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[222] Silent Killer

There is a silent killer in the kingdom of God.  It is bad relationships—alienation–in Christian families. Almost every time I run across a Christian family who have “covenant children” who are not believers, I see relational dysfunction in the family.  This can take many forms, but often its genesis is an unhealthy relationship between the parents. I know one spiritually active Christian couple in which the husband—while staying married and getting along with his spouse on the surface—literally despises his wife.  I have a hard time imagining his children have not picked up on the scent.  Most of the children are either very quiet about their faith or have openly rejected it.

This happens over and over and over again.  Unhealthy families composed of spiritually disabled believers—if they are believers at all.

Why?

I think one reason is that the church has drifted away from focusing on the part of the Second Great Commandment that advocates love, forgiveness, and grace.  It is hard to get definitive stats, but many report the divorce rate among professing Christians is running close to the national average. I (and many of my Christian friends) have contributed to those statistics, and it is the biggest failing of my life. My concern is that the church seems to be looking the other way, more interested in discussing gay marriage and other “them” issues than the ever growing “we” issue of marriage breakdown among its members. And it’s everywhere.  People with television ministries quietly get divorced, and then reappear a few years later with a new spouse as if the previous marriage partner never existed.

Please understand, I am not advocating a reintroduction of the scarlet letter era.  I am saying that healthy disciples come from healthy families, and if the church really wants to make a difference in the world, a good place to start might be placing healthy Christian relationships at the top of its agenda. DC

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