Do Relationships Die from a Counselors Perspective

Saturday, May 21, 2016 @ 6:04 PM

Do relationships really die? I have heard it said a number of times by pastors, pastoral counselors, therapists and espoused individuals that they or a couple is, “in a dead marriage.”

Marriage is a covenant or an agreement, a contract between two people originally established by God between a man and a women (the first were Adam and Eve) and while the Bible says in marriage that: [re: the Principles of Marriage] “Now concerning the things of which you wrote to me: It is good for a man not to touch a woman. Nevertheless, because of sexual immorality, let each man have his own wife, and let each woman have her own husband. Let the husband render to his wife the affection due her, and likewise also the wife to her husband. ...” (1 Cor. 7, NKJV) it doesn’t always seem to work out as we planned.

Many in my care over the years have read to me the above and only seen the physical aspect of it. But in my understanding it’s more than just about sex. Many miss the meaning with understanding of the word affection. It’s so about true love and devotion to God and in service to one another! In the above Paul is answering questions specifically but there was so much more behind what he was saying.

Note: According to enrichment journal on the divorce rate in America: The divorce rate in America for first marriage is 41%

What is Marriage? “The word "covenant," infrequently heard in conversation, is quite commonly used in legal, social (marriage), and religious and theological contexts.

The Idea of Covenant: The term "covenant" is of Latin origin (con venire), meaning a coming together. It presupposes two or more parties who come together to make a contract, agreeing on promises, stipulations, privileges, and responsibilities.’ (

I wonder how many folks really didn’t fully understand just what it was that they were getting into and signing on for or did they just have their own idea of what they would be getting or creating as a future life of their choosing and possibly at the expense of another? Was it all talked out? The huge reality of the life-long commitment they were agreeing to and maybe after finding out not truly willing to give and to do as they agreed to. To love, to give, to serve and be emotionally and intellectually available, what does that even mean?

Take the fallen human condition and especially with the biblical illiteracy that has plagued our generations over time at least as I see it in the part of the world wherein I live and serve and it’s a total horror! I want to be clear I’m not just talking in the physical sense, e.g., sexuality, but I’m referring to human responsibility to love and care and nurture one another emotionally, intellectually and so on. Do we care for each other, about each other, for each other? Do we even really know who each other are?

In Exodus 21:7-11 the Word states regarding females given as servants and/or wives possibly in difficult times and yet under the Law, 7 “And if a man sells his daughter to be a female slave, she shall not go out as the male slaves do. 8 If she does not please her master, who has betrothed her to himself, then he shall let her be redeemed. He shall have no right to sell her to a foreign people, since he has dealt deceitfully with her. 9And if he has betrothed her to his son, he shall deal with her according to the custom of daughters. 10 If he takes another wife, he shall not diminish her food, her clothing, and her marriage rights. 11 And if he does not do these three for her, then she shall go out free, without paying money.”(NKJV)

The Apostle Paul clearly recognized these statutes mentioned above and with great depth and insight as to what it all truly meant to living souls in need of true love and care and I believe he alluded to them when he wrote 1 Corinthians 7:5, “Defraud =(swindle; cheat; deceive; trick; fleece; con; dupe) ye not one the other, except it be with consent for a time, that ye may give yourselves to fasting and prayer; and come together again, that Satan tempt you not for your incontinency. 6 But I speak this by permission, and not of commandment.”(KJV)

While the questions asked of Paul and as he responded regarding sexual relations in a godly marriage between husband and wife the bigger problem as I see retrospectively in light of what I find today was the condition of the heart of one living soul and their ability and/or reluctance to truly love one for another.

“Likewise, ye husbands, dwell with them according to knowledge, giving honour unto the wife, as unto the weaker vessel, and as being heirs together of the grace of life; that your prayers be not hindered. 8 Finally, be ye all of one mind, having compassion one of another, love as brethren, be pitiful, be courteous: 9 Not rendering evil for evil, or railing for railing: but contrariwise blessing; knowing that ye are thereunto called, that ye should inherit a blessing.” (1 Peter 3:7-9)