Tuesday, May 26, 2009

Jon and Kate: A Case Study

I've been preaching through a sermon series called "Inside Out Living" and the basic premise is this: You have 3 priorities. God first. Marriage and family next. Everyone else. This past week, I preached on the family. I shared a personal story (from my blog a couple weeks ago) about how my marriage was struggling because we hadn't made it a priority, and how difficult it is with busy schedules, and children, etc. Thankfully, God helped both of us see the path we were headed down and we got things turned around and are kind of doing a self-counseling thing together now by going through the book "The Love Dare" - HIGHLY recommend it to ANY couple! As I shared and really pushed the idea that a relationship with God MUST be your first priority in life, and right behind that your relationship with your spouse, and right behind that your relationship with your kids - then comes everyone else. I then spoke to the fact that you have to put tons of time and commitment into your marriage, as just loving someone may not be enough - as my wife and I never stopped loving one another, but weren't spending enough quality time together. I had a lot of young folks coming up saying things like, "good to know we're not alone" and "I'm in the same situation you were/are." There are tons of people out there who are struggling in their marriage relationship and they have no idea why.

Enter Jon and Kate. They have been smeared all over the tabloids and internet for months now. They were the happy little, or is it big, family that even went to church on TV at first. Now, tonight was the season premiere and they never even looked at one another and it seems like divorce is a real possibility in their future. They both talked about feeling alone in what they were doing, and they both also said, "I'll keep doing this for the kids." "As long as the kids are happy that's what's most important." My wife and I just felt horrible watching it unfold before our eyes tonight. Regardless of what has or has not happened with Jon and Kate individually, here is yet another couple who has the same problem - their priorities are messed up. I'm sure they both have a relationship with God, but it doesn't seem like it's the FIRST priority in either of their lives. And also, it doesn't seem like they've made their marriage a priority either. They have put their kids (and careers) before their marriage - trouble city!!

We prayed for them tonight during our Love Dare time. I got online to see about sending them an encouraging note. Their personal website was crashed because it had so much traffic. Their TLC site was up, I linked to her blog and read her most recent post (a week ago) and there were 640 comments to her post - MOST of them in response to watching tonight's episode. Hundreds of people are wrecked after seeing what's going on between the two of them. I was going to leave a comment, but the folks who had been there before me had more than covered what I would have said. So I went to my blog instead. SO many people were calling them out on not putting their marriage first, and also trying to persuade them that what's "best for the kids" is a mom and dad who stay together and work it out. I HOPE they get the message.

I'm praying for big things for the two of them. Not because they're celebrities or because they deserve it, or because they have a lot of kids. I'm praying for God to do big things in their relationship because SO many people NEED to see that reconciliation can happen in a marriage. It doesn't have to always resort to separation! What an amazing thing it would be if by the end of this season, they were working it out in front of millions of viewers. Truth be told, I hope they stop the show altogether as I think that is one of the main problems, but before they do, I'd love for God to work a miracle and use them to hammer down this point, and I hope they get God involved in it.

It's not easy, but it is clear - you HAVE TO HAVE A RELATIONSHIP WITH GOD AS YOUR FIRST PRIORITY IN LIFE. John 15, Jesus says, "Remain in me," "without Me you can do nothing." We will have a horrible time with all other relationships in our life until we get this one where it needs to be. Then right behind that has to be your relationship with your spouse - and it takes love, time, and commitment. And parents, we have to raise our kids right - plan God into your family, make Christian living a part of your everyday life. And of course, we have a responsibility to everyone else around us as well. If you can get your priorities straight, it will change your life, for the better. Without these priorities set, you're in for a long, hard road.

No comments: