Monday, January 30, 2012


Recently a couple of friends have started on the road to divorce. Seeing these marriages fail got me to thinking about why our marriage is still going strong, probably stronger than it 6-7 years ago (we have been married 9.5 years). Have we just been lucky?

I think the answer is that we have been blessed by God without some of the problems some families face. But, I also think we have done some things that have helped us maintain a strong marriage.

First, we both were believers when we got married. Neither of us were super strong in our faith, but both of us had the desire to grow. This is important because the Bible says:
Be ye not unequally yoked together with unbelievers: for what fellowship hath righteousness with unrighteousness? and what communion hath light with darkness? And what concord hath Christ with Belial? or what part hath he that believeth with an infidel? And what agreement hath the temple of God with idols? for ye are the temple of the living God; as God hath said, I will dwell in them, and walk in them; and I will be their God, and they shall be my people. Wherefore come out from among them, and be ye separate, saith the Lord, and touch not the unclean thing; and I will receive you. And will be a Father unto you, and ye shall be my sons and daughters, saith the Lord Almighty.
2 Corinthians 6:14-18

Second, we have learned to follow the roles God laid out. To an unbeliever, being a submissive wife might seem demeaning or "un-feminist." But, as a believer, I have found this to be very rewarding and not in the least bit demeaning. It first takes learning to submit to God. This I learned the best when I was pregnant with AJU5. Her pregnancy wasn't our plan at the time. I wanted to work full time longer (i had only been full time for a year). We were looking for a new house. We had plans. But, God had a better plan. I learned to submit to that over time. It took until Week 18 of that pregnancy to start submitting really, but I did. Putting our future in His hands made everything so much simpler. There had been times in the past we have put things in His hands - my husband's job during his senior year of college, finding our first home, etc. But, this one was the first time that I really had to submit and I couldn't do anything else. My husband had to learn to love me as Christ loves the church as well. To a woman, this seems easy. As women, it is easy to love. But, for men it is a lot harder. He has learned to nurture me. He has learned to support me when I need it. He has learned when to back off for a few minutes and let me settle down. Are either of us perfect in this? No. There are times I don't want to submit to him and rebel. There are times he isn't very loving. But, most of the time when we start to get close to a fight, I think both of us remember these verses:
Wives, submit yourselves unto your own husbands, as unto the Lord. For the husband is the head of the wife, even as Christ is the head of the church: and he is the saviour of the body. Therefore as the church is subject unto Christ, so let the wives be to their own husbands in every thing. Husbands, love your wives, even as Christ also loved the church, and gave himself for it; That he might sanctify and cleanse it with the washing of water by the word, That he might present it to himself a glorious church, not having spot, or wrinkle, or any such thing; but that it should be holy and without blemish. So ought men to love their wives as their own bodies. He that loveth his wife loveth himself. For no man ever yet hated his own flesh; but nourisheth and cherisheth it, even as the Lord the church: For we are members of his body, of his flesh, and of his bones. For this cause shall a man leave his father and mother, and shall be joined unto his wife, and they two shall be one flesh. This is a great mystery: but I speak concerning Christ and the church. Nevertheless let every one of you in particular so love his wife even as himself; and the wife see that she reverence her husband.
Ephesians 5:22-33

Finally, we spend time together. We are home 6 nights a week. The night we aren't together we are spending time studying and learning about God. We probably should go to evening services at church more (there are two other nights during the week we could go), but since the end of AJU7's pregnancy it hasn't been easy. There isn't a kids' program those nights, so we are always distracted by them. And it runs right up to if not past their current bed time (7:30). But, those are excuses... Back to spending time together. We aren't going different directions every night of the week. We spend time as a family and as a couple, even though we don't go on dates. Most nights after the kids are in bed we do something together (normally watching TV for about 45 minutes). But, we also have played games, etc. I think this helps our marriage a lot because we have a chance to grow together both as a family and as a couple.

So, there it is. I count it a blessing we haven't had any big fights in about 5 years. We have had small ones, but we used to have a lot more fights for sure...

Wednesday, January 4, 2012

Birth Control, Politics,etc

I recently saw this post, and it got me thinking. I have recently been looking a little closer at how most contraceptives work, and well, I am not happy with what I am finding.

So, in the beginning, the "pill" was meant to prevent ovulation and conception. Personally, I have no problems with contraceptives that are designed like this. But, it turns out that the "pill" was not effective enough. The hormones didn't work for everyone, so they decided to change it. Now, the "pills" also affect the uterine wall, which prevents implantation OR promotes a very early miscarriage. This is were most Christians (including myself) have problems. I believe life begins at conception. I don't want to add something to my body that will promote the loss of life. I know it happens naturally sometimes, but that doesn't mean I want it to happen artificially. Some might take the stand that preventing implantation is okay (often the medical definition of life begins at implantation), but what the "pill" does now even would be a loss of life to those people. This goes for the mini pill too! Oh, and the IUD. And the patch, and well, pretty much all non-barrier contraceptives...

So, now to Santorum's point. I am not completely up on politics. I live in a state with a later primary, so I am waiting until things "thin out" to look too closely. But, I wonder if SOME of his point is that this should be a state issue - not a federal issue. Our federal government has definitely overstepped its rights recently. If you look at the rolls of the federal government, many of the things our current government handles it shouldn't. The states have a lot less power than our founding fathers planned/desired/wanted.

Now, with that being said, do I think all contraceptives should be outlawed? No. I personally have 0 problem with the barrier options. Condoms, etc I don't think should ever be outlawed. But, I think those methods of birth control that do increase the likelihood of an early miscarriage should, at the VERY LEAST, be only offered once how they work is fully explained. People need to know that it isn't that much different than the morning after pill.

Now for those that say without contraceptives women are going to have a ton of babies are also wrong. There are also natural ways to control when you get pregnant. NFP, etc are almost as affective when you have regular cycles. Now there are devices to help even those with irregular cycles determine when they are fertile, which means a form of NFP can be used (I don't know if they are available in the US just yet, but one article I read said they are in Europe and the FDA is working on approving them here). But, it means women have to do a little more than taking a pill a day, which I guess some people don't want. But, if it was the only option, I bet most would use it! Add in the barrier options, and I bet our birth rates wouldn't change much. I would venture to bet that the abortion rate (assuming it was still legal) would even drop because women would be more aware of their bodies, etc...