Most of us either know someone who is planning on getting married or maybe you’re planning that special event yourself. If that’s true, then we encourage you to pay attention to what Dr Randy Carlson has to say in this Marriage Message. In it, he gives various reasons as to why you may NOT want to get married (if certain circumstances hold true).
If you don’t need this information yourself, you may want to pass it onto someone else who is planning marriage, for them to prayerfully consider what Dr Carlson writes.
It was featured in a past issue of “Insights and Inspiration” —a magazine, which the ministry of Family Life Radio formerly sent to their subscribers. This article was titled, “Seven Reasons Not to Get Married.” The following is what Dr Carlson shares:
Reasons Not to Get Married
“Those who marry will face many troubles in this life, and I want to spare you this.“ (1 Corinthians 7:28)
Can you imagine this passage of Scripture quoted as part of a wedding ceremony? The Apostle Paul’s realistic take on marriage goes against the romantic ideal of “love at first sight.” And even more, it goes against the belief that wedlock will bring perpetual bliss. But Paul’s opinion on marriage does spotlight a truth that couples cannot afford to ignore. It’s relevant whether they’re contemplating getting married, are already engaged, or have been wed for years.
Being a husband or wife is not easy. More specific, marriage will, at times, bring great difficulty. Divorce remains prevalent because many couples do not realize this, so when trouble comes, they give up too soon, hurt and disillusioned as their definition of what a marriage should be becomes shattered.
I don’t want that to happen to you. Therefore, I put together this unusual list, and even did an entire radio program on this topic —the Seven Reasons Not to Get Married —to give you the reality check you need to go into marriage, or continue onward in your existing marriage, with your eyes wide open. Consider each one carefully and honestly.
You should probably not get married if…
1. You are unwilling to put the needs of another person above your own.
Romans 12:10 says, “Be devoted to one another in brotherly love. Honor one another above yourselves.“ In the Greek, “devoted” is defined in this verse as reciprocal tenderness, while “honor” is identified as showing deference to another person. How often are these characteristics apparent in how you behave toward your fiance or spouse?
2. You are easily offended, carry grudges and are unwilling to forgive.
An overly sensitive, vengeful or calloused attitude has no place in any relationship, especially a marriage. The Bible gives you the challenging yet correct standard: “Forgive as the Lord forgave you.“ (Colossians 3:13)
3. You are an abusive person (mentally, emotionally, physically).
Author and domestic violence expert Lundy Bancroft finds that abusers —who, by the way, are primarily men but also include women —abuse for a variety of reasons. This includes a need for power and control, finding someone to blame for their problems, and wanting to be the center of attention. Do you see yourself anywhere in these attributes?
4. You do not share the same beliefs, values, life priorities or vision.
“For this reason a man will leave his father and mother and be united to his wife, and they will become one flesh.“ (Genesis 2:24) Oneness is essential in marriage, and its foundation is built on these characteristics.
5. You have an unresolved addiction problem.
“Like a city whose walls are broken down,” Proverbs 25:28 says, “is a man who lacks self-control.“ The Web site Addictions.org lists a variety of harmful addictions affecting millions of people. They include addictions to sex, shopping, sleeping, people pleasing, perfectionism, pornography, and overworking. Each will undermine a marriage if ignored.
6. Your career is the most important thing in your life.
Philippians 2:3 says, “Do nothing out of selfish ambition or vain conceit. But in humility consider others better than yourselves.“ Selfish ambition is interpreted in the Greek as “a desire to put one’s self forward, a partisan and fractious spirit.” Vain conceit is identified as “groundless, empty pride.” Examine how your profession shapes who you are. Does it bring out these traits in you?
7. You are unwilling to be an active sexual partner with your spouse.
As a couple, read 1 Corinthians 7:1-5. The Bible speaks directly to this vital issue; verse 3 is clear: “The husband should fulfill his marital duty to his wife, and likewise the wife to her husband.“ There’s no room in a healthy marriage for sexual games, and an active sexual relationship works to ward off temptation to sin.
Don’t be discouraged if you struggle with any of the above reasons. A quality marriage is not defined as one that’s perfect. But do yourself, and your future or current spouse, a favor by committing to change or grow stronger individually in each area. You won’t regret it, and will be able to face and overcome the “troubles” of marriage with unity and in God’s power.
Sober Reality Checks
If you aren’t married yet, please prayerfully consider each point. God takes our wedding vows VERY seriously, and do should we. Don’t get so caught up in marrying, that you forget to realistically take the marriage, after the wedding, into consideration. Each of these points are ones you should take soberly as reality checks. If you or your fiancé are lacking and, if there is unhealthy behavior or thoughts on these matters going on, PLEASE STOP THE WEDDING. Back up and consider these as warning flags to NOT get married, until or unless these matters are completely resolved.
On the other hand, if you ARE married, and you see one of these character issues going on in you or your spouse, you need help. Please don’t look at this Marriage Message as a reason to try to get out of your marriage. This message is being given to prevent some unhealthy marriages from happening, in the first place. If you already made your vows, ask God, find the help you need, and make sure you do your part in contributing good into the marriage, not toxicity. You can’t do your spouses part. But you can do yours. It is our hope and prayer that you will.
We pray that God will use these “seeds” of thoughts to benefit those who read them. We have a lot of articles, and recommended resources posted on the Marriage Missions web site. Please take advantage of them to help you in your marital journey. Also, to read more marriage advice from Dr Carlson, you can visit his web site at: Theintentionallife.com.
Cindy and Steve Wright