This was posted by Eric Metaxas on Breakpoint.org:
Indeed, especially if children are involved. As National Marriage Week USA Executive Director, my friend Sheila Weber wrote for Fox News, there is a “2 percent chance of poverty if you finish high school, work full time, and postpone marriage and childbearing until age 21. If you don’t do these three things, there is a 77 percent chance of poverty.” [Emphasis added]
* Finish high school;
* Get a full-time job; and
* Wait until after 21 to get married and have children.
For many young women today, the exact opposite holds true: get pregnant, don’t get married, can’t get a full-time job and no chance of finishing high school.
It’s the poverty cycle and it’s seems to never end.
So how is the cycle broken? Obviously, if a woman can check the box on the three items above it certainly helps. But how do you get a woman to that point?
In my opinion, this gospel of Jesus Christ is what changes things.
Jesus tells us that He is the way, the truth and the life (John 14:6). In a culture that struggles with a way, with truth and with life, this is oh so important to remember.
First, let’s start with truth. Today’s post-modern culture boasts that truth is relative, blah, blah, blah. That’s a death trap, folks. When there is no truth, there is only relativism. And where there’s only relativism, there is no hope. There is a way that seems right to a man, but it’s end leads to death (Proverbs 14:12). That’s where our culture is leading us now.
But with Christ, there is truth. Yes, there is a heaven and, yes, there is a hell. No, all don’t go to heaven. Yes, we are sinners. Yes, our sin sentences us to death. But, YES, Jesus has paid for those sins. Yes, all can be redeemed, no matter the sin or consequence. Yes, Jesus does indeed offer hope.
The way of man leads to death, but the way of Jesus leads to life. He is the WAY, the truth and the LIFE. When we surrender to Jesus Christ, we not only acknowledge that we need a Savior – a Savior who has paid for our sins, we also acknowledge that Jesus Christ is Lord of our lives. Because He is Lord of our lives, we acknowledge that He owns us. We are the sheep and He is the shepherd. We acknowledge that wherever He leads, we will go.
And the way Jesus leads will always go away from sin. Colossians 2:6 says, “Therefore, as you received Christ Jesus the Lord, so walk in him” (ESV). As we walk with Christ and in Him, we won’t ever want to walk with sin. Yes, we will sin, we won’t be perfect until heaven, but the Spirit of God that lives inside of us will help us to practice righteousness.
Let me give an example.
A young woman receives Jesus Christ as her Savior in her early teen years. She begins faithfully studying God’s word and letting God be her guide. She understands that she should get married before consummating physical relationships. She understands now that she should do her best in every situation, not just for herself, but because she wants to please the Lord. She gets older and perseveres to graduate from high school. Because she’s single and without children (because she waited), she has the flexibility to get a job – albeit low paying, but she also has the flexibility to attend college at night.
She meets men at work and college and she occasionally goes out on dates, but she’s not ready to pursue a marital relationship with any of them because she’s waiting for a man of God, someone with which she can be equally yoked. Meanwhile, she finishes her degree and finds a better paying, full-time job. She’s able to find her own place to live, in a better part of town and she’s getting by and even saving a bit of money. Finally, she meets a man at church and they eventually marry. Because he’s waited to find a godly woman, he’s also finished with his education and has started a career. Together, they aren’t rich, but they are stable and ready to bring more life into the world.
It may sound like a fairy tale – and I guess this is to some, but it’s not. It’s something that all can pursue. It’s not easy. It’s not without toil and struggle, but it’s toil and struggle that is led by Christ and in His WAY and in His LIFE.
The world wants us to think we can have it all. Sin? What sin? Just live. Be happy. Do what you want to do. It all looks good in the television commercials, but the reality is, it produces a very hard life.
What could make someone want to change? Don’t we want to at least think we can have it all and do it all without and consequences? It’s an illusion, folks. It’s the American dream that will turn into a nightmare.
The irony is that we can surrender ourselves and fall under the Lordship of another – Jesus Christ – and have life abundantly with Him. Don’t get me wrong. When I say “abundant,” I don’t mean lives filled with Cadillacs and Hummers. I mean an abundant life of following the King, Jesus Christ. Wherever He leads, we’ll go.