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Marriage is Honorable in All

In a group counseling session, a woman spent a great deal of time beating herself up for getting pregnant outside of wedlock twice and putting the two children up for adoption. She knew that she did not have the ability to provide for the children that she brought into the world. She felt that she was a bad person for not actually raising her own children until she talked to a counselor that informed her that to put her children up for adoption was actually heroic. Rather than raising them in poverty without a nuclear family structure, she had given her children an intact, loving, two parent family, a mother and a father with the means and commitment to care for them emotionally as well as financially. Biology does not trump circumstances, and, without question, a child is better served by an intact two-parent family environment than by a single mother, biology notwithstanding.

A woman that had actually raised her child as single mother echoed the sentiments of the counselor in the meeting. She said, “I was fifteen when I became pregnant, twenty-one years ago. While I am proud of myself for not having had an abortion, I now realize that I did not do the best thing for my child. After a brief, one year marriage to my child’s biological father, I ended up raising my son on my own with no financial or emotional support whatsoever from my son’s father. He was an alcoholic who lived just five miles from us, but he wouldn’t take part in my son’s life. Although I made a very unwise choice of a father for my son, I was proud that I was able to provide for him and to do it all on my own.

Well, I now know otherwise. At age fifteen, my son began experimenting with drugs, and I tried very hard to fix him with therapy, discipline, love, and structure. At age seventeen, he graduated from high school, but, between fifteen and seventeen, I endured many incidents of bad behavior from him. Finally, at age eighteen, he completely rebelled. He is now a full fledged drug addict, and most recently, he has been diagnosed with a mental disorder. I’m not sure if the mental disorder was brought on by the drug use, or if it existed all along, but I now realize that if my son had had two parents who were settled in their lives and roles rather than a single parent that was so busy trying to make ends meet and to provide and survive by herself, any mental disorder that may have existed in him would probably have been discovered sooner and could have been more successfully treated. I also know in my heart that my son was always lacking in the male father-bonding and teaching that comes only from a good relationship with a father. There was no uncle, there was no grandfather in his life. My son was raised by a woman, and it shows in his expectations and behavior. I’m now trying my best to be supportive in this unfortunate situation, and get him the help that he needs. I’m also now very sorry that I did not have the selfless grace to give my baby to a loving couple who could have better provided by the roles that they had established and the modeling that they could have given. I proved to everyone that, as a teenage mom, I could still graduate from college and make a lot of money. I was not able to prove, however, that a woman can successfully raise a man child without a father.

Hebrews 13:4 teaches us:
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Marriage is honorable among all, and the bed undefiled; but fornicators and adulterers God will judge.

God has not produced gender roles and the codified the requirement for a child to have two married parents providing love and discipline in the Scripture just to be a cosmic killjoy. God does not tell us to wait until we are married to have sex just because He likes to see single people sexually frustrated. God has a plan, and His Word is the planning tool that we need to develop our lives in the way that will bring us the most satisfaction.

Sex, although enjoyable, is intended by God to be a part of greater relationship than a one-night stand or a shack-up situation in which there is no commitment. The children that you will produce by your sexual activity need you to be as intelligent as birds that create a nest before they lay eggs. God ordains marriage because the raising of children requires planning, preparation and sacrifice, and, most importantly, commitment. Once the child is conceived, it is too late for a man to have second thoughts; it is time to step up to the plate and do the job. Once the child is conceived, it is too late for a woman to realize that she hasn’t done everything that she wanted to do before she became a wife and a mother; it is time to step up to the plate and do the job. Sex makes babies; birth control is nothing more than a trap to makes you feel secure that your sexual activity will have no consequences although you are actually only reducing your exposure to the consequences slightly. Using birth control is like having an umbrella in a rainstorm. The umbrella is better than nothing, and may keep the water out of your eyes, but it will not keep you from getting wet.

It may seem unrealistic, in this day and age, to be a proponent of sexual abstinence until marriage, however, in order to change the cycle of academic deficit for our children, it is important that we do so. We need to, as the old folks used to say, go back to the old landmark. Our future children need us to turn back the clock, and return to Biblical morality.

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