Thinking out loud while "changing my thinking"

in Him


What’s the purpose of marriage?

For the first time, I am able to understand the “no desire to get married” perspective. So many of my non-Christian friends have expressed this attitude for years and I just never got it. To me, you love each other… clearly want to build a life together… so why not?

What I failed to realize, is that beyond my cultural beliefs… my spiritual/religious beliefs are what truly nurture my views on marriage.

Prior to my salvation, I witnessed what my parents shared, and admired every aspect of it. They fostered a relationship of mutual friendship… knew each other inside out…actively yielded to one another in disagreements, jovially played and had intimate discussions with each other. They were an ideal example and I loved it!

Some early mornings, my brother and I would ease drop at their bedroom door and routinely heard them getting on the same page about any and everything. There was a peace about how they related with one another…it was simply beautiful.

I have no doubt that it took years for them to get to that place. Years of working through trials… years of learning each other and adapting… years for a selfless, unconditional love to develop. But from my 3 decades of observation, I am grateful I have had such a positive example to influence my views.

(Especially after seeing the casualties of the abusive marriage my biological mother endured for 8 years.)

However, my view on marriage got 106 fold enhanced, after coming to know Him.

It is not that I became more unrealistic about what marriage entails. I just saw it through a new set of lenses.

It was no longer just a perfect union of two people… it was a union in God and a powerful expression of His love manifested for us.

Marriage was made for the same purpose we are…for His glory… but what makes it even more amazing, is that in the midst of it…the potential for growth is exponential.

Based on current divorce rates (in the US), it is clear that it takes way more than some puppy love-infatuation-sexual connection-financial security- and wavering happiness to maintain a marriage. The initial giggles and coos from over romanticized fantasies eventually fade to standard daily living. Sometimes physical appearances change… or the act of communicating begins to suffocate rather than liberate.

So what is the purpose?

This was the question posed by a lab mate of mine who is currently in a new relationship. Though culturally, her parents (traditional Chinese) would expect her to tie the knot… she has more “modern” ideologies of how things should go. She believes there is no point… you can live with each other, have sex, enjoy each other for a lifetime or not. Essentially, she sarcastically questioned whether she should do it for tax benefits…and expressed how she sees no purpose in it. In her perspective, if he wants to leave her, she wants him to be able to do so, without feeling obligated…without the messiness of having to separate acquired material goods and finances through a legal system.

It was like, WOW… I get it. There would be no purpose if I did not believe marriage was a deliberate choice to unconditionally love another person… to serve them, regardless of it being reciprocated… to stand faithfully by their side, even if they failed to meet your emotional, physical, or even intellectual needs. There would be no purpose if I did not see it as a testimony of His redemption. So how can I expect “modern” society to view it the same way? I really can’t. Culture, mindsets and beliefs are continuously evolving. So I certainly can’t think that even within a society where people are pushing for same-sex marriage… that “traditionally” accepted marriage between man and woman can’t fade into companionships that either work out for a lifetime or end in a simple break up (though not so simple when years are invested).

Don’t get me wrong. I do believe that levels of maturing can occur within companionships…after all, various close relationships can show our deepest character hiccups as well. But as a Christian, I believe there is something that happens in the spiritual when that union is made. All that being said, I finally understand why some people do not see the purpose of getting married.



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Where does this all end?


As I heard my phone alarm go off, still in a state of daze…I laid there… and all I could say to Him is, “I am tired, I don’t want to get up…”

For most people, this is the norm. This is there natural response to wanting to continue their love affair with sleep. But for me, this was a cry of uncertainty as to whether I can keep going on.

I have always been one to wake up early… (like it or not)…energetic… lively…and a lot of times, really happy and/or joyful!. But this past week and a half especially, has been sheer torture.

I have literally run myself into the ground in every possible way and have reached my limit. The point where the hidden questions and deep thoughts of my heart make it to the forefront of mind like loudspeakers on max.

The Why’s, What’s, Who’s, When’s, … you name it… they are all there.

Clearly, very emotion driven at this point because I am physically worn out… but the good thing about these moments… periods… what I can refer to as “desperation points”.. is that I become all the more convinced of … certain of… why I am in the state I am in… what it’s going to take to get out of this state… who I can truly depend on… and of when (hopefully) and where I can finally find my rest. When I come to these points.. I begin to realise what’s an illusion and what’s real. I begin to see through the “smoke and mirrors” all over again… and the path… the ONLY path becomes more obvious…

Sad to say, but i’m also beginning to realise how true it is that suffering… in whatever form it comes in, seems to plunge us into these points of despair, making us all the more willing to find the source of our hope… our faith… whatever that might look like to the average human being. Some search for it…others return to it…either way, no one can truly do without it…

We are in need…and those needs have to be met.Image