Do Children kill Marriage? No, We do.
God intended for children to be a blessing and to strengthen the bond of marriage (Psalm 127). God does this through them; If we are willing to die to self. Having children forces us to work together with our spouse. The Bible says; that wherever there is selfish ambition; there you will find disorder of every kind (James 3:16). It is this disorder that brings the demise of a marriage. When we look out for our own needs and disregard our spouse's needs; we ruin what God intended to be a blessing.
The sin of selfishness is deeply rooted in our hearts; this sin is DESTRUCTIVE. In fact, children have a wonderful way to get us outside of ourselves. God desires and commands us to carry our cross and die to self (Matthew 16:24), but we can still choose to disobey God and exercise pride over humility. We can also choose to function in a marriage with a self-seeking attitude. But if we do this, WE will create problems and pay the consequences for it. The Bible says in Galatians 6:7.
"Do not be deceived, God is not mocked; for whatever a man sows, that he will also reap".
People ruin their lives by their own foolishness and then are angry at the LORD- Proverbs 19:3.
God gives us an account that illustrates Proverbs 19:3 in Genesis 2:18, 1Timothy 2:13 & Genesis 3:11. In Genesis 2:18 we read,
The LORD God said, "It is not good for the man to be alone. I will make a helper suitable for him."
Then we find out in 1Timothy 2:13 that when Eve was deceived, Adam knew what he was doing and willingly sinned against God. But when Adam was confronted by God about his sin, he blamed God for giving him his wife. Take a look:
And He said, “Who told you that you were naked? Have you eaten from the tree of which I commanded you that you should not eat?”
Then the man said, “The woman whom You gave to be with me, she gave me of the tree, and I ate.”
Just like our Ancestors, we rather blame everyone else for our sin, including God, rather than to take personal responsibility for our shortcomings.
God tells us that, "anyone who hears his teaching and doesn't obey it is foolish, like a person who builds a house on sand (Matthew 7:26)
If we choose to ignore God's word, we are acting foolish. Philippians 2:1-11 is a great model that God gives us for the success of our marriage and any other relationship we have. Take a Look:
Philippians 2 Have the Attitude of Christ 2 Is there any encouragement from belonging to Christ? Any comfort from his love? Any fellowship together in the Spirit? Are your hearts tender and compassionate? 2 Then make me truly happy by agreeing wholeheartedly with each other, loving one another, and working together with one mind and purpose. 3 Don’t be selfish; don’t try to impress others. Be humble, thinking of others as better than yourselves. 4 Don’t look out only for your own interests, but take an interest in others, too. 5 You must have the same attitude that Christ Jesus had. 6 Though he was God,[a] he did not think of equality with God as something to cling to. 7 Instead, he gave up his divine privileges[b]; he took the humble position of a slave[c] and was born as a human being. When he appeared in human form,[d] 8 he humbled himself in obedience to God and died a criminal’s death on a cross. 9 Therefore, God elevated him to the place of highest honor and gave him the name above all other names, 10 that at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, in heaven and on earth and under the earth, 11 and every tongue declare that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father.
If we choose not to follow this model we will reap the consequences of failure in our Marriage.
Now, I don't want to make you think that I do not sympathize with the hardships of marriage and parenting. I have struggled greatly in both roles. The reality is that both marriage and having children can be stressful (I have discussed the struggles of parenting and Marriage in two different posts called, "Overcoming the Hardships of Parenting" and "How to Protect Our Marriage from Cheating and Divorce"). I know there are legitimate Christians who have tried everything to keep their marriage afloat and have not been able to; my heart sincerely goes out to you, if you are one of them. And God sympathizes with you also (Micah 2:16). This post is written for relationships that claim to be Christ-centered. If we claim to be Christ-centered, their is no excuse for the demise of our marriage. God wants to teach us how to handle stress in a healthy way. He wants to help us succeed over our circumstances, no matter how hard they might be. And He is able to do it. God never gives us a promise in His word that He is not able to fulfill.
In my experience the pressure of having children saved my marriage, in that it forced me, to get out of myself. It gave me no other choice than to obey God's word or drown in my sin. It is unfortunate that some marriages that claim to follow Christ don't make it through this transition that was intended for the blessing, strengthening, and formation of God's character in our lives.
A Message to Those in Troubled Marriages
If you currently find yourself at what seems to be the end of your marriage and feel that there is no hope for your family, think again. We were there. If both parties claim to serve God, termination of marriage is NOT acceptable in God's eyes. God HATES divorce because it brakes the hearts of children and couples alike (Micah 2:16). He wishes that we would turn from our sin so that HE could heal the sickness of our heart. Take a look below:
“As surely as I live, says the Sovereign Lord, I take no pleasure in the death of wicked people. I only want them to turn from their wicked ways so they can live. Turn! Turn from your wickedness, O people of Israel! Why should you die?” Ezekiel 33:11 NLT
If you find yourself without hope for your spouse, think again, both my husband and I have been in that position in different ways. Stick it through, CALL out to your God, Get some counseling and work on your marriage and DO NOT GIVE UP! OUR God IS A God OF WONDER. There is NO limit to what he can do in the human heart.
If you find yourself in an abusive marriage, please see my post labeled: "Enabling Sinful Behavior," there is another way to deal with your situation.