Yes I'm sure you've probably heard that a million times and you're tired of it. But at the same time, it's hard to remember, isn't it?
I've recently discovered that it can be really bad for your marriage.
I'm not really talking so much about comparing your marriage to your friends' marriages (though that can certainly be bad too). But I'm more talking about comparing your marriage and your spouse (and yourself for that matter) to what's expected or at least accepted in our society. What's portrayed in the movies and on TV as well as what the celebrities are doing in real life.
Porn is now widely accepted and even considered necessary. From some of the stuff I've read on the internet, some people think I am ridiculous and crude and just need to get over the fact that I think porn is wrong. Everybody views it. Especially men. It's innocent. And wives should actually be glad their men are viewing porn rather than cheating when they need sex and we are not in the mood.
WRONG! Porn is so damaging. On so many levels. It makes sex seem purely physical rather than an intimate connection between husband and wife. And in a lot of ways it's cheating. And the truth is, it's not necessary. It's possible to overcome. It's possible to live life without it. Especially with God.
Movies like Love Actually (Alan Rickman and Emma Thompson's story) tell us that men need young and attractive women and once their wives get older, they will look elsewhere. Movies like He's Just not that into You (Bradley Cooper, Scarlett Johansson, and Jennifer Connelly's story) tell us that it's okay for a man to cheat if he finds someone more attractive and it's good that it happened anyway because his wife forced him into marriage when he didn't want it.
NO! This isn't true! The truth is my grandparents have been married 56 years and my other grandparents have been married 63 years. The truth is you made a commitment. A promise to each other and to God to stick together till death. And to remain faithful through it all. It's not inevitable that your husband will look elsewhere. It's not inevitable that you will divorce. No!
Shows like Everybody Loves Raymond tell us that women are always right and men are stupid and don't know what's going on and always make mistakes. And the women just roll their eyes and have to redo everything themselves and treat their husbands like another child to take care of.
NOT SO! Our husbands are grown men. They are capable of life. Sometimes they might have a different idea or opinion than we do but that doesn't mean they're wrong. You are in this marriage together as a team. Hear each other out and share the responsibility.
Our broadcast media and simply the world we live in today tell us that bragging about sexually assaulting women is only "locker room talk" and that all men are very sexual beings that can't help themselves. It also tells us that it's acceptable to cheat on your wife with 11 other women. And allegedly rape a few. And that the wife should stay with the husband, deny these things, and actually help cover them up because... Well, I don't really know why. Politics? Because he can't help it? Because boys will be boys?
ENOUGH! Do you see where I'm going with this?
If you're not careful, you'll start believing these things are universal truths. After all, 50% of marriages end in divorce, right? (Fun fact, that statistic is completely made up - 75% of all statistics are, you know). You'll start to worry about what's going to happen when you get old and fat. You'll lose trust in your husband because all men need attractive women, right? He can't help himself. You'll belittle him and treat him like another one of your children and he might grow to resent you for it.
Okay maybe that's a little extreme. But I think these things can really start to creep into our subconscious minds until we start to believe them a little. I mean they're constantly thrown in our face. We have to combat them with truth. We have to remember that God has a different plan for marriage. We are in the world but not of the world. And so are our husbands.
"Do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewal of your mind, that by testing you may discern what is the will of God, what is good and acceptable and perfect." - Romans 12:2 ESV
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