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How to Stay Married (for men)

  • September 27th, 2009 by Pastor Darryl Curtis   |  0 Comments

            In this generation, the foundation of marriage is the wedding. This is true because a wedding gives a woman the maximum chance to get the attention of her relatives and peers. She is the queen for the day, people buy her presents, people tell her how beautiful she is because she gets to wear the beautiful white dress while all of her friends have to wear the ugly bridesmaids’ dresses, and so on. It is a major faux pas to come to the wedding looking better than the bride, because the bride is the focal point of the wedding day.

            This fact tells us that women need attention. There is no question about it. I have watched a great deal of women’s television since my wife has been laid up, and I can tell you that if you could develop and market a product that could guarantee women that using your product would get them more attention, you would become rich beyond your wildest dreams. Women want to be noticed; they want to be flattered, they want to be desired, they want men to pay attention to them.

            This knowledge potentially makes staying married easy for a man to do. All he has to do is find a normal woman and pay attention to her. It is important that she be normal, because it is impossible to pay enough attention to a warped woman. A warped woman will want more attention regardless of how many people are already paying attention to her, but a normal woman will be satisfied if she is her husband’s center of attention. Genesis 2:24 tells us:
Therefore a man shall leave his father and mother and be joined to his wife, and they shall become one flesh.
Women need the “one flesh” part. Women need the “one flesh” part. Let me say it again. Women need the “one flesh” part. They need to be a part of their man. Being a part of a man is like being his stomach. If a man doesn’t pay the proper attention to it, it will start to hurt him after a little while.

            Now, it is also true that women need men to work to provide for them. The prehistoric stereotype is that men left the cave every morning to hunt for meat, while women stayed at home, took care of the children, and gathered berries. The women didn’t need men standing there every minute looking at them. However, it may be that God created night (and sex) so that men would come home from hunting and pay attention to their women. Women don’t need men’s attention all of the time in the same way that men don’t have to eat all of the time, but they do need men’s attention for some period of time during the day, just like men have to have breakfast, lunch and dinner.

            Women need the attention of a man. It doesn’t matter how many other things you give women, because, in the final analysis, the other things do not satisfy their need for attention. A new car is cool, but it doesn’t pay attention to her. A big bank account is cool, but it doesn’t pay attention to her. An appreciating portfolio is cool, but it doesn’t pay attention to her.

            Let me tell you about the dog that we have around the house. My wife was the youngest of her siblings, and when her older brother and sister got too big to pay enough attention to her, she got a dog to pay attention to her. When my wife left home to go to college, she found out that couldn’t have a dog in the dorm. Since there were no children left at home to pay attention to my mother-in-law, my mother-in-law kept the dog. She’s a woman, and she needed someone to pay attention to her.

            When I married my wife at the beginning of her sophomore year and we moved out of the dorm, my wife tried to get her dog back from my mother-in-law. My mother-in-law wouldn’t give her the dog. Why? Because my wife had a husband to pay attention to her, and my mother-in-law only had the dog to pay attention to her. Now, my wife wanted the dog, and not “a” dog, but this particular dog. She told me she wanted the dog, she went home to get the dog, but she came back without the dog because my mother-in-law wouldn’t give her the dog. So, being a good husband, I bought her a dog. Thirty-seven years later, my wife and I still have a dog. (Not that same dog, of course.)

            I often say that my wife married me to get a dog. She married me so that we could move off campus because she couldn’t have her dog on campus. Women marry men because the men have something that they want, just like men buy big screen televisions because of some feature on it that they want. But how long would you keep that television if it stopped working, or didn’t work when you wanted to watch a program? You might try to get it fixed once or twice, but eventually, if it doesn’t start working, you will take it back to be replaced. That’s the same amount of time that a wife will be faithful to a husband that doesn’t give her the attention that she needs.

            No marriage is doomed to failure unless the people involved are mentally ill. But marriage is like a computer program. Marriage doesn’t work the way that you want it to; marriage works the way that it is designed. The design of marriage is that the husband and wife pay daily, personal, physical attention to one another, (the “one flesh” part) and women need that.

            If a man wants to focus his entire existence on making money, that’s fine. He just shouldn’t get married until he is ready to change his primary focus from making money to meeting his obligation to his wife and children, including the obligation to give his wife attention. If the way that a man chooses to make money interferes with his ability to give his wife and children the proper attention, than he either should not have married or he should change his choice of career to one that both allows him to take care of his family obligations and his career. One of the most destructive things that a man can do to his marriage is to decide, in his own mind, that that which he does to make money is more important than his obligation to be one with his wife on a daily basis. If a man makes this decision, then his marriage is on borrowed time. He’ll find that, in the end, his money without his attention doesn’t count to his wife, because she can still get his money through a divorce attorney.

            In the fairy tales, the prince marries the princess and “they live happily ever after”. What does that mean? To a woman, that means that the prince pays attention to the princess for the rest of her life. The prince always finds the princess beautiful, she can always get his attention when she wants it, he will get her anything that she needs, and he will always love her. That’s not real life, but it’s pretty close, and real life marriages fail when men fail to pay the needed attention to their women. Marriages fail when women are unfaithful to their men, but women will be unhappy and thus tempted to be unfaithful when their men do not pay attention to them, because women need attention, like men need food. You can’t change these facts, because this is the way that marriage is designed. Ephesians 5:25 tells us:
Husbands, love your wives, just as Christ also loved the church and gave Himself for her.

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