The author will offer three basic virtues that would help any marriage relationship last a lifetime. This is in connection to the Seventh-Day Adventist Church World Covid-19 Marriage and Family Day of Prayer.
The influence of home life affects the community, the country, and the world at large. Unfortunately, not all families this time served the purpose of producing responsible individuals who can be builders of society. Some are dysfunctional that usually resulted in irresponsible persons in the community. Some of these young ones even become hoodlums of the society bringing challenges to its leaders. Hence, homebuilders are admonished to build a family that is capable of producing people who become responsible members of society.
Several factors can contribute to how parents build a relationship in the family. Some of these are nationality, cultural background, faith, beliefs, etc. Each of the factors mentioned here can bring different styles and practices that can be used in building a family and keeping it. In the Philippines, referring to the majority of its population, the extended family becomes usual. This practice can be seen as a disadvantage but this can also be seen as a strength. Strength in a way that families are intact and can maintain the right relationship, though not all the time.
While media and the internet open the barrier to different cultures. Anyone who has access to it can be influenced by how other countries look at family relationships. The laws on separation and annulment make marriage and family relationships vulnerable to break up. Divorce becomes rampant and this makes family ties as easy to break as other business transactions. It is sad how movies portrayed shallow marriage commitments. The television shows display that if the marriage will not work for a few months and years they can just file for annulment or divorce. Some cultural practices encourage trial and error which give 5 years for couples to live together and see if it works. If the five years show success then they can proceed to marriage otherwise they can break up peacefully.
Additionally, social media highlights marriage successes based on standards that are unrealistic to all. It overemphasized that in order to have a successful marriage you should have all of these material things in your home, resources as plenty as this, beauty and body like that, and more. But are these the only the bases of a successful marriage? How are we going to define successful families?
In the Bible, marriage is a Holy union. It is God’s illustration of the union between the church and God. Bible also shows the ideals of a marriage relationship. It has guidelines that can help us build a family that would make our community happy and successful.
Originally, God saw that it was not good for man to be alone (Gen.2:18). So He made Eve for Adam. The primary guideline is in Genesis 2:24, “Therefore shall a man leave his father and his mother, and shall join to his wife: and they shall be one flesh.”In Mark 10:8 this is affirmed that after the sacred matrimony the “two shall be one flesh: so then they are no more two, but one flesh”. After the wedding, the new couple should really have a place where they can stay together as new husbands and wives. There are many adjustments to manage right after the wedding. Maybe both of you are not used to have someone to share with you in a bed, a blanket, or in a pillow. And if you haven’t had the chance to observe your partner sleep before your wedding, then there is a good chance that you don’t know his/her habits when sleeping. Maybe your partner snores, drools, or loves to rest a leg with you badly. And maybe in the morning he/she has bad breath or is farting loudly. These are just a few things you will be learning to accept as you are one now. Your routine being single will be shared with your other self now. That made adjustments a challenge. Spending a year together without a child can help you enjoy each other’s company and build a habit and a hobby together.
(There are much bigger adjustments if you are living with other families with you like in-laws and siblings)
With these new things that you need to embrace after marriage here are few tips that would help you.
- Faith. The verse in Amos 3:3, “can two walk together, except they be agreed?” clearly encouraged to have one faith as a new family. Faith here refers to the religion or the way of worship. Faith in the family is important because you allow a very reliable third party in your relationship that will be with your family in all areas of life. Faith in God can make a marriage relationship happy. Going to church together, having a worship time in the morning, and in the evening makes all things to be working out in the relationship. Matthew 6:33 says, “seek ye first the kingdom of God and His righteousness and all these things shall be added unto you”. Happy family life can be added by God to you if you seek His will first. Pray together always.
- Trust. A relationship without trust is like a plant without roots. It can die if there are no remedies to help it grow again. Trust is essential because you don’t have all the time in the world to guard your partner. Trusting means you don’t know each other’s passwords in social media and you don’t check each other’s phone often. You cannot have a stable relationship if the following are present: jealousy, selfishness, pride, anger, and disrespect. Trust that you would consider each other before making a decision. You should completely trust each other.
- Love. 1 Peter 4:8 says, “Above all, love each other deeply because love covers over a multitude of sins.” The Bible text is enough. When you love your partner, acceptance is real and tolerance is high. In marriage, strive not to change each other but learn to appreciate your differences and be optimistic about your weaknesses. Breaking up should not be part to solve any problems at home. Like many other problems, clear communication can lead to an unimagined solution.
In the first months and years of marriage, husbands and wives are living like in a fantasy. They seem to have a pedestal. But as the years have gone by, especially when children are there to be trained and molded, they will start to see the realities of life. In these times, adjustments become more and the husband and wife must agree as to how they would run the household smoothly. They just need to keep FTL works.
In general, FTL works as the pillars of having a strong family relationship. The main thing that would make marriage successful is God. At the personal level, each husband and wife should have a right relationship with God, because it is only through Him that they can truly manifest love. Love that will make a difference in their family life. Love that will conquer obstacles and challenges in life. Love that will be able to endure whatever life may bring. Love that will stand through the test of time. Love that will make them grow together. Love that will lead them all to heaven. Let us then be the family that would make the world a better place to live with.
Good day and Happy Sabbath everyone.
In my next write-ups on the matters about the family, I will consider specific things in marriage that would affect the relationship in the family. You may suggest and add more if you like…