Excerpt from Imagine the Future You, to reflect the historical romance novels, Peach Blossom Rancher and The Lady Fugitive, the first two books in the Peaches and Dreams series.
All three books are available from Ada Brownell's Amazon Author page, https://www.amazon.com/author/adabrownell
BRING GOD INTO YOUR MARRIAGE
By Ada Brownell
A wedding gown probably is the most beautiful dress most women wear in their lives. Even the least expensive are exquisite.
Young men, too, probably will never be more handsome than the day they stand at the altar waiting in a tuxedo for the beautiful bride.
Children often like to play “bride and bridegroom,” and during their growing years, many girls dream of the day when they walk down the church aisle, dressed in white, as the wedding march fills the sanctuary.
In 1953, my husband and I got married, about half of all women were married by age twenty, and half of all men by age twenty-two. In 2002, the average age for the bride was twenty-five and bridegroom age twenty-seven.
Today, thousands of couples are living together without being married, and multitudes of young women give birth to babies without being married. In addition, fifty-some million babies have been killed by abortion in the United States since abortion became legal in 1973.
Something happened. A large number of young men don’t bend a knee and extend a tiny box containing a diamond and ask their beloved to marry them. Instead, many just want to rush the girls off to bed somewhere and perhaps live together.
Some folks blame the lack of finances and needing to wait to earn a college education as the reason to delay marriage, but it doesn’t make sense. You can get a marriage license for a few bucks. A pastor will marry you for free, but it’s customary to pay him one hundred dollars or so. A couple can live cheaper than two single people, and you can get your education after marriage. I did. Thousands of people earn their degrees later, and most of the people did from generations before us.
But there is something else—and it’s huge. Young women and men are giving away their virginity as if they are dropping a penny on the sidewalk and leaving it there. Guys who already have a sexual relationship with a woman won’t hurry to get married. A woman who gives away her virginity before marriage risks never being married—especially to him!
With throwing away virginity goes the dream of walking down the church aisle in a white wedding gown or a tuxedo as a virgin, pure and unblemished. Maybe the bride will wear white, but it won’t mean anything—especially to the couple.
In addition, sex before marriage causes emotional consequences. Physicians Joe S. McIlhaney and Freda McKissic Bush, authors of the book Hooked, say neuroscience has discovered sexual activity releases a chemical that impacts the brains of developing adolescents and young adults. These chemicals cause an emotional bond between partners, and when this bond is broken, the youth suffers depression and difficulty with bonding in future relationships.
In contrast, when the bride is a virgin and her man loved her enough to control his own urges for his wedding day, there is suspense, excitement, electricity, and sparks that go way beyond the fireworks of the wedding. When they bow their knees together and pray with the minister’s hands on their heads, they are serious about this commitment. They recite their vows to God, concluding with tears in their eyes, “Until death do us part,” and they intend to keep their vow. If they continue to follow Him, God will help them through the better or worse, thick or thin, hair or baldness, sickness or health, poorer or richer.
Staying pure until the wedding night is the way God dreams of life for young couples.
Sure, God knows about sex. He invented it. Here’s what God’s Word says: “Marriage is honorable in all, and the bed undefiled” (Hebrews 13:4).
But love is much more than going to bed. It's commitment. It's making a decision to love, because love is a decision.