Friday, August 24, 2007

CHRISTIAN PARENTS: WHAT DO YOU TEACH YOUR CHILDREN ABOUT MARRIAGE?

Do you...

  • ...encourage your children to wait until they've obtained a certain level of education before they consider marriage?
  • ...deride or belittle young couples who marry at (what is now considered) a young age?
  • ...tell your children they shouldn't get married until they're "financially ready"? (whatever that means!)
  • ...praise people who wait until they are older to marry? (for reasons like achievements, career, or educational attainments)

If so, I'd ask you to reconsider what you are teaching your children.

I believe we do our children HARM when we give them contradictory messages about purity and our expectations for their young adult lives. For example, many parents expect their children to wait until they are married to have sex, but then ask (and encourage) them to walk through their young lives unmarried, beginning in puberty through high school (which is hard enough!), but then continuing straight on through college, and into grad school, with the goals of financial freedom and career success being placed above marriage.

Let me say, as I've had people suggest otherwise, that I too want to have confidence in my children (and in the things that we've poured into them) and will entrust them fully to the Lord. However, I do not want to put pressure on them or place unnecessary expectations that will ultimately lead to impurity, simply because they were made to feel that they were too young to marry, or that I expect them to "get through" certain hoops before marriage is prudent (in whatever terms I've decreed).

I believe we Christians have taken on the world's priorities in this area, and our children and their marriages will suffer if we do not look at God's perspective on marriage and family and adjust our views accordingly. These institutions (and not financial stability or educational achievement) were given to us by God as primary means of our sanctification and growth. We do wrong when we give our children priorities that line up more with those of the world than those of the Bible.

Here's an article I'd recommend for further consideration: A Peculiar People: Sex & the Young Christian


Let us not place unnecessary yokes on our children's necks that even we ourselves would not be able to live up to. So many men and women of recent generations (which married around 20-25 years old) did not make it to their wedding beds pure. In a generation that is DAILY surrounded by messages that scream out that sex is "no big deal", we are foolish to believe that we can encourage our children to postpone marriage until they reach their late 20's or early 30's or beyond and then also expect that they will (by and large) make it to their wedding beds unscathed by the lust of their flesh.


Just something I've had on my mind... hope it gives you food for thought as well! As always, thoughts and comments are welcomed.

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