We began a 3 week series this week called "Relationships by Design" that is more focused on marriage than dating. Why would we do this? Well as I was praying about what type of series do around the month of love I thought that we should take a look at what a biblical marriage should look like. If we understand what the future should look like from a biblical basis, then it should help guide our steps and decisions today that will lead to that. The sad truth is that 1 in 3 marriages end in divorce, and it is my desire that none of the students, or anyone for that matter, becomes a part of that statistic.
I began by sharing 3 of my favorite quotes that I have heard on relationships and marriage:
-"Pick a date that will make a good mate"- this is from my youth pastor
-"When you date someone one of two things are going to happen, you are either going to break up with them or marry them"- advice given to me from my sister when I was younger
-"Dating and breaking up is just the practice of marrying and getting a divorce"- this is probably my favorite quotes from one of my close friends and youth worker
We can be thankful that nobody has to go into marriage with no guide or plan to follow. We have a blueprint from God in the Bible on what a marriage is supposed to look like. So here is a simple blueprint of what marriage is supposed to look like. As we grow closer to God, we also grow closer to our spouse.
So what is God's purpose in establishing marriage?
1) To Provide a Helper- Genesis 2:18
It is nearly impossible to make it through life on our own so God provides a helper. Now there are some people that God calls to never marry, but He does not call them to be lonely.
2) To Establish a Connection- Genesis 2:24
When two people are married they become one. There is a spiritual, emotional, and physical connection, but the main thing to consider here is that there is a connection that occurs. This connection does not end. That is why you give your spouse a wedding ring as a gift in the wedding ceremony because a ring has not end just as your connection with your spouse has no end. Even if a divorce occurs, they will still have a connection that can never be broken.
I then showed them on the back of their listening guide some homework that I wanted them to do later that night. I asked for them to write down 3 marriages that they admire and why and the qualities in that marriage. Then I asked them to write down 4 things that they should look for in a person that would make a lasting marriage. Then they were to write down what they need to do to become the right person that will have a lasting marriage because marriage isn't as much finding the right person, as it is becoming the right person.
We then ended the night with the adults encircling the students to pray over them. One of the things that I am eternally grateful to my parents for is that they committed early in my life to pray for me and for my future spouse. I know that Belinda is the answer to that prayer. So for this series we are going to end each night with the adults encircling the students and praying 2 prayers over them: 1) that they will become the right person that they need to be in order to have a godly marriage; 2) for their future spouse that they will become the right person that they need to be in order to have a godly marriage.