Sometimes the world has to admit that God knows what He's talking about when He gives guidance about how to live. I'll bet they hate it, too: the Christians being proved right. But it's happened again. Yesterday in Australia a major researcher, Professor of Law at Sydney University, announced that a decline in marriage is to blame for increasing neglect of, and suffering among, young people. One of the subtitles read: "Growing rates of abuse are rooted in the rise of one-parent families." In essence, the assertion is made that 'the well-being of Australian children and young people has declined alarmingly in the past decade, and plunging marriage rates are partly to blame.' I kept the article as a collectible. It's overdue news. Child abuse, neglect, self-harm including hospital admissions are caused by the increase in numbers of one-parent families, de facto couples. violent and unstable relationships and divorce. A critical number of young people have lived without both parents and/or been through family divorce by the time they're fifteen years old and it's hurting them. The researcher has national standing, and can't be dismissed by people who don't want to accept the findings. Patrick Parkinson calls for a review of government policies, to ensure marriage is not undermined - which I reckon it has been by the increasing economic and social pressure for both parents to work, and the general attituded that marriage in only a middle class convention rather than a thing that exists out of human need. The quote is made, "Governments cannot ignore the reality that two parents tend to provide better outcomes for children than one,and the most stable, safe and nurturing environment for childre is when their parents are, and remain, married to one another."
So who thought they could reinvent it all? Who were the social pioneers who thought women could and should be single parents, or same-sex couples could do the same thing as naturan heterosexual couples? Who thought divorce was perfectly okay,and families could exist in all sorts of patterns? I've heard the remark made that in Australia families get less government support than they do in some European nations. Political correctness and left-wing social pioneering attacked conventional marriage and tried to reinvent it all, and the result was hurt and damaged children and youth.
Of course marriage has to work, and for that to happen, people need to get away from the idea that their personal fulfillment comes first, they are the centre of their own universe. Have we lost the sense of living for others, and made life all about our own preferences? It takes a certain amount of unselfishness to make a relationship work, and people are busy complaining that life is not what they want. They aren't getting things their own way enough.Then because people can't get a relationship work on their own terms they end it, and insist they're doing nothing wrong.Jesus said, Whoever loves their life will lose it, but whoever gives their life up for His sake will find it. Life is best lived for others, not purely for oneself, and if you're going to have children accept that you can't have your own way all the time. I have had to remember that myself, as a parent of five, who had to make a conscious effort not to be selfish sometimes.
Returning to the point, God set things up to work a certain way. Man and Woman together make children and raise them together.
One single female parent I heard said she didn't want to share the parenting of children with a partner so she set out to be a single parent. Dare anyone call that selfish? We're supposed to applaud her for bravery, or something. But it turns out she's not clever, and we're seeing the results of that departure from God's way.
Come again, Lord Jesus.