For a debate in college about divorce, my classmate (he was top of the class) asked me what argument against divorce could I contribute beside those which are common ones. What did we know about the subject considering that there’s no divorce law in our country and we were all engineering students faced with math problems everyday? But we did have minor subjects and we needed to study them, too.
I thought for a moment then gave my opinion. “I think the existence of divorce has a psychological effect to people. For the unmarried, I think they may tend to be rash in making decisions to marry thinking that if they had made a mistake or things didn’t go as expected, they could file a divorce and start a new life. And for the married to not do their best to make the marriage work. I think that if people knew there existed a law which easily dissolves a covenant and is accessible to all, they would tend to enter into that covenant with the mentality that it may, or may not be permanent.” In other words, it creates a mindset.
There is no divorce in our country Philippines. What we do have is annulment and it isn’t that popular, especially among the masses. I can think of 3 reasons why:
- Difficulty – it isn’t easy to get an annulment, and the process is tedious, frustrating for many, and may take many years. I believe that our country, being predominantly Christian (though different sects), has stringent annulment law.
- Cost – it is very costly to pay for lawyers’ services. Almost only the wealthy can afford it. So, it is like a special privilege, if I may say so.
- Beliefs – I believe that majority of the Filipino people still believe in and cling to the sanctity of marriage, that separation brings a stigma, and so, they do their best to stay in the marriage.
These reasons could both be a strength and a weakness. Strength because they drive couples to avoid, at all costs, having to resort to annulment and lead them to the way of reconciliation. Weakness because for spouses who cannot afford the process, yet, their separation is final, may nevertheless choose to live with others while still legally bound to each other. They may start new families of their own without the blessing of marriage.
But, whether divorce or annulment, the fact still remains that broken marriages and shattered homes exist and so, there must be something higher, something that is above our strength, wisdom and power to do, that could give people hope for a strong, healthy, and lasting marriage.
That hope is in the Lord Jesus Christ.
Some people may have become bitter, cynical even, to believe that there is hope in a wrecked marriage. But there is. And that is our testimony.
I had walked down that hall – eerie, cold, and seemed not to care about the heaviness, the turmoil, that was going on inside me. I stared at dark, hardwood shelves that lined the walls and reached the ceiling; they sturdily held thick volumes of Law books. Two lawyers sat across the dark, burnished round table, as they briefed me about the rough road ahead. This was the Law Office of the country’s high-caliber names. And I felt so unsure. Lost.
I walked down that quiet hall again. Why was the road to freedom felt like diving into a bottomless pit? It is because true freedom is not obtained through a legal process, but a spiritual process. The Lord Jesus Christ declares:
I am the way, the truth, and the life… (John 14:6)
And only the Truth sets one free (John 8:32).
I continued to muse.How could one get out of this difficult, painful situation? Isn’t there any other way out of this mess? How could one undo what’s been done? Unbreak what had been callously broken? How could one erase, rub and wash clean the stain of shame and sin? How could one end and close something at last or how could one start anew – either a new life with the old or a fresh new beginning with the new? Are these even possible?
I had absolutely no idea.
I didn’t go back to that law office. Sometimes it’s good to be in that place of indecision. Then salvation came. And with it, restoration. Restoration! How I love that word! He restoreth my soul. He restored my family. He makes all things new!
It is all so easy for He has done it all. It is all for free for He paid it all.
Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; old things have passed away; behold, all things have become new. (2 Cor. 5:17)
Walk to Christ. Surrender to Christ. Be in Christ. He is the solution to our heartbreaking problems.
- More on our testimony: Only Jesus
- Know the keys of salvation here.
- For inquiries, prayer and counselling, and more information on the Gospel of salvation, click here.
- Blemished canvas of our wedding photo
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