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March 16, 2016


45:19 "It's part of being a human before God is getting married and having kids."

Wow, this sounds as though it's just a simple choice to get married. You can't get married if no one wants you/doesn't ask.

It's hard enough to be alone, especially when you're older and know you will never have kids. But to hear that those of us who are alone are also somehow failing before God is unbearably painful.

Some of us are alone and childless not by choice. Some of us would give our very lives to change this fact and no longer be alone.

I feel the same way, Mo. I did not know I wasn't "fully human before God." I was surprised to hear this and very sad. It is hard for me to think that I may never find somebody, since I have always wanted to get married someday, but it is even worse to think I may be disappointing God by not having found someone at my age and frankly I don't even know if I could have children because of health conditions. This isn't what I read in the Bible, yet sometimes I get the impression I am a failure of a Christian and incomplete because I'm not married. I guess I can't add much to your comment other than that I understand.

Mo and Jennifer, I don't think you heard the comments the way they were meant. Getting married and having kids is part of being human (i.e., it's an aspect of humanity that has played a central role in human societies throughout time, it was created by God to teach about the union of Christ and His church, contribute to our sanctification, etc.)—created by God for our good and His glory, but it doesn't follow that if one does not take part in those things that one is not fully human, nor does it follow that one has failed God if one doesn't marry and have children (only if one despises those things do I think one fails). God calls some to one thing, some to another. I understand the pain of not taking part in these things (believe me), but that doesn't mean I ought to minimize the role they play in humanity.

The problem in our culture today is that it does minimize the value of marriage and children. That is the error that was being addressed on the show. In a time when culture devalues marriage and children, that is the time when the church ought to speak of their great value as creations of God. This is the time we are in.

Am I grieved that I'm not taking part in these things? Absolutely. It is likely that Jesus also grieved over not having these things, so we're in good company there. But these things, great as they are, are merely shadows symbolizing what's to come for us as Christians—i.e, our union with Christ in the resurrection, being united to Him forever and enjoying our place in His body of believers. True, we don't have the shadow (marriage and children) now, but we will one day have the reality. And that will be much, much better than any shadow that points to that reality in this life.

But even though it makes us sad, let's honor that shadow now, not deny or denigrate it (our grief for not having it likewise honors it because our longing for it testifies of its goodness and beauty), knowing that the complete fulfillment of it will eventually be experienced by us. We know better than most what it means to long for its fulfillment, and that understanding of longing is something we can contribute to the body of Christ, as we should all be longing for its fulfillment rather than being content with the shadow.

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