9 Two are better than one, because they have a good reward for their labor. 10 For if they fall, the one will lift up his fellow; but woe to him that is alone when he falleth, and hath not another to lift him up. 11 Again, if two lie together, then they have warmth; but how can one be warm [alone]? 12 And if a man prevail against him that is alone, two shall withstand him; and a threefold cord is not quickly broken. Ecclesiastes 4 ASV, The Bible
Commitments are a big deal. I was concerned about commitment right before I married my wife. I really wanted to be with my fiancee. Still a lifelong commitment is a daunting one.
My fiancee and I belonged to the same Christian denomination. Neither of us had close relatives who were divorced. The members of our churches seemed to stay together for life. They all kept their marriage vows – together for better or worse; no other sexual partners; till death do you part. And, they seemed to be okay with their arrangement. That was encouraging.
Our vows were spoken in front of relatives, friends, and church members. We were part of their group; they expected us to keep our vows to each other and to God.
In June, we’ll celebrate 48 years of marriage. We kept our commitment to God and to each other. We stayed with our denomination. We’re still active members of our church. I’m grateful we’ve worked out our differences and accepted each other’s imperfections. We’ve benefited from our arrangement. We have –
1. An agreed upon moral/ethical code. Our moral and ethical code is a time honored one prescribed by our religious group. We have both agreed to abide by it. As a result, we didn’t have to create something new.
2. Emotional security. I don’t have to compete with other men; she doesn’t have to compete with other women. We’re not looking for somebody better.
3. Affection and sex. They’re readily available. We don’t have to hunt for a lover.
4. No worries about sexually transmitted diseases. It’s a closed sexual system.
5. Physical security. Someone’s there if you’re sick, disabled, or just need help with the computer.
6. Good memories. A lifetime of photo’s and memories of being together and being with our children.
7. Secure children. Our children, and grandchildren, are wanted and have security. They don’t have to worry about their family dissolving and their home disappearing. It’s not mom’s place or dad’s place? It’s mom and dad’s place.
8. Energy to put into the community. Security issues, companionship issues, and “where do I belong issues” are resolved. Energy can be directed other places.
9. The support of our church. Our government is less likely to need to take care of us because we have the support of each other and our church.
10. A place to socialize and contribute. The same religion has united us and given us a place, our church community, to socialize and contribute.
I’m glad that I made commitments to my wife, God, and my religious community. My wife and I have benefited and so have our children and the community. Making a clear commitment and keeping the commitment is necessary for the well-being of any venture. Why should building a home and a family be any different? It’s something to think about.