The rate at which marriages break up in this country in recent times has shown that it takes more than a signature in the register of a church and marriage registry to make a marriage. Evidence has also proved that the grandeur and splendor of a wedding celebration have no relationship with the stability of the marriage. And that divorce has been on the increase since wedding became an ego-boosting ceremony. Greater importance is attached to the delicacies to be served during wedding receptions than the solemn vows to live with each other until death separates them.
Why most couples go to the church to lie deliberately to themselves and God by making false pledges in the presence of a pastor and invited guests is baffling. Whenever I hear couples repeating after the pastor: “I ……… take ……… to be my wedded wife/husband to have and to hold, this day forward for better for worse, for richer for poorer, in sickness and in health until death do us part.” I usually smile to myself, knowing fully well that the couple might be accomplishing a mere formality. It will be more realistic if the pledge is changed to: “For we stay, for worse we separate” because this is what is at the core of most people’s heart as they go for the marriage. Why then deceive ourselves with “till death do us part?”
Even the absolute fidelity most couples pledge to each other on the wedding day is nothing but false. A day after the wedding, the men are back in the streets hunting girls like cats hunting for mice. I will like to mention here to the credit of the women that they are slower to become unfaithful to their husbands but once they start they rarely stop, which eventually leads to the breakage of many marriages.
Most people marry without knowing their partners well and after the marriage has been contracted, they start asking themselves; “Have I not married the wrong person?” Some women marry men because of their wealth, regardless of their weaknesses, while some men would marry a girl because she is very beautiful or always well-dressed, all of them being blind to the unpleasant traits of their partners until they get married. It is then they start complaining when it is already late. I don’t see the present rate of divorce declining till our men and women begin to love their partners for what they are and not how much benefit they can derive from them.
Some women are so desperate to hook the man of their dream that they don’t mind engaging in acts of blackmail, character assassination, fighting of any opponent, making charms and many other devilish acts forgetting that things artificial are known not to have a long life-span. Dear would-be wife, if you eventually get the man to marry you, can you keep him?
The commonest shortcoming of married couples is deception. Deception cannot last forever, it will eventually become apparent and when it does, a crisis of confidence will ensue. “Whoever would love life and see good days must keep his tongue from evil and his lips from deceitful speech. He must turn from evil and do good; he must seek peace and pursue it. For the eyes of the Lord are on the righteous and His ears are attentive to their prayer.” 1 Peter 3:10-12. Most partners are unwilling to acknowledge their mistakes and shortcomings. A frank and prompt apology does much to ensure the respect and devotion of the spouse than does any attempt to ignore an injustice or resort to deception. But most people, especially the males, regard it as a sign of weakness to apologize.
Another thing that breaks many homes is giving birth to too many children without adequate income and plans on how to cater for them. Married life is practical, so courtship should involve a practical approach.