You! Get Married! Now!

A lot of people took my recent post, Looking For Mr. Right? You’re Missing the Point, Missy, to mean that I’m anti-marriage. But I am most definitely pro-marriage. I’ve been happily married for 27 years. Me being anti-marriage is like Pavarotti being anti-singing. It just wouldn’t make sense. I think everyone should get married. But I also know the only way to find Mr. or Miss Right is to absolutely quit looking for them.

Hey, man. I don’t make up the rules. I just blog about them.

The main reason I think it’s important to get married is the same reason I think it’s important to do virtually every great thing there is to do in life: to Avoid Self-Centeredness. Self-centeredness is the enemy of life. It’s the reason that consciously looking for means never finding Mr. or Miss Right. Because searching for the person you think you need to be happy is still about you. It’s about your needs, your desires, your plans for your future.

No good. Nobody cares. If you’re the center of your life, how interesting can you be? It means you’ve never found anything outside of yourself more important or compelling to you than you. Which can only mean that you don’t know how to love. Which means you wouldn’t make a good mate. Which people sense. Which makes your phone ring less. Which is why I wrote the piece referenced above.

But moving beyond that piece: Stop thinking you need someone else to make you happy; notice  when God delivers into your life that Special Someone; get to know that special someone; and then marry them.

The reason people should get married is because the choices everyone has to make about their life boil down to exactly two: spending it alone, or spending it with another person. (Spending it with a succession of people is just a more dramatic, distracting way of spending it alone.) Spending your life with another person is by far the superior choice, because nothing is more important or fulfilling than to love. Loving other people is why we’re here; it’s easily the greatest, most important thing we’re capable of doing. God is love! Well, loving people in the abstract is lame; it’s like eating an imaginary hamburger. We have to love permanently, consciously, purposefully—in an immediate, everyday, right-there-in-our-face kind of way.

Marriage is the only way to most completely do that. It’s the only Love Mode that’s challenging enough to create and establish within us the process by which we excercise, enhance, and finally make manifest everything that comprises our highest nature.

A married person has learned—and is learning, is always learning—to love in a way that someone who’s never been married can’t begin to imagine.

Marriage is how God allows you to learn how to do the thing that’s nearest and dearest to his own heart, which is to ultimately and finally give yourself over to love.

 

Add to FacebookAdd to DiggAdd to Del.icio.usAdd to StumbleuponAdd to RedditAdd to BlinklistAdd to Ma.gnoliaAdd to TechnoratiAdd to FurlAdd to Newsvine

About John Shore

John Shore (who, fwiw, is straight) is the author of UNFAIR: Christians and the LGBT Question, and three other great books. He is founder of Unfundamentalist Christians (on Facebook here), and executive editor of the Unfundamentalist Christians group blog.  (In total John's two blogs receive some 250,000 views per month.) John is also co-founder of The NALT Christians Project, which was written about by TIME,  The Washington Post, and others. His website is JohnShore.com. You're invited to like John's Facebook page. Don't forget to sign up for his mucho-awesome newsletter. If you shop at Amazon, help support John by entering the site through this link right here--Amazon will then send John 3-4% of the cost of anything you buy before exiting the site again.

 

  • FreetoBe

    I have survived a failed marriage. I gave everything, gave myself “over to love”, as you say. Still didn’t work, because the other person has to *HAS TO* be willing the give him/herself over to love in the same way. Self-centeredness is truly the enemy of life….and to a marriage.

    I would like to add that children add a whole new dimension to love. Who else can you (or should you) love unconditionally (besides your mate), with no thought of return on investment?

    Thank you, John, this one (again) has led me to re-examine my singleness to determine if it is really God’s will or my fear that is keeping me this way. Hmmmm.

  • http://www.sheppardministries.com Greta

    There is a book in our library titled ” Marriage is More than Sex.”

    After 59 years of marriage to the same man, I can attest to the truth of the Title!

    Just before my wedding day a wise lady spoke these words to me: “Remember, dearie, that marriage is merely two imperfect humans trying to get along. ” We have proved her words to be true. Sex is just the dessert….the real meat and potatoes is found in the sameness of an every day, what could be boring, routine When things get worse instead of better, when ill health is more abundant than wellness. That’s the wrong time to think of quitting! Instead, we consider each other in the same caring, unconditional way that God loves us.

    There is a magnatized memo on our Fridge door: Living with others is just as hard for the others!” When either of us feels hard done by, those words remind us to be considerate of the other one.

  • David Barach

    Sure, I believe that you’ve thought this through and that you’re sincere, but I can’t help wondering what you did wrong to piss Cat off enough that you felt the need to write this post. Just tell her you’re sorry and that you love her. This abstract stuff just isn’t going to cut it.

  • http://namesake.wordpress.com Dale

    John – I’ve been married for over 19 years, and you’re absolutely right that it is the greatest combatant to a self-centered mindset. However, I’m also friends with several wonderful people who are single and don’t want to be. Yes, they battle with self-centeredness just as we all do, even if we’re married. If they shouldn’t be married until they’re not self-centered, but marriage is the cure for self-centeredness, which came first, the chicken or the egg? It seems you speak from the convenience of marriage, and say to people who haven’t experienced that gift that in order to get what you have, they’ll need to be better than you were when you got it. Something’s fishy in that.

  • http://namesake.wordpress.com Dale

    John – I’ve been married for over 19 years, and you’re absolutely right that it is the greatest combatant to a self-centered mindset. However, I’m also friends with several wonderful people who are single and don’t want to be. Yes, they battle with self-centeredness just as we all do, even if we’re married. If they shouldn’t be married until they’re not self-centered, but marriage is the cure for self-centeredness, which came first, the chicken or the egg? It seems you speak from the convenience of marriage, and say to people who haven’t experienced that gift that in order to get what you have, they’ll need to be better than you were when you got it. Something’s fishy in that.

  • http://www.johnshore.wordpress.com John Shore

    Free: Thank you for all you've said here. Wonderful comment.

    Greta: We should all listen carefully to everything you have to say on any of this. Experience in these matters is everyting. Thanks for sharing your wisdom with us.

    David: Do I know you?

    Dale: Wow. I've never been accused of writing anything FISHY before. One thing I can say is that when I met my wife, I was a LONG way from looking for anyone. I loved living and being alone; I had honestly and happily planned to live my life alone. When I say I loved being alone, I mean I thrilled to it. I couldn't imagine myself every preferring to in any sort of permanent way be with anyone else.

  • http://tasithoughts.wordpress.com tasithoughts

    I enjoyed your thoughts on this matter. You made some very good comments.

  • http://tasithoughts.wordpress.com tasithoughts

    I enjoyed your thoughts on this matter. You made some very good comments.

  • http://www.marriedhelp.net Andy Corp

    Great thoughts about marriage. Been married my self for 21 years… it definitely is about living for the other person.

  • http://www.marriedhelp.net Andy Corp

    Great thoughts about marriage. Been married my self for 21 years… it definitely is about living for the other person.

  • http://andychristensen.wordpress.com Andy Christensen

    This and the previous post, and all the comments, are very thought provoking.

    Great point, John, that marriage (properly approached as in Ephesians 5) pushes one away from self-centeredness. Not that I would know, being single, but it seems, just thinking about it, like marriage is a huge commitment of oneself to another.

    I think we were created to be in relationships. The one with God is the most important. The main reason we were created is to worship God.

    Also the relationships with other people are important, and not just marriages. It is not good for us to be alone. That doesn't mean we all have to be married. There are all kinds of relationships we can be in. The main thing is to not be self-centered. Paul made it clear that marriage is not a be-all end-all (1 Co. 7). But marriage is a wonderful institution and gift from God. And it sounds like the single biggest test of our Christian practice that there is. Those who have been happily married for many years have my respect and admiration.

  • http://andychristensen.wordpress.com Andy Christensen

    This and the previous post, and all the comments, are very thought provoking.

    Great point, John, that marriage (properly approached as in Ephesians 5) pushes one away from self-centeredness. Not that I would know, being single, but it seems, just thinking about it, like marriage is a huge commitment of oneself to another.

    I think we were created to be in relationships. The one with God is the most important. The main reason we were created is to worship God.

    Also the relationships with other people are important, and not just marriages. It is not good for us to be alone. That doesn't mean we all have to be married. There are all kinds of relationships we can be in. The main thing is to not be self-centered. Paul made it clear that marriage is not a be-all end-all (1 Co. 7). But marriage is a wonderful institution and gift from God. And it sounds like the single biggest test of our Christian practice that there is. Those who have been happily married for many years have my respect and admiration.

  • http://www.dowlenllc.com Callie

    Hi John, I have been married twice. The first was horrible, a marriage I never should have been in anyway. Now I'm blessed to be in a marriage where my husband and I were brought together by God. The difference is night and day. There's just no comparison. When someone gets married because they think they have to, or to escape from something else, it's rarely going to work and more than likely there is going to be heartache along the way. But when the union is of God, it's an awesome thing. You're so right, someone else can't make you happy. We are to find our joy through Christ. Love Him first, others second, ourselves last, and everything falls into place. God Bless! http://www.calliesblog.com

  • http://www.dowlenllc.com Callie

    Hi John, I have been married twice. The first was horrible, a marriage I never should have been in anyway. Now I'm blessed to be in a marriage where my husband and I were brought together by God. The difference is night and day. There's just no comparison. When someone gets married because they think they have to, or to escape from something else, it's rarely going to work and more than likely there is going to be heartache along the way. But when the union is of God, it's an awesome thing. You're so right, someone else can't make you happy. We are to find our joy through Christ. Love Him first, others second, ourselves last, and everything falls into place. God Bless! http://www.calliesblog.com

  • http://www.johnshore.wordpress.com John Shore

    Wow. Terrifically thoughtful and insightful stuff from all of you. I learn so much from reading these sorts of sharing. Thanks to each of you for being kind enough to share your ideas and experiences. THANK YOU!!

  • Lakisha

    Good morning Mr. Shore:

    I would just like to say thank you for both articles you posted. They are an eye opener for me. I am a single 30 yr old mother of a nine yr old son; waiting to be married. However, I know God is not finished with me b/c I'm enjoying my space wtih me and my son so much; sometimes it scares me. Yes I desire to be married, but I know I have to allow God prepare me for the married life. I don't desire to get married to get divorced. Sometimes, I feel like I am too self-centered. B/c of my dependance on other people or things, I am liking the fact I can trust God to supply all that I need.

    I really appreciate you being honest with your writing and it being clear to understand the whole purpose of marriage. Thank you.

  • Lakisha

    Because I use to depend on others for what I needed, I am loving the fact I trust God to supply for me everything He know I need.

  • delainrj7

    Hello again

    Ok so you are not anti-marriage. Great. But everyone is different in personality and the "rules" that worked for you may not work for everyone. I waited and was "content" being single for years and years. Also got strung along by selfish commitment-phobic men and wasted years of my life being the quiet, nonaggressive unassuming female waiting for the male significant other to "get it" and one day decide that he wanted to move the relationship to the next level…only to have my heart broken time and time again. It was not until I was in my late 30s and decided to become more proactive in my search (yes I said search) and stopped wasting time with guys who were not marriage minded (which I ususally knew by the first or second date) that I met my husband. We were both honest and up front with each other about our intentions since we were both older and did not believe in playing head games. We did not rush into anything and dated for a year and half before getting engaged. We have been married for almost 5 years now and have a 1year old son. I will never regret my decision to quit being passive and become proactive in searching for a mate. We prepare for everything else worthwhile in life. You practice driving and study the manual to get your drivers license, some go to college to prepare for a career and you send out resumes to find the right job. Why should we be passive in searching for a mate? I am not talking about beating every bush to find a man or woman but keeping ones eyes open, proactively getting to know people of the opposite sex, and making your intentions known before getting too far into a dating relationship and investing valuable time, money, and emotion. We search out, invest time and effort into everything else that is worthwhile. It is easy to tell singles to quit looking when one married relatively young and has been out of the "race" for 27 years. Plus, I found that I did not have to be perfect to get married. We are all self centered in our fallen state and are a work in progress in the potter's hand. If I had to wait until I was perfect and totally unselfish, I would have never married.

  • Debra Frost

    Thanks, John, for the reminder that it's all about others! And love.

    I've been happily married for 13 years but after having 5 children (one of whom was stillborn) in that time, we are beginning to feel the effects about spending so much time, money and effort "loving" the kids. Over the last few months I have felt increasingly drained and trapped, as if my batteries are about to run out. Having moved towns and church 18 months ago we haven't made any friends since moving, in spite of having MANY families and couples over for Sunday lunch. I have begun to question how the essence of God can be love. Recently I met someone (20 years older) who is not Christian and whilst trying to "extend" christian love and interest to him (he is very disillusioned by "religion" and the "church") I discovered that being with him seemed to "recharge" my batteries.

    I felt disciplined, reading your post, realising that perhaps I have let this become ABOUT ME. My question to you is, how will I find the love of God again? I have cried out to Him for 18 months now, am totally friendless since moving and have felt suicidal this week. I realise the fault in expecting to see God's love in imperfect people in the church. I feel altogether abandoned by God…

  • Lakisha

    Mrs. Debra:

    I know you intended for Mr. Shore to respond but I felt a need to reply immediately. God said He will never leave you or forsake you. That He's never seen the righteous forsaken nor His seed begging bread. Sometimes, we fell overwhelmed with the trials of life and don't know where God is or if He is even there. Mrs. Debra, He is always there. And that put us in the perfect place for God to show up in your life. Noone else can get His Glory. Practice make perfect with anything you do even in your spiritual growth. Don't give up on God b/c He will never give up on you. Salvation is a choice of life or death. You have to choose whether you'll receive eternal life by letting the trials of life through Christ shape and mold you and grow closer to Jesus; or will you choose death. Psalm 91:1 HE THAT DWELLETH IN THE SECRET PLACE OF THE MOST HIGH SHALL ABIDE UNDER THE SHADOW OF THE ALMIGHTY. ROMANS 8:1 THERE IS THEREFORE NOW NO CONDEMNATION TO THEM WHICH ARE IN CHRIST JESUS, WHO WALK NOT AFTER THE FLESH, BUT AFTER THE SPIRIT.

    TO HELP IN YOUR RESTORATION PROCESS, AND IT IS A PROCESS (PRACTICE MAKE PERFECT) READ PSALM 42. JUST LIKE YOU CAN POST TO THIS BLOG, TELL GOD DIRECTLY, BE HONEST WITH HIM SPECIFICALLY TO REST IN HIS CARE. FORGIVE YOURSELF, ACCEPT GOD'S FORGIVENESS AND BELIEVE THAT YOU ARE HEALED AND MADE WHOLE IN JESUS' NAME.

    HAVE A VERY BEAUTIFUL DAY!!!

  • Lakisha

    Mrs. Debra:

    I know you intended for Mr. Shore to respond but I felt a need to reply immediately. God said He will never leave you or forsake you. That He's never seen the righteous forsaken nor His seed begging bread. Sometimes, we fell overwhelmed with the trials of life and don't know where God is or if He is even there. Mrs. Debra, He is always there. And that put us in the perfect place for God to show up in your life. Noone else can get His Glory. Practice make perfect with anything you do even in your spiritual growth. Don't give up on God b/c He will never give up on you. Salvation is a choice of life or death. You have to choose whether you'll receive eternal life by letting the trials of life through Christ shape and mold you and grow closer to Jesus; or will you choose death. Psalm 91:1 HE THAT DWELLETH IN THE SECRET PLACE OF THE MOST HIGH SHALL ABIDE UNDER THE SHADOW OF THE ALMIGHTY. ROMANS 8:1 THERE IS THEREFORE NOW NO CONDEMNATION TO THEM WHICH ARE IN CHRIST JESUS, WHO WALK NOT AFTER THE FLESH, BUT AFTER THE SPIRIT.

    TO HELP IN YOUR RESTORATION PROCESS, AND IT IS A PROCESS (PRACTICE MAKE PERFECT) READ PSALM 42. JUST LIKE YOU CAN POST TO THIS BLOG, TELL GOD DIRECTLY, BE HONEST WITH HIM SPECIFICALLY TO REST IN HIS CARE. FORGIVE YOURSELF, ACCEPT GOD'S FORGIVENESS AND BELIEVE THAT YOU ARE HEALED AND MADE WHOLE IN JESUS' NAME.

    HAVE A VERY BEAUTIFUL DAY!!!

  • Brad

    Dear John, you say that, "A married person has learned—and is learning, is always learning—to love in a way that someone who's never been married can't begin to imagine." I want to tell you, quite frankly I might add, that you are wrong. Your personal experience doesn't warrant such a sweeping, confining, restrictive, and offensive statement. Moreover, it can be taken as very narrow-minded, subjective, and even arrogant. Why? Let me explain….

    Any born-again believer has entered into the greatest covenant of love this world will ever see or know. That in itself is a sufficient rebuke to your postulations, however I will continue.

    To tell us so boldly that those who are not married or haven't married can't even begin to imagine the love a married person knows, or can know, is not Biblical in any sense, and in fact I find it grievous and misguided, if not misguiding, and I speak for both the soul and the spirit of man. The depths of love a person can experience with Christ is so beyond even our comprehension, that to limit such true knowing or learning to those who've found marriage (with a woman or man) is simply wrong. I am grieved for you that you think this and grieved that so many will read this and may accept it without knowing any differently.

    I pray you would not limit the issue of "love" to your personal experience and what you've discovered through your marriage. Love is worked out in all of us daily, through every kind of relationship– if, that is, we walk in love. Do you walk in love towards everyone, and not just in your marriage? Does your love for Christ transcend your love for your wife? While I'm sure marriage could be wonderful and a place of refining for the Lord in our lives, and I would be glad to find someone to share special intimate love, you seem to falsely assume those whom are single are selfish, even to the worst degree. So, please read your article objectively and listen to yourself. Can you see how limited your perspective is or how offensive you may be coming off to people who don't hold your experience?

    And what of Paul's exhortation? Did he not tell us it is good to remain single (1 Cor 7:8)? If marriage is such the crucible for love, the real love I speak of, perhaps not the love you are referring to, then why did God not marry Jesus off at a young age to let him grow in these depths of understanding and learning you speak of?

    Please re-examine the limitations you've set forth for everyone in your article. I pray you will see and understand what I'm saying.

    God is love. To know God is to know love. Marriage to another person is not necessary to plumb even the greatest depths of love.

    To God be the glory!

    Best wishes,

    Brad

  • Brad

    Dear John, you say that, "A married person has learned—and is learning, is always learning—to love in a way that someone who's never been married can't begin to imagine." I want to tell you, quite frankly I might add, that you are wrong. Your personal experience doesn't warrant such a sweeping, confining, restrictive, and offensive statement. Moreover, it can be taken as very narrow-minded, subjective, and even arrogant. Why? Let me explain….

    Any born-again believer has entered into the greatest covenant of love this world will ever see or know. That in itself is a sufficient rebuke to your postulations, however I will continue.

    To tell us so boldly that those who are not married or haven't married can't even begin to imagine the love a married person knows, or can know, is not Biblical in any sense, and in fact I find it grievous and misguided, if not misguiding, and I speak for both the soul and the spirit of man. The depths of love a person can experience with Christ is so beyond even our comprehension, that to limit such true knowing or learning to those who've found marriage (with a woman or man) is simply wrong. I am grieved for you that you think this and grieved that so many will read this and may accept it without knowing any differently.

    I pray you would not limit the issue of "love" to your personal experience and what you've discovered through your marriage. Love is worked out in all of us daily, through every kind of relationship– if, that is, we walk in love. Do you walk in love towards everyone, and not just in your marriage? Does your love for Christ transcend your love for your wife? While I'm sure marriage could be wonderful and a place of refining for the Lord in our lives, and I would be glad to find someone to share special intimate love, you seem to falsely assume those whom are single are selfish, even to the worst degree. So, please read your article objectively and listen to yourself. Can you see how limited your perspective is or how offensive you may be coming off to people who don't hold your experience?

    And what of Paul's exhortation? Did he not tell us it is good to remain single (1 Cor 7:8)? If marriage is such the crucible for love, the real love I speak of, perhaps not the love you are referring to, then why did God not marry Jesus off at a young age to let him grow in these depths of understanding and learning you speak of?

    Please re-examine the limitations you've set forth for everyone in your article. I pray you will see and understand what I'm saying.

    God is love. To know God is to know love. Marriage to another person is not necessary to plumb even the greatest depths of love.

    To God be the glory!

    Best wishes,

    Brad

  • http://andychristensen.wordpress.com Andy Christensen

    Debra,

    Please allow me to offer one small piece of unsolicited advice. Don't give up. You are not alone, because He has your life in His hands, and because (and I'm not claiming to know you or exactly what you are feeling) there are many brothers and sisters in Christ who have struggled with having their expectations of people being let-down, with discouragement or with feelings of being spiritually off-track. Don't stop taking in His Word, believing it, and praying to Him. You seem to know that the love we need can only come from Him, that we cannot give anything to others until He supplies it to us. Sometimes we may just have to wait for it.

    "'Blessed are those who hunger and thirst for righteousness, for they will be filled.'" (Matthew 5:6)

    "Then Jesus said to his disciples, 'If anyone would come after me, he must deny himself and take up his cross and follow me. For whoever wants to save his life will lose it, but whoever loses his life for me will find it.'" (Matthew 16:24-25)

    "He took Peter, James and John along with him, and he began to be deeply distressed and troubled. 'My soul is overwhelmed with sorrow to the point of death,' he said to them…" (Mark 14:33-34)

    "He said to them, 'It is not for you to know the times or dates the Father has set by his own authority. But you will receive power when the Holy Spirit comes on you; and you will be my witnesses in Jerusalem, and in all Judea and Samaria, and to the ends of the earth." (Acts 1:7-8)

    Romans 8:18-30

  • http://andychristensen.wordpress.com Andy Christensen

    Debra,

    Please allow me to offer one small piece of unsolicited advice. Don't give up. You are not alone, because He has your life in His hands, and because (and I'm not claiming to know you or exactly what you are feeling) there are many brothers and sisters in Christ who have struggled with having their expectations of people being let-down, with discouragement or with feelings of being spiritually off-track. Don't stop taking in His Word, believing it, and praying to Him. You seem to know that the love we need can only come from Him, that we cannot give anything to others until He supplies it to us. Sometimes we may just have to wait for it.

    "'Blessed are those who hunger and thirst for righteousness, for they will be filled.'" (Matthew 5:6)

    "Then Jesus said to his disciples, 'If anyone would come after me, he must deny himself and take up his cross and follow me. For whoever wants to save his life will lose it, but whoever loses his life for me will find it.'" (Matthew 16:24-25)

    "He took Peter, James and John along with him, and he began to be deeply distressed and troubled. 'My soul is overwhelmed with sorrow to the point of death,' he said to them…" (Mark 14:33-34)

    "He said to them, 'It is not for you to know the times or dates the Father has set by his own authority. But you will receive power when the Holy Spirit comes on you; and you will be my witnesses in Jerusalem, and in all Judea and Samaria, and to the ends of the earth." (Acts 1:7-8)

    Romans 8:18-30

  • http://andychristensen.wordpress.com Andy Christensen

    That was Acts chapter One versus seven and eight. :)

  • http://andychristensen.wordpress.com Andy Christensen

    That was Acts chapter One versus seven and eight. :)

  • http://www.johnshore.wordpress.com John Shore

    Debra: The line about you feeling suicidal is of course deeply concerning. Have you shared that with your husband–or, for that matter, your new friend? Or with anyone?

  • http://www.johnshore.wordpress.com John Shore

    Debra: The line about you feeling suicidal is of course deeply concerning. Have you shared that with your husband–or, for that matter, your new friend? Or with anyone?

  • http://www.johnshore.wordpress.com John Shore

    Brad: All very well said. All I really meant is that marriage forces you to … well, just what I said. It's a categorically different KIND of love than a Christian's love for Christ. In a LOT of ways that I think a lot of Christians would do well to acknowledge, Christ DOES remain abstract. That, of course, is so much different than, say, a wife or husband who is suddenly lashing out at you moments before their or your mom or dad arrives for a week-long visit, or who … I don't know … keeps screaming at you about how you don't really love them. You know: REAL stuff, in real time, with a real person you have to really, physically, verbally interact with.

    It's just different, is all. And it's nothing you can truly comprehend until you've been through it, same as with anything very intense that takes, say, ten years to experience or live through. I've never been at war, so it's a given that while I can IMAGINE I'd know what it's like, I can't really and truly know. That's all. No biggy.

  • http://www.johnshore.wordpress.com John Shore

    Brad: All very well said. All I really meant is that marriage forces you to … well, just what I said. It's a categorically different KIND of love than a Christian's love for Christ. In a LOT of ways that I think a lot of Christians would do well to acknowledge, Christ DOES remain abstract. That, of course, is so much different than, say, a wife or husband who is suddenly lashing out at you moments before their or your mom or dad arrives for a week-long visit, or who … I don't know … keeps screaming at you about how you don't really love them. You know: REAL stuff, in real time, with a real person you have to really, physically, verbally interact with.

    It's just different, is all. And it's nothing you can truly comprehend until you've been through it, same as with anything very intense that takes, say, ten years to experience or live through. I've never been at war, so it's a given that while I can IMAGINE I'd know what it's like, I can't really and truly know. That's all. No biggy.

  • Brad

    Thanks. I don't mean to come off as a prig or curmudgeon, although I'm sure people would take me that way at times, given my forthrightness, but I'd like to add that it's possible I misunderstood what you were saying regarding a "way to love"…although even in that case I'm at odds with you, because being in loving relationships with others (including the Almighty) definitely puts a person through the ringer, as I'm sure a marriage does. Ahh, such is life…one big ringer. Peace. Brad

  • Brad

    Thanks. I don't mean to come off as a prig or curmudgeon, although I'm sure people would take me that way at times, given my forthrightness, but I'd like to add that it's possible I misunderstood what you were saying regarding a "way to love"…although even in that case I'm at odds with you, because being in loving relationships with others (including the Almighty) definitely puts a person through the ringer, as I'm sure a marriage does. Ahh, such is life…one big ringer. Peace. Brad

  • Allen

    John,

    Great article on the nature of marriage from the inside. I will test the welcome of your readers by adding that, as a gay Christian (a what?!?) who was recently married (was recently what?!?!) during the period when this was legal here in California, I agree entirely with your remarks. I would add for the record that not all couples are allowed to marry, but that doesn't mean they are not learning God's best lesson with each other. My husband and I have been together for 18 years, we didn't just start loving each other when we got married last August .

    I agree, too, with others here that marriage is not the only way to express love of others — Mother Teresa comes immediately to mind as an example. Parenting, grandparenting, unlcing and aunting, even neighboring are all important ways to grow in love. And obviously the word "marriage" is not some kind of magic spell that improves everyone, every time. I know you weren't presenting marriage as a one-size-fits-all solution. It was a great meditation on the nature of marriage, all the same!

    • http://www.johnshore.wordpress.com John Shore

      Allen: Fear not (and I know you don't, cuz you're Just That Awesome); this blog's blessed with gay readers (and their pals) a'plenty. And thank you so much for these kind words on my piece. Lovely of you.

  • Joy

    John you’re so interesting to read! :0)

    re-Brad’s point, I get his point and yours I think…

    I think I’d add…

    ‘being single can afford a person the opportunity/freedom to develop and keep deep, beautiful (pure) friendships with people of the opposite sex that you married people could barely begin to imagine…’.

    Life is about learning to Love – and God will teach us one way or another eh!

    • http://www.johnshore.wordpress.com John Shore

      Joy: Very nice! Thank you!

  • Joy

    John you’re so interesting to read! :0)

    re-Brad’s point, I get his point and yours I think…

    I think I’d add…

    ‘being single can afford a person the opportunity/freedom to develop and keep deep, beautiful (pure) friendships with people of the opposite sex that you married people could barely begin to imagine…’.

    Life is about learning to Love – and God will teach us one way or another eh!

    • http://www.johnshore.wordpress.com John Shore

      Joy: Very nice! Thank you!

  • http://www.johnshore.wordpress.com John Shore

    Allen: Fear not (and I know you don't, cuz you're Just That Awesome); this blog's blessed with gay readers (and their pals) a'plenty. And thank you so much for these kind words on my piece. Lovely of you.


CLOSE | X

HIDE | X