Lately I have seen quite a few ladies share a post on my Facebook feed titled “23 Things To Do Instead Of Getting Engaged Before You’re 23”, and I must admit the article offended me quite a bit, as well as made me shake my head towards the stupidity of the suggestions. What bothered me most was the fact the ladies who claim to follow Christ were posting it with words plastered above it such as, “truth”, “a must read”, “every single lady must read this!” As I dove into the article I noticed that her entire premise was off base. Yes, the divorce rate among those who marry young is pathetic. Yes, divorce has become a mere “hit it and quit it” excuse for a big day all about the bride. What she fails to understand is that for those of us who have gotten married young (21 for me!), and who claim to follow Christ, divorce has never been apart of our vocabulary. Divorce simply has never been an option, nor will it ever be, and this should be the mentality of ALL believers.
The writer goes on to say that we are not our parents generation nor our grandparents for that matter. But I must ask, they all got married young, pursued careers, defied societal expectations, valued family, and maintained a sense of morality in American culture. Of those things just mentioned, what is so bad? Perhaps if we sought to be more like them our world would be a much better place. I, for one, love the idea of being a young mom, I love the idea of experiencing as much of life as possible with the love of my life, and I love everything about being married. I am not confined to this picket fence, settled down lifestyle; instead I have the freedom to grow alongside the one I love, to build a legacy with him, and see the world through a lovers eyes. What a blessing it is to be married! It is not a ball and chain, and it’s not the imprisonment of everything I ever hoped to be! Sure we don’t have the money to fly all over the world because we own a home, maintain a steady job, and all those other things, but it has by no means kept us from experiencing the best parts of life.
As I read through her list I realized that her suggestions were merely the ramblings of an 18 year old stuck in a 23 year olds body. In essence she wants nothing to do with responsibility. She wants to travel, explore new religions, make out with random people, and focus merely on herself. As a Christian, life can never be so selfish. As a woman after God’s own heart, we are to have a passion for Him and for his people. We are called to serve strangers, not make out with them. We are called to go in order to proclaim Christ’s name, not for our own selfish gain. We are called to view our bodies as a temple, not to fill it with junk and pose naked for the world to see. We are called to honor our parents, not to disappoint them. We are called to love God with all of our heart, soul, mind, and strength, not to fill our minds with false teaching. We are called to be different, not trendy, hipster, prepster or anything -ster. If more Christians chose to be different from the rest of the world, perhaps the divorce rates would be different. Perhaps, we, as believers, would be taken more seriously.
Ladies who call yourselves Christians, do not be fooled by the ramblings of a non-believer. Ultimately, she is lonely and tired of being single as well. If she weren’t she wouldn’t have written such condescending words towards those who are married so young. Sure, in a few years I hope to have a family. I won’t be as thin as I used to be, and I hope to be pregnant. But I will be living in accordance with God’s will for my life. I will have a husband that is only devoted to me, and children whom I will be blessed to nurture and teach. As she states in her article, you are responsible for your own happiness, but what she fails to state is that, as a believer, you are also responsible for following God’s Word and allowing Him to direct your life, not the whims of the world.
All in all, BE DIFFERENT! Go and do what God has called you to do with wild abandonment. Place your trust in HIS plan for your life. Let Him bring that amazing man into your life and show you all He has for you. If He doesn’t have Mr. Right come your way anytime soon, then just pursue intimacy with your Savior, that’s all he wants. As someone who did get married at 21, take it from me, you will never miss out on the beauty of life. Only the best lies ahead!