Tuesday, April 5, 2016

Carnally-Minded is Short-Sighted

I meet often with couples who have troubled marriages.  After 17 years, I've noticed a pattern.  Most of those whom I see for serious marital problems, appear to have married their partners more for external reasons (their looks, their possessions, their image, etc.).  They were often not as consistent with spiritual basics as teens and spent more time in worldly pursuits, thus making it more likely they would select their partner based on worldly criteria outlined earlier. This is short-sighted.  They are also more likely to have been involved physically before marriage.  This is not to say beauty is not important but that the degree to which the person has developed self-control, a work ethic, meekness, love, patience, the ability to be a team player, the ability to communicate feelings, etc. are more important.  Those who are closer to the Lord truly (because they are consistent with personal prayer, personal scripture study, serious pondering, etc.) are more likely to select marriage partners with whom they can be compatible long-term.  They are more likely to select a partner with a long-term gospel view in mind.  There can of course always be surprises and even those who select partners for higher reasons will still have challenges but they tend to have less conflict in my experience and tend to maintain healthier marriages.  As I've said before, the gospel works if we understand it correctly and live it consistently.  This does not mean we will be immune from problems; but, overall we will have greater peace even in the midst of trials and lasting joy in the long run.

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