Written by: Morgan Snyder

“Do you know what the leading cause of divorce is?” a student asked me. Before I could answer he said,
“Marriage.” The whole class laughed. It was a good joke and he was not wrong because if you never get
married, it is true that you will never get divorced. He brought a little humor to my classroom that day,
but he also brought to light a viewpoint that a lot of Americans have; many people think that marriage
doesn’t work and isn’t worth the risk.

We have a 50%-ish divorce rate in America. That is grim. It seems like the logical response to that should
be to avoid the thing that falls apart half the time. If it is doomed to fail, why enter into one? There is
something missing with this line of thinking. Think of a marriage like a house. If a house were to fall
down, no one would think that it is the house’s fault that it fell, that one day it just decided, “you know
what? I don’t want to be a house anymore. I think I’m just going to become a pile of bricks and wood
today.” It is not the house’s fault. It is the fault of the builder who should have made plans for the house
to be able to withstand difficulty or the person who lived in the house who should have been
maintaining it. Marriage is the same.

So, the problem with this line of thinking, that we should avoid marriage all together in order to avoid
divorce, is flawed. Because, yes, you will eliminate divorce, but you will also miss out on the benefits of
marriage. If a marriage is healthy, it is not something you want to miss out on.

If we choose to take away marriage all together in order to avoid divorce, we take value away from
those involved. Choosing to give your life to someone in every way except marriage is to say that you
are not worthy of someone committing to you. It devalues both people to say that when things get
difficult, we can just go our separate ways. Marriage has been proven to be good for the people in them,
children, and cultures if they are healthy.

Earlier I stated that “many people think that marriage doesn’t work and isn’t worth the risk.” Instead of
eliminating marriage, what if we did what good builders and architects do? What if we laid plans, took
hours and hours, examining all the details, putting time, effort, money, energy, intentional decisions to
build something that will last because it has a solid foundation and it knows how to withstand turmoil?
Our marriages would have far less risk. Our society would be much better off. Children would thrive in
two parent homes and the people in those marriages would be taken care of and experience the
beautiful intimacy and deep love that can happen between two people who genuinely respect and
choose to care for each other.

Let us cast this vision for ourselves, our country, our world! That we would no longer try to avoid
something because it could fail, but instead invest in it and take care of it so as to eliminate risk and
choose to make our relationships thrive. We are all capable of healthy relationships!

Check out our Go for the Gold curriculum if you want to hear more about how to start a relationship off
with a healthy foundation and make healthy decisions that could lead to a solid marriage!