christian New Testament talks a lot about love and even commands men and women to love their spouses. But it doesn't mean love like we mean love. The New Testament scriptures were originally written in Ancient Greek, which has several different words for love. When we think love in relationship we think romantic love. But the word for that in Greek, eros, is not found even once in the New Testament. But what it does talk a lot about is agape love. 


Agape love is the love Christ modeled for us. This is other centered, self-sacrificial, benevolent, forgiving, unconditional love. This love is an action, not a feeling. It is the opposite of selfishness and jealousy. This is the love that can bind us all together stronger than strong. When wives love this love for each other it subsumes and overcomes the conflicts. When husbands love this for their wives it overcomes the hurts, convicts and leads by its example.


"This is My commandment, that you love one another, just as I have loved you. Greater love has no one than this, that one lay down his life for his friends. You are My friends if you do what I command you. No longer do I call you slaves, for the slave does not know what his master is doing; but I have called you friends, for all things that I have heard from My Father I have made known to you. You did not choose Me but I chose you, and appointed you that you would go and bear fruit, and that your fruit would remain, so that whatever you ask of the Father in My name He may give to you. This I command you, that you love one another." - John 15:12-17


But how do we achieve this love?


Love is the prime command in Christianity. It is the core principle and thing which must characterize our Christian walk. But to get there, we first must be rightly ordered with God.


"Then Jesus said to His disciples, “If anyone wishes to come after Me, he must deny himself, and take up his cross and follow Me. “For whoever wishes to save his life will lose it; but whoever loses his life for My sake will find it." - Matthew 16:24-25


Being a Christian isn't about what God can do for us or about how it will make our life better, it is about completely submitting ourselves to Christ; for Him to use us as we walk in His commandments. To do that we must surrender our will our selfishness our desire to control our own destiny.


When men and women in marriage have died to self in that way and given up their will to Christ, their life will become characterized by selflessness. When they love Christ they will sacrificially love each other; and love covers a multitude of sins. 


The Fruit


When a man has died to self, he lives a godly example for his wives to follow as he follows Christ.


When a wife has died to herself, she no longer lives selfishly but channels her submission to Christ through her husband as she follows him in his journey for Christ.


When men and women in marriage do this they will come to live their lives according to Godly order. God has established a hierarchy of authority in creation: God -> Christ -> man -> woman -> children (1 Cor 11, Eph 5&6). In scripture, when a woman leaves her family and marries her man she passes from under her fathers authority to her husbands. When she lives under the authority and direction of her husband, she is living in sync with the created order. 


This makes everything easier. No longer is she there just because she wants to be, or because she's feeling feelings of love. She is there because it is her right place in the world as she follows her leader. When divorce is no longer an option, everyone has the incentive to make it work and to stick it out when times get tough. Divorce is the easy out. Couples who stick together through tough times build stronger, happier marriages.


Contrast this with the normal way of marriage: the equal partnership. Equality is an impossibility because when two disagree one must prevail. And that means the marriage set up for a constant struggle for supremacy. And when you throw multiple wives into the mix this situation goes from contentious to impossible.


But when wives follow their husband in love as he follows Christ you get a beautiful oneness that shines forth in their lives with a joy beyond measure. And this oneness of heart, mind, and purpose is how you get lifelong marriage. 


"And if one can overpower him who is alone, two can resist him. A cord of three strands is not quickly torn apart." - Ecclesiastes 4:12

God Bless,


NorthWoodsBear



KelsonFamily
We have one opportunity to live this life and I’m hoping that we’re all striving to live it for the best, and as stress and drama free as possible. It is also my hope that we are not dismissing the obligation to consider our Heavenly Father and the wonderful redemption he offers through Christ our Lord and Savior. Let us remember now the creator in the days of our youth, our youthful mature age. Learning to live life in a fulfilling and satisfying way is a progression. The first step in learning to achieve these objectives is to struggle through family upbringing. Most of us had parents and siblings who tested our patience but by whom we leant well-adjusted and morally correct behavior; I say most of us. It is also hoped that we learnt to understand ourselves in preparation for adult years. Who am I goes way past sibling order and family name. It wasn’t very long before, by the explosion of hormones and social pressure, we entered into another phase of life learning when we took on relationships of a more intense and deeply personal sort. Hopefully, our upbringing to a reasonable level of maturity enabled us to succeed in them. I’d love to say success in marriage was the case for most of us but the divorce rates confirm that for whatever reasons, failure in these areas designed to bring the most joy and fulfilment is pandemic and we would fail dismally if we wanted to data base all the reasons why. One thing is for sure; failure told us something about ourselves and we should have taken that on board. Blaming others exclusively for failure is deflection and not a sign of the maturity we ought to have found as we grew. So we who love polygyny come from either of these groups, for the most part. We come from those who enjoy reasonable success in monogamy or from a broken or a series of broken monogamous experiences. Yet it has to be said that whatever our relationship background, not many of us truly know ourselves and are thus not strong enough to make such monumental changes that are necessary to live and love polygamously. It is my contention that many folks fail because they don’t who they really are. These will cringe at the heat of committed poly relationships because it will manifest some terrible inner being hitherto unknown. Polygamy will cut open and expose any deep flaws in me quicker than a hot knife through butter. It would seem reasonable that those enjoying some success in monogamous marriages are better placed to enter polygamous ones but this might not be the case. Often monogamous people sweep things under the carpet or just accept stuff between themselves which really isn’t acceptable. This doesn’t help us face who we are and grow. Again, be warned, polygamy will expose these flaws either personal or corporate. If a monogamous marriage is weak then polygamy could well destroy it. If the individuals in monogamy are weak then polygamy could break down that individual to the detriment of the other lives associated with it. Those who consider polygyny from a background of broken relationships may be far worse placed to consider this marriage choice. Failure but especially repeated failure is a red flag waving large and ominously and must not ignored. Somehow the one failing repeatedly is not learning something about relationships and especially about themselves. To even consider bringing a repeat failureee into any family is a step in the wrong direction. So who am I? Am I ready to face the heat of polygamous marriage? Marriage should be a choice, not a romantic fling. Marriage is about enduring through tough times, not fleeing at the first hurdle. Marriage is about so many things that are unpleasant in self-correction and who can truly endure that? Polygynous marriage can be far more searching and demanding; it’s a three way heat and asbestos panties don’t provide sufficient protection. Polygamy is not for those who are afraid of self-examination and who avoid any course of self-betterment. Jumping from one relationship to another because it “didn’t work out” is avoiding the mirror examination and is as widespread in polygamy circles as monogamous ones. Polygyny is not a revolving door; not the means for weak men to feed on as many women as can be consumed. Polygyny is not for women who want a good man but make demands about how it will function. Polygyny is not a formalized facilitator of fornication; if you just want sex with benefits then that makes polygyny prostitution. Polygyny is marriage for those who are strong enough to love the others in it for their betterment and fulfilment and for our own mature growth. Who am I? I’d better know real good before polygyny, because we might not like what polygyny will expose. I write from sad experience. Brian of the Kelson Family
KelsonFamily Jan 4 '17 · Comments: 2 · Tags: polygyny, failure, marriage, self, love
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