Friday, July 31, 2009

The Case for Early Marriage in Christianity Today

This article is a must read! Read the whole thing and share your thoughts!


Mel Gruver said...

I have to be honest, This was a little painful to read. I guess mainly b/c while there were some assumptions the author and I share, many of his assumptions were so other than the ideas I have about marriage, college student development (both spiritual and other), and dependency.

However, I did read it all, per your request and I can't really get on board. I have a high view of marriage as a sacrament- an outward sign if inward grace and I dont believe that that marriage is a required stop on the male developmental express. -as an educator, it seems that the pressure on evangelical men to be these "polished leaders" in a marriage from day one (much less during the dating relationship as well) is unrealistic practically and developmentally. This paired with a low view of marriage as merely a covenant that we do, b/c we are good Christians and want to have sex and not truly a means of dispensing grace to others makes it definitely understandable that marriage is in a declining state.

I've hold my V card proudly at age 26 b/c people weren't afraid to talk truthfully to me about sex and very strongly let me know that if I did abstain it would be MY choice, not my parents'. I think i would have to take young marriages on a case by case basis, but I wouldn't necessarily claim that they are better.

As a side note, I think the emphasis on financial security in the article is a little unfortunate, b/c we could learn more from relying to be more dependent on one another... which I know your family is in that place right now and praise God for all the lessons that I am sure you all are/will learn(ing).

Anyway- that is a LONG comment of mine. Maybe I'm a little to Ecumenical for this Evangelical writer...I guess I could drive down to Austin and chat with him about it. :)
love ya'll!

Emily Doss said...

I was interested to read this because Daniel and I were "early marriers."

In our case all the circumstances came together and it worked, not always easy breezy, but wonderful none the less. (9 years strong!)

I also have friends and family that would have loved to be "early marriers" and it just hasn't happened.

Sometimes I feel like Christians tell each other that if you become a Christian and do things right you will then get a whole package: nice job, good marriage, wonderful children, etc...what do we do with them when they are let down by the expectations WE have set for them instead of the plan God has set for them.

I fear that focusing on marriage would presume that marriage is His plan for everyone.

I do agree that healthy marriage should be focused on more and more because less and less of us have seen healthy marriages growing up and we desperately need examples of how to make marriage work.

Catrina said...

Reading this article took me back to your messages on extended adolescence.

I don't think any one formula will work for every couple or produce perfect marriages in every circumstance (early marriages or post college education marriages).

As for the purity issue, the Word is clear as to sexual relationships and marriage. I think above all we need to speak truth to the upcoming generation about each matter. Let's not get sidetracked on anything. Let's not get them sidetracked on any one thing. Let's lead them intentionally and with great passion toward the Answer to every circumstance.

As a mother of two daughters, purity and marriage is in practically every prayer I utter over my children. But if I do what the Lord intends with my girls they will develop their own desperation for the Lord and those issues will be only another opportunity for them to depend on Him for direction and obedience.

I married Mike at age 18. He was 21. It's not always been easy, but it's always been worth it. We have regrets and things we wish we would have done differently, but it's been the growing together and building on the Lord's firm foundation that has built between us an intimacy that no physical experience ever could have.

The issue with marriage is one of a million others within our church body that is suffering because we've become unwilling to say the hard things and stand our ground as set apart. In the world not of the world.

An interesting article no doubt. A reminder to me personally that it's time to refocus and run hard after Jesus. He's the only answer.

Anonymous said...

Loved these three posts and really can't add anything not already stated except a book I'm reading on the subject is so good. I thought I had heard all there was to hear about Christian marriage, but God made this one stand out to me. Haven't finished it yet, but it's very good so far, profound really. "Sacred Marriage" by Gary Thomas. "What if God designed marriage to make us holy more than to make us happy? Just imagine God thinking like that, huh? Thanks for sharing, very interesting and for me rang true for the most part. Love you all, Betty Barnard

Lori said...

I read the article to and we were definitely married early. I was 19 and Dustin was 21. We just found out recently that DW's 18 yr. old sister is pregnant. So I have been thinking a lot about raising our 3 girls and praying for their purity. It was interesting, and I think it is definitely a case by case situation. If we're talking 2 strong christian's that are being mentored by an older christian couple that OK's the marriage. But there are many teens marrying just for fun, with no guidance from anyone.