How appropriate for me to see this op-ed piece in the Washington Post in which a lawyer, (now that spells trouble!) who specializes in real estate law, lays out his argument for couples to have leases for weddings.
Since I am getting married in the not too distant future and I also participate in a number of weddings through my calling as a pastor, this drew my attention but not in a good way. For years, when I have counseled couples prior to their weddings, I reminded them that what they were entering into was not a contract but a lifelong commitment and needed to be treated as such. An entirely different mindset must be used to view marriage as a commitment for one’s lifetime. The couple must be committed to working out their differences–whatever they may be–instead of tossing up their hands and giving up when things get tough. Husband and wife must realize that each one will not always get their way; rather, both work together in the spirit of loving compromise based upon what Jesus Christ has done for them.
If marriage is viewed as a contract, or worse yet as a lease, there is little incentive between both parties (see how the terminology even changes) to strive to work together for the common good. Each will want what is best for them, almost guaranteeing the agreement will fail.
It’s no wonder we have such a high divorce rate in the United States. It’s all in how we approach the relationship. I do not intend to approach my marriage as a contractual agreement. It is a union blessed by God for the rest of my life whereby I work to enhance every aspect of my wife’s life to the glory of God.
Try that out (if your married) and see how it works. I’ll bet its better than some smelly old lease …