FEATURE ARTICLE

Friday, March 29, 2019
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CHECKING THE INCREASING RATE OF DIVORCE IN OUR SOCIETY

Royal divorce: Ooni of Ife and Olori Wuraola

oday, the ultimate aim of the Almighty God in instituting marriage seems defeated as marriages are crashing by the seconds across the globe. God had instituted marriage for the purposes of perpetuity and procreation. But the reverse is the case.

According to a projection, the number of family breakups doubled between 1970 and 1980.Though the rate slowed during 1980, the projection predicts that if the rate of divorce does not abate in the coming years, permanent marriages will soon drop to below 50 percent of the population.

The trend has changed from increase in the divorce of those married for more than twenty years in the 1970s to the dissolution of marriages even few months after contracting them. In fact before now, it was assumed that if a couple made it through two decades, the marriage was sealed for life.

Analysts and different schools of thoughts have attributed the alarming increase in marriage breakups to several factors. It is argued that the hyper improvement in technology has foisted several adjustments on the lives of couples. Couples who were initially compatible in several ways have now drifted apart. These include the introduction of mobile gadgets which has ridiculous facilitated promiscuity among couples as a result of easy access to vital information.

Besides, harsh economic situations have hit most families below the belt stretching the patience of most vulnerable wives to unprecedented limits. Now, the vow" for better, for worse" is now a story for the birds .When these wives could no longer bear the excruciating pains of the stings from the harsh economic conditions, they seek for greener pastures. In this vein, men are not spared as the harsh economic situations have turned them to gold diggers. In their gold digging adventures, they may dig deep into the gold mines of some easy virtue women and become trapped forever.

Most times, childlessness which exerts much pressure from the relatives of the couples may lead to marriage breakup if the couple fails to demonstrate intense maturity and absorb the pressure.

Ordinarily, the church could have been a succour or provided alternative for marriages on the verge of collapse but the reverse is the case as the church has in some instances facilitated marriage breakups. Instances abound where wives who have gone to ministers of God to seek solutions for their marriage trials have ended up being wooed by the ministers . A startling number of veteran Christians, even high profile preachers have taken to divorce as the last resort to end their marriage disagreements. The church as soon as the last marriage is dissolved presides over another marriage by the same preacher.

It could have been more ideal for a preacher who resorted to divorce as the last effort to end marriage disagreements to lack the moral courage to preside over church activities. This is because one of the maxims of equity prescribes that" he who comes to equity must come with clean hands".

If the truth and biblical principles were to be upheld in the church, Christians who sought unbiblical divorces should not be allowed to hold high offices in the church. Also, the church could have served as a center for instructions that enrich the lives of members. By so doing, many marriages could have been saved from collapse.

Another major contributor to the unprecedented marriage breakups are the legal institutions. The sanctity of marriage institutions is by no means respected by our legal institutions as they blink no eyelid in invoking some legal instruments to dissolve marriages even on the most ridiculous grounds.

Part of the efforts that would ameliorate this worrisome situation is for intending couples not to go into marriage on face values or basing marriage consideration on elements that are transient or superficial such as wealth, beauty or family background. Marriage considerations should be strongly based on genuine love which surpasses all superficial considerations.

Also, parents should reduce their influence in marriages either at the contractual stage or the marriage proper. They should allow couples to bear their crosses, including childlessness. Immense respect should be accorded to the biblical injunction: "For this cause a man shall leave his father and his mother and shall cleave to his wife;and they shall become one flesh "(Genesis 2:24).

It is noteworthy here to submit that the parties that suffer most in marriage breakups are the children as they are raised in a very poor form, most times by single parents. This also has spiral effect on the larger society as ill- mannered youths or adults are unleashed on the larger society. It is also not out of place to assert that women from broken homes most times do not make good wives.

At this juncture, a pathetic appeal goes to couples to strive beyond reasonable limits to make their marriages work by being prayerful and reducing to its barest minimum third party involvements in their marriages.

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