(Money…in Marriage) The Root of All Kinds of Evil?

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            Got your Holiday shopping done yet??? Nah, me neither. But that’s what it’s all about, you know. You can’t get those sugar plumbs dancing without all the expensive toys to go with them. At least that’s what they want you to believe. But it’s not just Christmas or holidays, it’s life in general. We are a very consumer driven society. Our TVs and phones constantly tell us what it takes to be happy in life. That includes a constant bombardment of new things, distractions, and pastimes. If you fail to get them, you can’t be happy, and are Failing at Life. That’s a lot of pressure.

What precedes the Bible verse in the title of this post is ‘The love of money’ (Timothy 6:10). While in itself, money is not evil, the love of it can cause big problems, even in marriage. On Divorse.com, Financial Problems is listed as the number one cause for divorce, narrowly beating out Infidelity and Adultery. I believe it’s a subject definitely worth talking about, on a blog site dedicated to marriage and family issues.

In some ways, the next two infidelity and adultery are also related. It’s all about unfulfilled wants and desires. But for this post we will stick with money, and in particular, the love of it. It will help if you don’t think of money as an end, it is only a means, or better yet a tool. You need tools to maintain and to build. First assess where you are at. What tools (financial resources) and skills do you currently possess. Then, you and your partner should decide what you want to build in the future. What do you have, and what will you need? Patience and planning are keys. Never borrow more tools than absolutely necessary to achieve goals. Debt is the devil’s playground, and a major source of unfulfillment in marriage. Life is unpredictable, so frequently reassess your plans. Also, there are many sources of additional sage advice on financial planning. Make it a lifelong goal, as a couple, to continue your education on personal finance.

That’s enough about the basics of money and planning. I believe a second source of money related discord in marriage results from, a failure to appreciate all with which we have been blessed. Too often I see couples living for a future, which might never come. They convince themselves they need certain things to be happy. They spend their lives so busy that they are unable to appreciate each other, or the gifts each day presents. I have told my daughters, ‘Money comes, and money goes, but time only comes once’.

After his experience living an isolated life at Waldon Pond, Thoreau said about life, “Simplify, simplify”. He realized that, to some extent, your wants dictate what you consider needs. I know this has proved true in our lives. When I worked at a pizza place, in between career jobs, I would bring home the outdated dough to make my own pizza and bread sticks. Crystal and the girls rarely complained. It was then we had more time to play, go on walks, engage in church and community activities, and in short, enjoy time as a couple and a family.

When I supervised a third shift crew at an industrial plant, ten-hour days, six to seven days a week, Crystal and I went every morning to the local coffee shop or the park to talk. After sleeping, I would spend time with the girls before going to work.

In all, I believe your happiness in life, and in your marriage, is determined by how you choose to spend your limited time, and not your bank account. Marriage is only beneficial when two people truly like/love each other, and are able to work together toward common goals.

All of the time remember…nobody is perfect…not even you (or me…man that was hard). What do you need in a lifelong partner? A quote I like, and will leave you with is, “You don’t need someone to complete you. You only need someone to accept you completely.” Author Unknown 

This is the site of Thoreau’s original cabin by Waldon Pond. Crystal and I visited this summer.
Our local Walmart. They are ready and waiting. I tried to give them a lump of coal. But they prefer cash or credit.
Category: Make Marriage Last

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