“Divorce is NOT an option!” That is what my wife and I were told at our very first marriage counseling session. It actually wasn’t a counseling session, but a marriage class at our church. To us it served as a marriage counseling session. We were just over one year into our marriage, young, and completely clueless!
Marriage has never been viewed the same. I firmly believe had we not taken that class, heard that statement, and learned that perspective on marriage, we would not be married today.
We weren’t on the brink of divorce at the time, but we had no foundation for our marriage. The pressures and the struggles we’ve encountered, both self-inflicted and other, would have made us crumble.
Fortunately we both received that. From that point on we had one choice when we encountered problems. Together fight through them, over them, or around them. There was no quitting. There was no going our separate ways, no finding someone else, and no “irreconcilable differences.” All differences became reconcilable by default. We became that cornered animal, that would fight you, anybody, or anything that threatened our marriage!
If you’ve been to church, or listened to a married couple who has been to church, you have probably heard the phrase, “leave and cleave.” It is based upon Genesis 2:24, “that is why a man leaves his father and mother and is united to his wife, and they become one flesh.” When divorce is not an option in your life you have to eliminate all options. In doing so, you are forced to make your spouse a priority in all situations.
All options includes old relationships, old ways, old places, and even old thinking. No, you are not to disown your parents, family, and friends. But anything that may reopen the option of divorce, or separate thinking, or lead you down that path, needs to be left alone. That is a hard pill to swallow, and many marriages have failed here.
Eliminating options may sound restrictive and limiting at first. It is not. It frees you to experience the wonderful things God has for marriages. It frees you to communicate about any and everything. There are no hidden activities, or conversations. It frees you to learn more about one another.
If you are still hanging with the fellas all the time, you are missing some time to learn your wife. The same applies to wives, and hanging with your girls. And it frees you to do whatever you both desire in your bedroom, “marriage is honorable among all, and the bed undefiled.” (Hebrews 13:4).
I HATE divorce! I HATE divorce with a passion! I have witnessed too many couples go through the pain of divorce and separation. Many of these couples have been close to us. I have seen the hurt, the pain, the impact on their children, and even on their finances. Look at what Malachi 2:15 says, “‘For I hate divorce!” says the Lord, the God of Israel. ’To divorce your wife is to overwhelm her with cruelty.’” That is pretty serious!
When the couples we knew went through their divorces I always wondered if divorce had always been an option to them. If they learned what we learned early in our marriage, and received it, would they have fought like a cornered animal for their marriage? And then I wonder, did I tell them, “Divorce is NOT an option!“
Today, I am telling you and every other couple “Divorce is NOT an option!” That stance and the removal of other options that could reopen divorce as an option, have worked for me and my marriage. I am certain it can for you as well. I am not promising easy, but nothing valuable in life is. Read that statement, receive it, and live your marriage like “Divorce is NOT an option!“
Question: Have you received one piece of advice for your marriage that you know, without a doubt, has kept your marriage still standing today? Please share in the comment section below.