Monday, June 19, 2017

Family Series - #5 - Preparing Kids for Marriage

Introduction:  Stats

  • 89% of adults will marry  (only 9% say don't want to marry)
  • The Average American spends 2/3 of his life in marriage
  • If a person marries, it'll affect every aspect of their life.  (physical, emotional, social, financial, vocational, recreational)
  • If you marry, as a general rule, nothing will have a greater affect on your life (with the exception of salvation)
  • (We know) a good marriage is a source of great pleasure, joy, comfort, satisfaction, happiness!!  (on the other hand, a troubled marriage creates frustration, disappointment, sorrow, pain, etc.)
  • Vast majority say "when I marry I expect it to be for life".
  • 100% say "when I marry I want it to be a success"

Question:  Why are we not more focused on preparing kids for marriage??

Some thoughts on "How to" prepare a child for marriage:

#1.  Be intentional
Needn't be a primary, constant thought, but should be an important goal, should be addressed.  Compare time and effort spent on sports.  Deut. 30:19 - "choose"

#2.  Pray for your child. - James 5:16
       pray specifically
       pray early

#3.  Evangelize your child.  Only the Holy Spirit can call, save, however, you can introduce 

#4.  Disciple your child
Deut. 6:4-9 "Shema" , Eph. 6:4
Note:  satisfaction level within marriage = highest among couples who attend church together!!  Faith matters to marriage!!!

#5.  Focus on Godly Character - (this is more than good character = Godly) 
Mal. 2:15 - a)  Godly character is NOT born, but built hopefully by a Godly couple!!
                  b)  emotional health seeks its own level  Point = Your child's emotional health determines who he/she chooses!!!
Statistics prove that just eating meals together effects the emotional health of children in a hugely positive way.

#6.  Teach practical marriage skills:  ie.  how to handle money, do housework, etc.
One huge complaint after the honeymoon has worn off is "my husband is such a slob"!

#7.  Teach respect for the opposite sex.
Gender competition for kids = natural, but adults???

#8.  Model godly marriage
60% of learning that affects behavior is based on watching someone we know and trust!
"Basic beliefs, behavior are formed by age 13".  Doesn't mean they can't change!  But = must change!!  (takes effort to change - not nearly as difficult if formed correctly from the beginning)
Note:  the greatest predictor of a successful marriage - the successful marriage of the couple's parents".

Summary??  Do you want your kids to have a good marriage???
#1.  WORK on yours!!
#2.  Model that WORK!!! - ie.  caring, sharing, apologizing, compromising, loving, etc.

#9.  Educate yourself - concerning marriage, children, the faith.  Is it important enough to expend effort to get it right???  Then do it!

#10.  Resource your child.  Vast amounts of materials out there.  One example:  Georgia Shaffer's "How not to date a loser".

Note:  Most young people WANT TO Know this stuff!!!   (Will it make a difference???  Are no guarantees!!

Proverbs 14:1

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