The statistics shown that 1 in 3 children are now from a broken home. Also, statistics revealed that divorce among mature couples are rocketing as couples claim they fall out of love.
The saying use to be that the first five years of marriage are the most difficult and risk of divorce is higher between the first year of marriage and ten years of marriage. Sadly, what the church is now witnessing is couples married over 10years, 18years or shockingly 40 years getting divorce at a time when their marriage is supposed to be stronger and more solid!
Often times, one of the couple will say ” I did not had the slightest knowledge that the marriage was under stress whatsoever” mostly, the shock leads to depression . I think it is time we arise and pay more attention to each other and stop taking one another for granted.
The society or environment says it is simply unrealistic to be married and remained together for 40 years or 50 years. I call it lies of the enemy to pervert the work of God, to destroy family and marriage institution. The bible says ’till death part us’ God’s plan is as long as we are both alive , even if it is 70 years we remain married together , giving honour to one another in love and in Christ.
It is time we pause and ask questions: What are we doing wrong? What is weakening the walls of Christian Marriages? How did we get here? What has made the love to die? What has made the closeness to varnish? What can we do differently… It is time the church arise to rebuild the broken walls of family, Christian homes and not be in denial.
Why would a couple be together and decide to divorce after 40 years? Thinking deeply about this and help of holy spirit I realised the number one reason for this is as we progress in marriage we begin to live together as PEACEKEEPER rather than PEACEMAKER.
We no longer resolve dispute/ issues/ conflict as they arise but sweep things under the carpet. We no longer communicate but keep quiet because of fear of not upsetting one another . We call it having quiet spirit, gentle spirit and trusting God to bring the solution.
” I am not happy about my spouse reaction , words to me but I will keep the peace, at least we are not fighting about things, he shut down when there is dispute , or yell or keep malice. I really don’t want any of that so I am keeping the peace and be quiet”
”Conflict is poison to a marriage, we should live in peace, avoid conflict at all cost”
Can anyone relate to any of the above quotes? I think we all do!
It may sound wise but can this sustain our marriage for 40years and still counting…
Ps34:14: Seek peace and pursue it. Seeking peace does not mean seeking absence of conflict. It means a relationship characterized by mutual goodwill and understanding. God’s heart is always oneness. There is no way you are a Peacekeeper in the marriage and you will be one with your spouse, in your heart you are hurting.. you are not agreeing with each other but agreeing not to disagree.
A PEACEKEEPER will come to all kind of compromises to avoid conflict but none would work because you are not United in truth, mind, harmony,motives, vision hence divorce rate of mature couples who have been PEACEKEEPERS for many many years until the walls breakdown!
How can we then be Peacemaker and not peacekeeper? ” blessed are the peacemakers, for they will be called children of God ( Mathew 5: 9) . Making peace means understanding the secrets weapon of the enemy ( pride, envy, anger, malice, unforgiveness, jealousy, lies) and guard against it . Making peace means pushing through a conflict until you get to the other side, where you feel United with God and each other. A place where you understand each other, you feel intimate and like one again, A PLACE WHERE THERE IS NO WINNER OR LOSER IN A CONFLICT. It is not a competition.
When the Apostles Paul and Peter were not United in thoughts and purpose, they called each other on it,they debated it and in the end they made peace with each other and were able to work in unity. Likewise in our homes, as a couple when we disagree , please let us talk about issues, communicate with compassion , understanding and love.
How can you be of one mind with someone who does not know your heart? Someone who does not know the action or words said that hurt your feelings? If we keep our feelings bottled up, thinking that would make us better wife / husband we may be working directly against intimacy and digging walls of the marriage. Sometimes the route to peace and understanding goes through conflict. No two people will agree on everything. Two people with different backgrounds, personality, expectations and even gender , joined together in Marriage, they will experience friction. The maturity is talking through issues, working together as PEACEMAKER, working to achieve oneness, then we understand each other better and build the walls of our marriage.
The healthiest couples are not those where the wife/ husband states his / her position and the other react by yelling/ shutting her/ him down/ keeping malice or worse , never states his / her position in the first place for fear of the spouse’s reaction. The healthiest couple are those who seek conflict resolution by talking and praying through issues, not looking to be the winner, ready to make peace to rebuild the wall of Trust, closeness and intimacy not putting each other down by words, not name calling, keeping malice, tearing down eachother’s confidence, erupting in anger.
Covering for sin does not help someone grows spiritually, it allows that sin to grow instead. It is time we begin to work as PEACEMAKER in our homes. A PEACEKEEPER simply avoid conflict but it backfires while a PEACEMAKER is aiming for much more, reconciliation, oneness, unity, intimacy and lasting marriage.
There is something wrong with refusing to deal with issues in our marriage, being one is more important than being right.
Some couples will even resolve to be a PEACEKEEPER until the children grows hoping the divorce will not affect them then . They keep the peace ,the truth is the Adult children are greatly affected! The pain they experience is great! An adult child whose parent divorce said it felt like being orphaned! The adult children are more traumatized, they question all the vision, the growing up experiences, the unity , love and security they experienced, oftentimes it affect their family too if they marry as they can no longer trust, they become detach, distance and sometimes have identity crisis.
Jesus gave us the blueprint of what to do when we cannot agree together. We are supposed to lean on other people. We may need the help of other people to make peace and achieve oneness or to make our spouse accountable. I am not saying call people into every conflict in our homes but some issues are so big, it cannot be ignored or you have tried but it persists. Maybe it is time to put the culture away and seek a marriage counsellor to walk through the difficult period in your marriage and healing process with you. Sometimes the marriage can be save by seeking help in a timely manner than been a PEACEKEEPER for many years until we can’t keep the peace any longer. I always recommend professional christian counsellors who will work with us and also pray with us. Please let us not live in denial.
May God open the eyes of our understanding, give us wisdom to be PEACEMAKER and not PEACEKEEPER that indeed our marriages will be till death part us in Jesus Name.