Marriage advice wanted : LUSENET : A.M.E. Today Discussion : One Thread

Hey you guys before you start typing away or in the case of brother bill start writing your manuscript let me explain;-) I love performing weddings for to ask a minister to perform a wedding is to ask God, Jesus and the Holy spirit into the ceremony and the life of the couple. I have performed many weddings and they are always a joy to do. Tonight I met with a couple whose wedding I am doing next month, and the bride to be walked into the meeting with a tatered king james bible. She held it up proudly and said she had had it since she was 10 she is 27 now. She and her fiance find that they are growing closer to God. I explain to my couples that the wedding is not about the dress, reception, flowers, family, money etc. But it is about their love relationship with God and the love they have for each other. Getting married is an exciting time to reaffirm one's relationship with God. So to all my wise and brilliant A.m.e family members who are married what advice or pearls of wisdom would you share with young couples getting married today. Also share how your relationship with God had helped your marriage. Thanks everyone!!!

-- Anonymous, July 24, 2002


Divorce is not an option! All of my couples must make this vow before God, each other and the me.

BE Blessed Al Paris

-- Anonymous, July 25, 2002

I feel strongly that as a pastor part of my role is supporting the couple over a period of time. So I offer "marriage tune-ups" we take our cars in to be tuned up, change the oil, put on snow tires, etc. Shouldn't marriages always be a high priority. I do not judge my couples, relationship require work and in order to do that one has to have the right tools. I begin with premarital counseling, we discuss finances, history of both families,(i.e divorce, alcoholism, etc.) communication i.e I messages, what gets up upside. Happiness! To often couples say I am marrying because he/she makes me happy, happiness comes from God and our relationship with him not from a human being, we discuss expectations. I also offer 3 follow up sessions for a year after the wedding and we make the appointments before the wedding. Yes it is extra work, but the rewards are so great! I really believe with all my heart that the church can and should help couples. This can be done with marriage tetreats, and other workshops.

-- Anonymous, July 25, 2002

Rev. Paris:

I am intrigued with your zero-tolerance policy about divorce. While I commend your intent to discourage family disintegration, your edict appears to me somewhat problematic. Consider the case of infidelity. If there is prima facie evidence of an unfaithful spouse would this not constitute grounds for terminating the marital contract? In one of the Gospels Jesus himself used this as the principal factor for marital dissolution. Or, what about repeated physical violence directed at a spouse(disproportionately female) by an uncaring and unsympathetic mate? Can one really expect a loving relationship to be cultivated in the presence of physical safety concerns? I think not. Finally, what if a spouse has a change of view and no longer desires to have children? Many, but not all, couples wed for the three fold purpose of companionship, uninterrupted sexual intimacy and procreation. Suppose a spouse abdicates on the last purpose what is his/her partner suppossed to do? A woman's biological clock can't be rewinded. Male testosterone is not inexhaustible in supply. This dilemma may very well justify the often abused phrase, "irreconciliable differences". QED

-- Anonymous, July 25, 2002

Infidelity is the only Biblical cause for divorce. We simply can't get around that. As for the safety/abuse issue, a victim can leave for safety, but should not divorce. We should also note the issue of financial protection. Some spouses run up huge bills the other is liable for, and when this happens a lawyer should be consulted to initiate protective measures. However divorce is not an option for the Christian here.

As far as changes in life plans, God has laid out an authority structure in the home. The Christian should follow it. These issues really aren't that hard. I've been studying Watchman Nee's book "Spiritual Authority". A major point he makes is when we live by reason life becomes very complex as we try to sort out every issue. But the person who has learned Biblical principles of authority finds life to be very simple and liberating. A family who lives by God's authority structures, including those set up for the home, will have very few problems as they spurn the spirit of rebellion promoted by the world. My wife and I have found this to certainly be true.

-- Anonymous, July 25, 2002

The idea is to motivate the couple to refrain from doing anything that could make the union untenable. It seems to erect a barrier that when approached both will back away and say, "I can't go there". In the early fifties, when divorce was more difficult, couples worked harder to make thier marriages work. Make no mistake about it, all relationships require much maintenance, WORK. If we enter into marriage with the idea that if it dosen't work, we can get terminate the marriage, it is doomed to failure. Though unspoken, I fear that many marriages are made on just that basis. The "No Divorce" clause does not preclude them living apart and keep all the vows made. Either of the party could conceiveably decide to live apart but would not be free from the vow to remain faithful to the spouse; that is they would not be free to marry or engage again in any relationship (shacking up, etc.) without breaking the vow. Of course, the vow has no power to control behavior; but serves the same function as the Law of Moses.

Be Blessed Pastor Paris

-- Anonymous, July 26, 2002

Marriage relationships as any other relationships we have should mirror our relationship with God. As long as we maintain a central focus on Him we should be able to grow together. Encourage truth in the relationship and with the parties involved. Sometimes we don't get to the heart of the matter leaving our hearts tattered. Namely, marriages of obligation or pressure often cause more trouble than good. Yes it is better to marry than to burn, but that just means you have to work that much harder to get into the type of longterm partnership God would have for you. It is cool to be in God's permissive will but better to be in His perfect will. Let Him guide the relationship and you (the parties involved) stay close to Him and He will bring you closer to each other... Your only obligation is to God, not your parents or your friends or your ticking biological clock or that elder that told you to get married single preacher.

-- Anonymous, July 27, 2002

My advise to any one who is contemplating marriage, is to first ask God if the person is His choice for you. Not all marriages that take place in a church are put together by God. secondly,I believe as preachers and pastors we need to be careful when we state that the only reason for divorce is just infidelity(yes I am familiar with the scripture). I struggled with this very issue when came up in my life. I pleaded with the Lord that it would not be a good thing for me as a women preacher. However when the divorce did go thru, I asked God why? His answer was this scripture. "I am the Lord thy God which brought thee out of the land of Egypt, out of the house of bondage."

-- Anonymous, July 29, 2002


When we look at the word "infidelity", we often think of it in terms of sexual misconduct.

The word means "a breaking of the covenant/promise/commitment" and is akin to idolatry.

So...when you promise to love, honor, and cherish your spouse...and you are not keeping up your end of the bargain (by cheating on them, ignoring them, lying to them, or verbally/physically/mentally abusing them) you are committing marital infidelity.

Your marriage to your spouse should (and often does) reflect your marriage to God. Someone that isn't praying to God on a daily basis, attending church on a weekly basis, tithing on a regular basis, or serving on an ongoing basis is already unequally yoked, and doesn't need to get married. Conversely, if your relationship with someone you can see isn't right, how can it get any better with the one you can't see?

[sound of a worm can opening]

The men of the Old Testament could divorce their wives for failing to "please them"; in other words, in addition sexual misconduct, a man could divorce a woman simply because he didn't find her appealing anymore.

When Jesus came, he re-iterated that infidelity was the only reason for divorce. In doing so, he brought accountability and responsibility back into marriage.

That's it for now.....

-- Anonymous, July 30, 2002

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