A THIRTEEN YEAR OLD girl, whose parents separated when she was five, was asked, “Why don’t you want your mother to get married again?” “I just want mum and dad back together, not married to other people,” she said. Given that her father had married again over four years previously, she must have doubted the realism of her innermost desire.
Yet, she still clung to what seemed an impossible hope.
She got on with both her stepmother and stepfather and was otherwise happy.
What does this say for the innate yearning of children to have their parents together and happy—happily together?
1. Where there’s vision, commitment has motive
Vision is an astounding thing, providing possibility in the mind where all sorts of impossibility may surround.
Vision goes before faith. It motivates two persons, in the midst of marriage, to dig in, despite their differences and unrequited longings. It provides long-term hope, notwithstanding the short term pain of dealing with what seems to be irreconcilable differences.
Where there is vision, commitment has a motive, and where there is commitment, there is hope. And hope fuels faith, which delivers the vision.
2. Where there’s commitment, there’s hope
No marriage can survive without hope. We are all human beings and we all need hope. Everything else could be stripped away, but our hope remains as a testament to our hearts’ longing for contentment within a life that God promises so much through.
Commitment is the arms and legs of faith; the muscles of which are fuelled by this hope. Where two partners remain committed, the marriage could withstand almost anything.
Commitment is the enduring key and the key to endurance.
If, on the other hand, commitment has waned in one or both, the short-term vision of happiness now blocks sight of the longer term vision—a much more important one—an enduring one.
Decades of future regret can be annulled before it arrives by dual commitments to each other made now.
3. What is hope for a parent, is hope for a child
Could there ever be a parent who would want to cause their child harm? No mentally healthy parent could desire that.
Marriages that stay together produce children who are no doubt happier. There is no contending struggle, for want of mum and dad to ‘get back together.’
If a parent can hope for a happy life, one bonded to their marriage partner, the parent provides hope for their child. This hope endures a lifetime, often beyond.
A parent’s longest term and most important project is their children. Nothing can substitute two committed parents, or at least one, and better again if both parents stay together and work together.
Children’s deepest desire is to have their parents stay together. Wherever there is enough vision for a good marriage, and the commitment and character to get there, the children are blessed never more.
© 2013 S. J. Wickham.